tv The Lead With Jake Tapper CNN April 24, 2013 1:00pm-2:00pm PDT
mad at me the cruiser is a little damaged. i said, sarnlg, you kidding me? they're going to be writing about you in the textbooks. that was brilliant under a very difficult situation to be able to think that through and do that. >> reporter: drew griffin, cnn, watertown, massachusetts. >> tears for the victims, serious questions for the feds. i'm jake tapper and this is "the lead." we now know the suspected mas r er mind of the boston terrorist attacks was on two separate terrorist data bases lawmakers demanding to know why red flakes did not fly sooner. also how the movie theater massacre in aurora, colorado saved lives in boston. the unexpected connection between the two tragedies. and they were, quote, twisted, perverted, cowardly knock off jihadis. those were the vice president's words today describing the accused boston bombers. did he reveal too much by speaking from the gut?
a final good-bye to a fallen officer. the final life claimed in a rampage of terror. once again we're coming to you live from boston where a memorial for m.i.t. police officer sean collier wrapped up earlier not far from us here on the campus in cambridge. collier was gunned down in his patrol car thursday night police say by the brothers suspected of bombing the boston marathon. police came by the bus load today to pay their last respects and vice president joe biden spoke, evoking his own personal tragedy. >> i know from experience that sense of dread that reliving the moment in the last nine days almost hourly of the moment you
learned the fate of your child. >> after vice president biden spoke singer james taylor took the stage and sang "shower the people" with some help from the m.i.t. a capella group. ♪ shower the people you love with love show them the way that you feel ♪ >> officer collier is of course one of the four people allegedly killed by the bombing suspects. the other three 8-year-old martin richard. his family is planning a public memorial in the weeks ahead. 29-year-old krystle campbell was at the race to cheer on a friend. 23-year-old lingzi lu was a boston grad student from china. 39 people remain in the hospital this afternoon one in critical condition. we heard some contradictory messages today from the obama administration about this terrorist investigation. while vice president biden was speaking at officer collier's memorial he had harsh words for the two suspects accused of
killing collier and those three others. >> they can never defeat us whether al qaeda central or two twisted, perverted, cowardly knock-off jihadis here in boston. >> did the vice president get carried away there? from a certain angle that seems to indicate they were unaffiliated wanna-bes. jay carney would not touch that during his briefing today. >> i think the act was cowardly and it was terrorism. >> he seemed to indicate he doesn't believe they are connected to a large, foreign -- >> seemed to -- i'm sorry. you're making assessments i'm not going to engage in. >> another member of the obama administration secretary of state john kerry may have also gone overboard in talking about
the suspects. here is what secretary kerry said during a trip to belgium. >> we just had a young person who went to russia and chechnya who blew people up in boston. he didn't stay where he went but learned something where he went and came back with a willingness to kill people. >> now, that sounds like the opposite of what vice president biden was saying. kerry seemed to be indicating the older suspect was trained during his trip to russia. i asked a senior state department official about this. he seemed to be trying to distance kerry from his own comments saying the secretary was expressing broad concern about radicalism in general rather than giving any new information or conclusions. now to the investigation and the new information we're learning about the two suspects, still no cause of death determined for the older suspect tamerlan tsarnaev but law enforcement and national security forces are now telling cnn he was on two
different terror data bases. those sources say he was not on a no fly list but there was a flag in one of the data bases to ping authorities if he tried to leave the country. apparently the system did ping when he went to russia last year but the flag in the system expired while tsarnaev was over there and then there was no ping on his return trip. we're also learning more about what the pair may have been planning next police in new york city saying the brothers may have intended to flee there. >> they may have intended to come to new york but not to continue what they were doing. information we received said something about a parting, having a parting. >> police commissioner ray kelley of new york city says that information came from the interviews with the surviving suspect. dzhokhar tsarnaev remains hospitalized in fair condition. sources say he has been communicating with investigators and is in the same hospital as
several victims where they are still recovering and prosecutors say the families are not happy about that. tsarnaev could be moved in the coming days to a different state facility. i want to bring in our cnn national security analyst juliette kayyem. let's talk about this intelligence sharing issue. we heard about it after 9/11 and now again. one agency had information but other agencies did not know about it. >> so this is an issue now. a little opposite of the stove piping where there is so much information coming from so many different agencies. you mentioned two data bases. there are probably up to a dozen. only one of them is very, very serious. that is the terrorist watch list and means you are not getting on the plane. so all of these different data bases have different standards. one of the fixes if there is to be one and after all the evidence comes in, is there a way to ensure the information on them is based on the same standards? clearly what happened is his name fell off the list.
