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tv   Anderson Cooper 360  CNN  November 17, 2011 1:00am-2:00am EST

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people who knows exactly how much you are wth. >> you're a ruthless machine. >> i am ruthless when it comes to business. >> then you know how much you're worth. >> i would never discuss that. >> well, i'm going to get it out of her tomorrow night. i'm told she just signed a new $25 million contract. so that and many more chelsea handler secrets tomorrow night. that's all for us tonight. that's all for us tonight. "ac 360" starts now. -- captions by vitac -- we begin tonight keeping them honest with new developments in the penn state child sex abuse scandal. more evidence there's still much more to this story, still much more that people are covering up about what they knew and when they knew it. you're also going to hear tonight a mom's account of what she says her son went through and is now going through. he's the boy known simply as victim 1 in that now notorious 23-page grand jury report detailing jerry sandusky's alleged 15-year string of serial abuse. he was the first to come forward, this boy was, three years ago. that's why he's called victim number 1, though according to the grand jury he was not the first victim. he started the landslide that brought down sandusky, brought
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down head coach joe paterno, brought down penn state's president, the senior vice president for finance and business, and the school's athletic director. he's a brave kid, his mother says, but tonight he is afraid. afraid, she says, that people might find out who he is. afraid he might run into jerry sandusky, who is out on bail. afraid that sandusky might find -- might ultimately go free. but that's not all she's saying tonight. she's also describing to us the pressures she faced from people who tried to get her not to go to police. pressure from community members, from teachers she says, from people she trusted to put kids first and not defend jerry sandusky. you're going to hear more of her story in just a moment from her own mouth. also tonight, john walsh joins us from "america's most wanted." first, though, the shifting account of this man, penn state's wide receivers coach, mike mcqueary, a graduate assistant back in 2002. that's when he says he walked in on jerry sandusky raping a 10 or 11-year-old boy in an athletic building shower. according to the grand jury
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report, "went to his office and called his father, reporting to him what he'd seen." talking about mcqueary. then the next day, a saturday, he told joe paterno. about a week and a half later, according to the grand jury report, mcqueary was debriefed by athletic director tim curley and gary schultz, penn state's senior vice president for finance and business. schultz, by the way, also oversaw the university police. now, there's no mention in the 23-page report that mcqueary ever contacted campus police or any law enforcement. nor is there any mention that he tried to stop the rape or protect the children. yet now in an e-mail he sent former penn state teammates mcqueary is claiming he did both. "i did stop it," he writes. "not physically but made sure it was stopped when i left that locker room." in the e-mail, which was obtained by allentown's "morning call" newspaper, he goes on to claim, "i did have discussions with police and with the official at the university in charge of police." yet not only is there no mention of that in the grand jury
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documents, cnn contributor sara ganim reports her newspaper, the "patriot news," has seen a copy of mcqueary's handwritten account of events which he made for police in connection with the grand jury investigation. she verified it with a source close to that investigation. that handwritten account is consistent with the grand jury's report. in it mcqueary makes no mention of intervening during the alleged rape or talking to any police officers in the days that followed. what's more, a university spokesman tells the "morning call" they have no record of mcqueary filing a police report at that time. that of course raises questions about his credibility. but it also raises much bigger credibility questions about top penn state officials and the university's lack of believability, lack of transparency, and lack of accountability. for starters, the judge with connections to jerry sandusky's charity, today she was dealt with. she was replaced. but that's a pretty symbolic and small step all things considered. why. this is important. now that we're 11 days into this story and some of the details may be getting hard to follow. if the allegations against
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sandusky are true, at least, at least seven children were sexually abused after the first reported incident. seven children since the first time university officials were told about it. and for reasons not entirely clear chose to look away. now, we're going to keep asking questions on this until those reasons get clear. yesterday our drew griffin went looking for answers. he didn't get a lot of cooperation. he joins us now from state college. drew, what did you find out today? >> reporter: you know, anderson, yesterday we told you about this exemption that penn state has. they don't have to release documents, which are usually public just about everywhere else in the united states of america. so today we went looking for the people, those officials who should have, would have, and most likely did know about the allegations against sandusky way back. the three officials in particular, former university president graham spanier, the former university counsel, a guy by the name of wendal courtney, and the former police chief,
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whose name is tom hartman. way back in 1998 these three people, according to the grand jury, most likely did know about the allegations that that mother was bringing forward, that sandusky was showering naked with her son. and in fact a police investigation was launched, but that former police chief decided, according to the grand jury report, to abruptly end the investigation. we went looking for him today. he works at an architectural and engineering firm now, which has an office not far from where i'm standing. this company does a lot of business with penn state university. this is what happened when we went inside trying to find him. >> is mr. harmon in? >> he is not. >> he's not in? >> he works out of his office. he works out of his home. >> he works out of his home. >> yeah. >> does he have an office number? i mean, a number that if someone at this office -- >> we can't provide that information. sorry. >> reporter: you can't provide that information? >> no. no.