he wasn't pinged on the way back. so we're still trying to determine, if 9/11 was a dallas/ft. worth of information this may be one of those instances where there is so much information and that not that it wasn't shared but also that the standards were different for each of them. that's what we're trying to discern, what watch list were you on? he was not on the big one. if he had been on the terror watch list that triggers fbi, dhs, and all of them. that should be small. you don't want a lot of people on a terror watch list because you're going to lose the real threat. >> on its face the russians reach out to the u.s. in 2011 and say this guy is an extremist. he is coming here to do bad things. check him out. the fbi goes. they check him out. when he comes back from the trip that the russians are warning about, theoretically should not the fbi have known? >> if they knew he had come back from the trip. that is the piece we don't know. did the ping not occur on the way back soon enough to notify
the fbi and make clear and this is the standard issue, sort of unifying all the standard is even if the fbi had been notified was it enough to trigger an investigation? you're going to see a lot of questions about notification versus investigation. this sounds very technical. no one wants it to be technical. that is why some of the fixes will probably occur. >> thank you so much. some lawmakers call the boston bombing investigation dejavu. they want to know how the older suspect managed to pull off the attacks despite being put on the fbi radar back in 2011. joining us live from washington, d.c. is congressman mike mccall chairman of the house homeland security committee. congressman, thanks for joining us. >> thanks for having me. >> you were briefed on the investigation yesterday by members of the intelligence community. what if anything have you learned that would make you think the fbi did not go far enough when it investigated tamerlan tsarnaev back in 2011? >> you're right. they did have a russian lead saying he is an extremist.
going to travel outside the united states to join up with underground extremists. they do put a lead on him for several months. they close the lead. it's a travel issue that has become kind of the big question here in terms of who knew what and when. the fact is the fbi told us several days ago they did not know that he traveled to russia at that time. the department of homeland security secretary napolitano testified that a flag did go up on their data base which is a different data base. you basically have the department of homeland security with the information he's traveling to the chechen region and the fbi not knowing about that and the question is was that shared with the fbi within the joint terrorism task force? that's a very, very important question because as you point out, connecting the dots after 9/11 is what it is really supposed to be about and we thought we had fixed this. >> now one of the things that's been questioned is whether or not there should have been a
request to be able to spy on him because there is a reason to believe that he is acting as an agent of a foreign country or foreign power or terrorist group. do you, congressman, know of any reas reason, substantive, why he should have been not just in 20/20 hindsight but at the time why there should have been a warrant granted to surveil tamerlan tsarnaev? >> no. remember the fbi closer investigation finding no derogatory information. i was a federal prosecutor who actually applied for those warrants. there was not the predication in my judgment to establish he was an agent of a foreign power. at that time i was very concerned is just like you about his overseas travel. very different versions, but the narrative that almost immediately there is no foreign connection here when the fbi has just begun its investigation. they've just started to look at this guy's computer records.
they're sending a team over today, u.s. team over to interview witnesses in the chechen region so for anybody to come out and say there is no foreign connection at all is highly premature and very irresponsible. >> lastly, congressman, do you know of any facts emernling from dagestan, chechnya, russia, of what exactly tamerlan tsarnaev was doing there? >> i think as the secretary of state kerry mentioned there's some concern that he could have been trained over there. the reason i say that is because the explosive devices that he used were highly sophisticated devices. quite frankly the way they handled him so professionally with the trade craft we are very concerned there is a person or persons out there who trained him to do this. whether that's overseas or in the united states remains unknown. but we sure hope to get to the bottom of it. i do intend to hold congressional hearings on this
issue so we could find out, number one, how this happened, what went wrong, and then how can we fix it to prevent it from happening again. >> congressman mccall, thank you so much for your time. still ahead, we'll show you a terrorist training camp where islamic radicals learn to build bombs. it just happens to be in the same country that tamerlan tsarnaev visited last year. but first, i'll take you inside a hospital where victims of the boston terrorist attacks are still fighting to recover. hear their inspiring stories, next. ♪ ♪ [ male announcer ] this is a reason to look twice. this is a stunning work of technology. the 2013 lexus es and the first-ever es hybrid. this is the pursuit of perfection.
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women's hospital where nine patients are still being treated. since 9/11 hospitals around the country have prepared themselves for worst case scenarios to come rushing through their e.r. doors. for dr. ron walls chair of the department of emergency medicine here at brigham and women's university in boston the lessons that prepared him for the boston bombing were much more recent. >> communication and coordination is everything. ideally we work where we have one patient comes in as a trauma patient we have a really high -- highly trained team around them that works beautifully together and they take amazing care of that one patient. what happens when you multiply that by 20? one of the real calls for us was the aurora shootings and that was the second sort of deliberate event that set the stage for these good outcomes. what happened in aurora was that they got -- these people were transported by police vehicles, private cars and they got all the patients in one hour.
that is a very unusual circumstance and made us wonder could we do that if we got that kind of influx? could we handle it? so we started looking more specifically at how do we handle an unexpectedly large number of critical patients in a very short period of time? we always had that and we tested it but what aurora did for us is it crystalized a specific question and that specific question was could we take 23 critical patients in one hour? we had never answered that. >> until last monday when they answered almost to the letter. >> i heard the sirens. it was almost like every siren in the city started up at once. never heard anything like it. i've been here 20 years. it's fortunate we thought about this the way we thought about the aurora arivals because that is what really happened. in fact we got 23 patients in a little over an hour. >> the exact same number. you still have nine patients here from the terrorist attack. how are they doing?
>> we still have nine and they are doing amazingly well. these are serious injuries, life changing injuries. the patients we have in hospital now predominantly have orth peed ik injuries, really significant blast type orthopedic injuries so they've been having procedures initially for limb salvage to try to save the limbs and now into the phase where it's more about the healing and reconstruction to restore their limbs to functional activity. so far we just have the one amputation. we're very pleased with that. >> nine patients remain here today most in good condition but even for professionals like dr. walls the scenes of that day take a toll. >> was this the worst thing you'd ever seen? >> i have seen injuries like that individually but never collectively to get that many patients with those injuries. they were really dramatic injuries. we've seen things like this but seeing that many at once was a totally unique experience that i hope i never have again.
>> we have in our brains photographs of them at their best. you and the hospital staff have images of victims not at their best at their most vulnerable and desperate. >> yes. >> does that stay with you forever? >> i guess it will. it's too soon to tell. i guess we're not to forever yet. i certainly have patients that passed that stay with me forever. i think the remarkable thing about being a trained, experienced sort of expert care giver is that when you see these people they're on the brink. they're right at the edge. maybe the edge between life and death or the edge between sort of a good life and bad life. and pulling them back from that is a really powerful experience. so it gives you a very good feeling that you used your skills and knowledge to help those patients in the right direction. we don't feel helpless in here. we feel like it's our mission to get them help. >> for more on how you can help
the bombing survivors go to cnn.com/impact. up next it's a part of the world rife with poverty, instability, and terrorism. now the fbi wants to know what tamerlan tsarnaev was doing in dagestan. later, they raised $20 million after the bombing so how do you divide up that money among the victims? my interview with koern ken feinberg who is in charge of the one fund. that and more after this. girl vo: i'm pretty conservative. very logical thinker. (laughs) i'm telling you right now, the girl back at home would absolutely not have taken a zip line in the jungle.