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>> reporter: via e-mail, tom harmon did eventually get back to us. this is what he said, not much, he just cannot discuss this matter, citing an ongoing investigation. we did go to his home, by the way. neighbors say, anderson, he moved. >> did you also try to speak to the legal counsel for penn state who held that position during the 1998 investigation? did you talk to him? >> reporter: tried. wendell courtney, private lawyer now in town. he was university counsel in 1998 when these allegations surfaced. he actually gave a blessing for that initial investigation into sandusky. oddly enough, he went on to become the attorney for the second mile foundation, jerry sandusky's charity. we did go to his office. we walked right through the front door, asked to see him. he was in. but he wouldn't come out. instead he sent out an attorney out and that attorney basically told us to get off the property, they would not talk to us.
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and just we also did try to talk to the current police chief. that was yesterday. this is the current police chief of the university. take a look at this. >> reporter: is the chief in? >> i'm not sure. turn the camera off. >> reporter: turn the camera off, right? we didn't turn the camera off. we sat there for about an hour. we were told then the chief would come out and talk to us. he didn't. he was behind the counter talking to us via cell phone. i was trying to ask him questions. take a look. he wouldn't answer any single question i gave him. >> are you concerned at all that -- that -- that members of your department may have helped cover this thing up? >> reporter: again, no answer from the current police chief, from the former police chief. this is all because, as we reported last night, penn state has an exemption.
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they don't have to tell us a thing, anderson. >> an exemption that they lobbied for at the state. there were other agencies involved here, including the pennsylvania department of child welfare. is there no one talking there either? >> reporter: yeah. we've tried to track down all these various people. the investigator in 1998, a guy named jerry lauro, he was working for protective services, he reached out to me. this is what he said in a text message, anderson. "i am sorry, i cannot say anymore as i am bound by confidentiality. good luck with your investigation." and then this. "please do not contact me again." i should also mention, anderson, we tried to track down the former university president. he still lives in the president's mansion here at the university. private road, private residence. we've left two messages. we've asked the university why he still lives here. we just are not getting any answers. >> drew, keep at it. appreciate it. thanks very much, drew. now victim 1's story.
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you know, i do think it's important in all of the coverage of this not to lose sight of the victims here, the alleged victims, the people that we know about, stories that more people may be coming forward. but as of now, eight victims, alleged victims, identified by the grand jury report. victim number 1 was 11 or 12 when he met jerry sandusky, may have been 10, through the second mile program. according to the grand jury, sandusky took the boy to pro, college sport events, gave him gifts including golf clubs, a computer, invited him to his house for sleep-overs. that's when the grand jury report details the alleged abuse, sandusky getting into bed with the boy, saying he was going to crack his back and then fondling him, eventually having oral sex with him numerous times. there were other alleged incidents at the high school where so-called victim one was a freshman and sandusky volunteered on the football coaching staff. so he was volunteering on the coaching staff of this young man's high school -- or middle school. i spoke with the young man's mom
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a short time ago. we've altered her voice because as we mentioned at the top both she and her son say they're living in fear. >> how are you? how are your son doing? >> well, we're doing okay, i mean, i guess as well as can be expected. i don't know. >> i understand your son heard jerry sandusky's interview on nbc on monday night. what was his reaction? >> he was upset. he was very upset about it. he said -- i didn't watch it -- i watched it when it was on, and he watched it after that. and he said that -- he cried, and i said, why are you crying? he said, because i'm afraid he might go free. >> he's afraid that sandusky might go free? >> yeah. >> what was your reaction to it? >> i thought it made him look worse. >> does it make any sense to you at all when he says that he was
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showering naked with boys, that he -- it was just horseplay? >> no. no. i don't think that showering naked with any little boy would be horseplay. >> i've read the grand jury testimony about what your son has said, testified happened. i mean, assuming it's all true, he's really a hero because had he not come forward and broken the silence we wouldn't know about all these other alleged victims. >> oh, he definitely is a hero. he definitely is. he's a brave kid. and he really, really -- you know, for a long time we thought -- he thought that he was the only one, you know? he thought that we were basically just on our own. and then as we -- as more victims came out and, you know, he started feeling a little bit better about that.
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but, you know, it's been -- >> explain -- i just want to play one of the things that sandusky said and get your reaction to it. >> are you a pedophile? >> no. >> are you sexually attracted to young boys? to underage boys? >> am i sexually attracted to underage boys? >> yes. >> sexually attracted? you know, i enjoy young people. i love to be around them. i -- i -- but no, i'm not sexually attracted to young boys. >> the answer to that question has raised a lot of eyebrows, just the way he answered it. what did you think of that? >> i think that -- i don't exactly know what to think about that other than, i mean, it seems to me that that's -- he's a sick individual. he's sick. he can't even -- i see it as him
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not even being able to straightforward answer the question. >> you think the straightforward answer would just be to say no, no, i'm not attracted to young boys. but he didn't do that. >> no. no. >> when did you start to realize something -- something was troubling your son? >> well, i guess it was a long haul of clues in his -- in his behavior. he went from like being a perfect 1-2-3 magic child to being ornery and being arrogant and mean. and we had a lot of different -- you know, we had disagreements. several times i asked the school to, you know, talk to him. and they had said, oh, he's just -- there's no man in my house. he's just trying to -- trying to
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stake his place in the world. he's just -- that's what teenagers do. but when he started withdrawing from -- he started asking me to lie to him when he called the house and things like that. >> after a while, he didn't want to see sandusky anymore and when sandusky would call he would say -- he would ask you to lie. he would ask you to say he wasn't around? >> yes. >> and that started -- that made you suspicious? >> yes, very suspicious. then out of the blue one day he was sitting at a computer and wanted to look up sex weirdos. >> he wanted to do a search about sex offenders, or sex weirdos, that's what he called them? >> yeah. he asked me what the website you get on to look them up was. and i told him it was megan's law. and he said, well, how do i type it in? i gave him the web address. he typed it in the computer. i said, who are you looking -- who are you looking for? he said, jerry. i kind of like -- i kind of froze. i was like, wow. what are you looking him up for? and he's like, i don't know.
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i just want to see if he's on there. i said, well, why would he be on there? do you have something to tell me? and he was like no. don't they put those kind of people on there? i said you need to tell me what's going on? he and he said that i don't know, sometime he just acts weird so i just wanted to see if he was on there that's all and he said i'm going outside and he went and played. and that was the end of that conversation. >> so he actually wanted to search under jerry sandusky's name on a site for sexual offenders? >> yeah. >> wow. >> yeah. so that was like the big clue to me. >> we're going to have more of my conversation after the break, including the lengths that she says sandusky went to to try to have access to her son. >> i never gave my permission for him to take my son out of class or to leave the school with my child, but he did. >> let us know what you think. we're on facebook, google plus as well. add us to your circle. or follow me on twitter @andersoncooper.
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i'll be tweeting some tonight. later our legal panel weighs in on mike mcqueary's credibility as a witness, joe paterno's story that he knew nothing about jerry sandusky's alleged transgressions until 2002, and a lot more. also john walsh of "america's most wanted" joins us. also a suspect in custody accused of opening fire on the white house. we'll have the latest of what we know on this man. the details ahead. ♪ ♪ [ male announcer ] everyone deserves the gift of a pain free holiday. this season, discover aleve. all day pain relief with just two pills. [ buzzer ] getting a no contract htc wildfire s from virgin mobile for $199.99 at radioshack. so right. ♪
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before the break you heard from the mother of one of jerry sandusky's alleged victims, called victim 1 in the grand jury report. she talked about how she says her son first broached the possibility that something was very wrong and that sandusky was not what he seemed to be. now her antenna was up but as you'll hear her say nothing could prepare her or her son for what was yet to come.