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in the region. now u.s. authorities want to know what bombing suspect tamerlan tsarnaev was doing there last year and who he may have met with. during the six-month trip he took outside the united states. our nick peyton walsh reports. >> reporter: this is dagestani militant abu dijon in a video one of the alleged boston bombers tamerlan tsarnaev post owned his youtube channel. russian special forces killed abu dijon during a shootout last december in dagestan and we don't know if they ever met but dagestani police have revealed to cnn the small time militant ran training camps for bomb making that foreigners came to. police gave us images of his group training in the woods. this one explains how to mix and prepare home made explosives almost anywhere. and the group's pictures suggest they learned to use a mobile phone as a detonator. the local police chief who
helped hunt him down says the militant trained foreigners. >> we do not have audio or visual confirmation but we do have information confirming that he met with foreigners. >> what did the foreigners learn in the woods? >> translator: i can't talk about the number of foreigners but they met to exchange their experience. they are dagestanis who have taken citizenship elsewhere and come here to meet in the historical motherland whose roots are here. >> reporter: could that have included americans? >> it's entirely possible but i know there were arabs and turks among them. whether there were americans i don't know. >> reporter: the police told us he was often observed coming here to the heart of the city to this islamic mosque behind me which itself denies any links to extremism. it is possible, though, that tamerlan tsarnaev last year also
prayed here. of course the mosque is their mosque. our technological work gives us operational information that abu dijon went there, met people, and agitated. not once but many times. >> there are reports he was observed at the mosque and observed meeting tsarnaev. do you know this? >> translator: i really can't answer this. for different reasons i can't answer. you understand me? >> nick payton walsh joins us live now from dagestan. is it possible that tamerlan tsarnaev was linked to these insurgents in dagestan? >> it's entirely possible. they were in the same city at the same time. tamerlan tsarnaev linked to a video of abu dijon from his
youtube channel but we have no proof they met or were in actual contact at all. circumstantially it is entirely possible and you see the wealth of evidence there that suggest it. i should point out u.s. officials are investigating what social media suggests about any links to extremism here but there is no concrete link established between them yet apart from that on his youtube channel, jake. >> all right. nick payton walsh in dagestan, thanks. please stay safe. up next, how do you put a price on a lost limb or the life of a loved one? that's the impossible task attorney ken feinberg will face when he decides how to divvy up $20 million in donations among the victims of the boston marathon terrorist attacks. i asked him about it. and we'll talk about that in a little bit. later, he works for the department of homeland security but is also a victim of the boston bombings.
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welcome back to "the lead." for one immigration and customs enforcement official the investigation into the bombings is not just business but personal. richard coleman was standing with friends and family at the finish line when the bombs went off. he is with enforcement and remove operations program. he is here with me now. richard, you saw the blasts. >> yes. >> you were there at the scene. you're telling your story for the first time. tell it. >> we were at forum. one of my friends was running the marathon. forum is the restaurant. >> where the second explosion happened. we received a text notification she was nearing the finish line. we went on the patio area to finish our last drink and were going to walk outside to meet her at the finish line. right when i walked out the first explosion went off down the street. my friends, mckala told me that
i said oh, my god it's a bomb. right as i said that the second explosion went off right next to us. it was probably about somewhere between five and ten feet from where we were standing on the patio. mckala and i fell on the ground or were knocked over. i'm not sure. so i stood there -- sat there for a moment trying to get my bearings and figure out what to do. mckala got up and started running into the restaurant. i chased after her. we found one of our other friends her husband who was in there at the time and started heading out the rear where security was directing everyone to go. at that time i realized my fourth friend i was with was nowhere around. i stopped. like i got to find him before we go. i'll meet you in the back. while i was walking around the restaurant i remember that i was wearing a work jacket. they give us, it resembles a jacket and there are credentials that say police and i pulled those out and the people hiding
in corners or still wandering around i directed to the back. everyone seemed relatively calmly to go single file out the back. nobody was panicking really. there was crying and screaming but still going as instructed. so i went to stand by the back. as i'm standing by the back probably the first five to ten people saw the police on my jacket. it seemed to make them feel a little bit better. but then the next five or ten people walked by and kind of just gave me a once over up and down with like a wide-eyed look but didn't say anything to me. they just continued to walk. finally someone walked by and she was like you know you're bleeding to death right now, right? and i looked down and i was standing in about a two-foot circumference pool of my own blood. a piece of the bomb had gone into my foot and the lower leg area. >> into your left foot. you have a cast on it. >> yes. it had severed the artery in my leg so i was bleeding to death in the restaurant.
at that point -- >> you hadn't felt anything. >> no. i was walking around the restaurant with, well, i thought perfectly normal. if i ever got a view of the video from forum i might be walking around like a zombie for all i know. >> tell us how your leg is. >> immensely better this week. i'll have to be in a cast for six weeks and have most of my parts, some of the tendons and muscles were torn out by the blast, the shrapnel i got hit by. so they said i should probably get somewhere between 80% and 90% use of my foot back. >> you're not going to lose -- >> no. not going to lose any part of my foot. >> your same unit with immigration and customs enforcement was involved in this operation the other night in watertown. >> yeah. i can't go into too many details. the investigation is still ongoing. my specific unit was in watertown and i would have been there had i not been injured in the blast as well. so watching that on tv was a little aggravating. >> we're so glad you are okay.
>> thank you. >> so grateful the wound wasn't more serious. >> thank you. >> thank you for the work you did that day. >> thank you. >> really appreciate all of the officials out there. kind of a stand in. thank you so much. appreciate your time. good luck with the healing. >> thank you. >> when we come back, putting a price on tragedy. there's already been an outpouring of generosity since the boston bombings. yesterday mayor menino announced the charitable foundation the one fund has raised $20 million for the victims of the terrorist attack in just the first week since the attack. i spoke to the man that now has the difficult decision of deciding who gets what, attorney ken feinberg. mr. feinberg, thanks for joining us. explain to us how you come up with the formula. you're in charge of this $20 million fund. how do you decide who is more worthy of more money? you have a double amputee in the hospital. on the other hand you have the richard family. they lost their son, a daughter lost a leg. the mother is in the hospital with serious health issues as a
result of the terrorist attack. how do you make a decision about who gets what? >> it's an excruciating challenge. first you want to hear from the families themselves. what do they think? what does the public think? we usually conduct one or two town hall meetings in boston inviting everybody who has an interest to come and listen and voice their views. then we look at what has worked in the past. 9/11, aurora, virginia tech, the indiana state fair, wind storm, building on what we've learned works in the past we come up with a protocol that will guide us going forward with individual claims. >> is there -- i hate to sound crude about it but there is something crude about the mathematics of this all. is there a certain figure that people who have lost a limb get? is there a certain figure that people who have lost a family
member get? how does it work? >> how much money is there? i mean, in every one of these funds there's a different amount. and you have to stop with the proposition there's only so much money for such horrific, tragic injuries and deaths. so you first decide what's the total amount that's available, how much should be allocated to those who lost a loved one? the three victims of the bombing and the m.i.t. police officer. how much should be then reserved for life altering horrific injuries as you say amputees? single amputees, double amputees. then you say, is there anybody else who's been in the hospital for weeks, maybe months that also should be included? and it sort of builds on itself, jake. there's only so much money for such terrible, life altering circumstances that guides the
decision making process. >> and an important part of this as you've said is you meeting with the families, talking about how this money cannot make them whole. what else do you tell the families when you meet with them? >> first of all, it is, when you meet with individual families, in confidence, private meetings, it's very emotional. mr. feinberg, i don't want the money. bring my son back. bring my wife back. bring my husband back. i can't do that you explain. i can only do a small thumb bl of your tragedy of the crisis you confront, provide some financial help that may help you move forward as best you can. you do not begin to try and place yourself in the shoes of these survivors. it's very, very emotional.
much more emotional than substantive. >> lastly, mr. feinberg, you've been involved in so many of these excruciating and horrible cases -- 9/11, aurora -- but you are actually from around here. you're pr brockton about 20 miles away from boston. does the fact that you are basically a son of boston make this even more difficult than perhaps some of the other cases? >> no. i don't think it makes it more difficult. i think it sort of reinforces my resolve as a high school graduate of brockton high school and the university of massachusetts in amherst. so i was raised in massachusetts and i'd like to think it's not a problem but rather sort of i'm very sympathetic to boston and to the commonwealth, the mayor asked me to do this, the governor asked me to do it. and i'll do it to the best of my ability. >> all right. ken feinberg, thank you so much
for joining us and good luck on this very, very difficult job. >> thanks very much. >> last week it was the site of a terrorist attack. today boyleston street right behind me is back in business as the people of boston reclaim their neighborhood. we'll take you to the spot where it all went down. and he's accused of killing babies that survived abortions. we'll have the latest in the kermit gossnel case, next. ♪ [ male announcer ] just when you thought you had experienced performance a new ride comes along and changes everything. the 2013 lexus gs. this is the pursuit of perfection. saved like $480 bucks.
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i'm jake tapper live in boston. the barricades on boyleston street right behind me are gone. scars remain of a city battered but not broken. the street, which had been a crime scene since the bombings, reopened early this morning. throughout the day it attracted everyone from mourners to tourists to those seeking a much needed return to normalcy or something close to it. today copley square turned from a crime scene back into the heart of boston. the blood has been washed off the streets but the wounds here are still fresh. bostonians gathered at the makeshift spontaneous memorial today to remember those taken from us by last week's horrific, senseless acts of terrorism. everywhere you looked, the names of the four who were killed. officer sean collier, krystle campbell, lingzi lu, and little martin richard. alicia capobianco works down the
street and she and her colleagues were back at work for the first time today but all came with flowers to pay their respects. >> in the aftermath i think it feels good that everyone -- we all came to work today and hugged each other which we normally wouldn't do, you know. everyone just feels closer now i think. >> fields of flowers piled up. american flags flooded in the spring breeze. abandoned running shoes hung from the fence. red sox caps lined the bricks. baseballs for little league's fallen martin richard. martin, this season is for you. this is where krystle campbell, the 29-year-old, was killed. that's where she worked at the summer shack. symbols of mourning. a rubber ducky policeman for officer collier. a symbol presumably left to honor lingzi lu. thousands of bostonians and others were drawn here today. hundreds left handwritten messages to the victims and to the city. amy faulk wrote, may their
memories be a blessing. what brought you here today? >> i'm a photographer as my hobby and i just really wanted to capture this moment. >> not just capturing it. you're part of it. >> really, unfortunately, this sad time has made me feel very connected to my city. >> at times the emotions were overwhelming. >> the orioles. we're from baltimore. >> people were here to help. a team of therapy dogs were on hand. a friendly face and a wagging tail to provide comfort. but copley square today was weighed down with a powerful sorrow. intangible feelings manifested in mountains of symbols. the grief literally piled up all around us. so many enduring images from the aftermath of the terrorist attacks here. a heart wrenching picture on the cover of this week's "time" magazine. a boy, his hair covered in blood, wrapped in the arms of a
first responder. "time" magazine tells us the boy's family has released a statement through a spokesman saying, quote, the family of the young boy pictured on the cover of this week's "time" magazine would like the world to know that their son is at home and doing fine. the family has been deeply touched by the outpouring of concern and support from around the world and ask that the media please respect their privacy and not contact them. they will not be commenting any further. more than 150,000 people are expected to show up for the kentucky derby so how do you keep a crowd that big safe after the boston bombings? and house republicans are accusing hillary clinton of signing off on a reduction of security before the benghazi attack. that's next. ♪
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welcome back to "the lead." i'm jake tapper in boston. other big stories we're watching while here in boston today. one day after a house republican report blamed hillary clinton for the attacks at benghazi they are demanding that president obama release the cable with her signature that they say proves it. house republicans say secretary of state clinton personally signed off on cuts in security at the diplomatic mission in libya before the attack last year that claimed the lives of u.s. ambassador chris stevens and three other americans. top house democrats are saying they were not consulted by republican chairman and they're blasting the report as partisan. last year more than 165,000 people were there. a record crowd. this year churchill downs is beefing up security for the kentucky derby following the boston marathon bomb blast. officials say with a crowd so large they'll need the fans'
help -- coolers, cans, fireworks, and cam corders now on the list of banned items. all changes after the terror attack in boston. we've heard weeks of horrifying testimony in the murder trial of a philadelphia abortion doctor but today when the defense got its turn it rested without calling a single witness. dr. kermit gosnell is accused of performing abortions on women well beyond the 24-week cut-off for legal abortions in pennsylvania. in some cases prosecutors say gosnell killed babies who were born alive. gosnell has pleaded not guilty. closing arguments are expected to begin on monday. as boston recovers from an appalling act of terrorism there will be some chilling reminders of the day our nation was thrust into the war on terrorism when the george w. bush presidential library opens to the public for the first time tomorrow in dallas. john king sits down with president bush for a rare interview that you can see
exclusively on an ac-360 special tonight at 10:00 p.m. eastern. up next, a poisoned letter addressed to president obama. now the man that police first took into custody, an elvis impersonator, says he was framed. we'll tell you who he thinks set him up. thank you orville and wilbur... ...amelia... neil and buzz: for teaching us that you can't create the future... by clinging to the past. and with that: you're history. instead of looking behind... delta is looking beyond.
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welcome back to "the lead." i'm jake tapper live in boston. it wasn't exactly lost in the headlines. we did report on the ricin laced letters sent to president obama, senator roger wicker and a judge in mississippi but the story just kind of went away after the fbi announced an arrest. it turns out the strangest twists were yet to come. any other week it would have been the top story. letters poisoned with deadly ricin sent to the president. two a senator, a county judge. evacuations at senate office buildings. panic in mail rooms across the nation's capitol. that is how it went after 9/11 when someone sent letters laced with anthrax to senators and media outlets but the ricin scare happened to coincide with the terror attack on boston and an explosion in texas that makes you want to duck every time you
see it on tv. 14 dead. hundreds hurt. entire blocks leveled. don't forget about the time to build an ark level floods in the midwest. amidst all this suddenly creepy and potentially deadly letters were mailed to our public officials thankfully intercepted well before they got within sneezing distance of those officials. at that point it was pretty much the least of the nation's worries. besides, authorities caught the guy or so they claimed. the fbi arrested paul kevin curtis of corinth, mississippi an elvis impersonator. it started to look as though the only number curtis would be doing for a while would be "jail house rock." ♪ everybody in the old cell block was dancing to the jail house rock ♪ >> then this happened. breaking news on a shocking turn into the investigation into licin laced letters. >> those charges have been dropped. >> a short time later curtis was released from custody.
>> that's right. elvis had left the building. the fbi admitted they did not have anything on him and they released him. >> when you've been charged with something you just never heard of ricin or whatever, i thought they said rice so i said i don't even right. >> curtis and his attorneys maintain he was set up by an acquaintance with a grudge. >> the government was able to basically find another suspect who we believe is the true perpetrator of this heinous crime. >> the fbi has not named as a suspect that other man jay everett dusky but dusky's lawyer confirms to cnn agents did search his home in connection with the ricin investigation. today they searched his former karate studio where he taught martial arts. curtis says there's been bad blood between them for some time now. have you had a long going feud with him? >> yes, several years. he's been showing up on my radar. people in town coming to me asking do you know this guy? >> dusky's lawyer says he once
worked for curtis's brother but hasn't mhad any communication since 2010. dusky does say he exchanged heated e-mails with curtis over this. >> i was very upset with him for posting a fake certificate on a website. he is not a mensa member. >> the high i.q. society. now life moves forward for curtis who knew exactly what his first move would be as a free man. >> find my dog muchow. >> muchow got away during the arrest. >> she got loose when homeland security swarmed in on me when i went to check my mail. >> the next time curtis laces up his blue suede shoes he can take comfort in maintaining this perfect track record. >> been to jail over 20 times and i've never been convicted of anything. >> men'sa indeed. so far the fbi is not commenting on what role if any everett duschke may have played in this increasingly weird investigation. that's it for