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>> jerry was also volunteering at your son's school helping coach the football team. >> right. >> and he had a lot of privileges at the school, so he could call students actually out of class? >> i guess. i really think that without parental consent he shouldn't be able to do that. but i never gave permission for him to take my son out of class or to leave the school with my child. but he did. >> and how soon after your son said that he wanted to search for jerry's name on a sex offender list, how soon then did the story come out finally? >> i would say within a few days after that. >> do you know what jerry was doing when he called your son out of class? >> i have no idea. >> but he would meet with him? >> i guess, yeah. >> and finally, how did you learn what had happened? >> the school -- i called the
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school and i had brought it to their attention about jerry calling him out of class and things like that, and the school was -- they said, oh, well, you know, it's not uncommon for him to do that. and i said, okay, well, let's just look at this from an educational standpoint. because i had already talked to them prior to that and told them that i had a suspicion of something but i didn't want -- i didn't want to accuse anybody of anything. but i just -- something was off. and i said, you know, i told her, i said, i'm not going to accuse him of that because, you know, i just -- what i want you to do is i want you to end him taking him out of class, number one. and for number two, i want you to pull him down to the office and just ask him. just ask him how he feels. that's what i told them to do. >> and what happened when they did that? >> well, when they did, the principal had called me and -- in tears and she was crying, i
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could tell she was crying, and told me to get to the school right away. so i went to the school and met with the guidance counselor and the principal. and when i did, they told me that my son had said some things about -- that there was a problem with jerry and that he didn't know -- he didn't really admit anything at that point that was -- he just said he thought he needed to tell somebody or it would get worse. >> that's a really brave thing for him to have said. >> and then -- yeah, it is. and then the principal said, oh, you know, jerry has a heart of gold. >> the principal said that to you, that jerry has a heart of gold? >> yes. yes. and that -- and i said, listen -- i was very upset at this
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point. i was extremely upset. and i was basically yelling at them that they needed to call the police. i said, i want you to call the police. call children and youth. you know, i said call the police right now. and i said it like three times. call the police right now. and they said no. you need to think about -- they said i needed to think about the ramifications of what would happen if i did that. >> what do you think they meant by that? >> i don't know. i guess -- i'm assuming what we're going through now. i don't really know. >> what do you want to see happen to jerry sandusky? >> i want jerry sandusky to go to jail for the rest of his life. >> would that be justice? >> i don't even know, to tell you the truth. at this point i don't even know. >> i'm glad you were willing to talk and tell us what you've been through and your son as well. thank you. >> you're welcome. late this evening we got a response from the alleged
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victim's school system, the district's lawyer david lindsay saying he doesn't have time to respond to specific allegations but he did send the following statement. "due to the ongoing nature of the investigation and prosecution of jerry sandusky, it would be inappropriate for the keystone central school district to provide any comment in this regard at this time." the statement continues, "nonetheless, the keystone central school district has been and will continue to be fully cooperative with authorities in this matter." let's bring in our legal panel. senior legal analyst jeffrey toobin, mark geragos, and sunny hostin, legal contributor for "inside edition" on trutv. talking to this alleged victim's mom, i couldn't help wonder if her son had never come forward these allegations against sandusky could still be under wraps. >> i mean, it is just so astonishing how many people knew some piece of this story and yet it was only 11 days ago that he was arrested. i mean, the years that have passed since 1998 and, as you have pointed out, the number of children who apparently have been abused since 1998, it just makes you crazy.
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to think about it. >> mark, i've enjoyed having you on the program the last couple of nights from -- because you keep, you know, from a defense lawyer's standpoint, you keep raising very good points. you bring up the mcmartin preschool and the rush to judgment back then. the mother also said that hearing sandusky's interview on nbc news made her and made her son more determined than ever to testify against him. do you think that interview has already kind of backfired on the defense? >> well, the interview with him i think was not helpful. we said that the other day. the question that i have is, there's two other stories. i know that it doesn't pertain directly to the interview you just had, but my understanding is that the attorney general has now filed something saying they're not ready to proceed on the preliminary hearing against the school president, which i find to be fascinating to me. why is it that if the a.g. was in such a hurry to prosecute this thing that they're not ready to proceed? and i have, you know, other
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questions as to why it is at this point that people are saying this happened, that happened, i listened to that interview and he was saying -- the mother was saying, i was going to -- i begged them to call the police. well, why didn't the parents call the police? i'm as perplexed as everybody else, but for a lot of other different reasons, you know? there is a phenomena of piling on at a certain point. i don't know. you don't know. none of us know what the real truth is here. but there's a lot of things that strike me as very peculiar. >> she said she actually -- when the principal wouldn't call the police, that she took her child and they immediately went to child welfare and that's how the police were finally involved. to hear, sunny, this mom claim that she was basically being pressured not to go to the police or at least to consider that jerry sandusky has a heart of gold by a school official is pretty surprising. >> you know, it's not surprising to me because, again, child sex crimes are always shrouded in
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secrecy. people don't want to talk about it, touch it. they start thinking about themselves and their personal exposure, the exposure of the school, because they let jerry sandusky take this child out. all sorts things come into play instead of what is best for the children, what is best for the victims. so actually, i'm not surprised that the mother was pressured. i'm not surprised that she didn't immediately call the police because people don't want to believe these things happen. >> well, then how do you explain that supposedly she said call the police, screaming at them three times and then she didn't call the police or the father didn't call the police? >> but what she -- >> it doesn't make a whole lot of -- >> she's saying what she did is she said to her child right then grab your backpack, we're leaving and literally she didn't even drive home, she drove straight off to child welfare and actually a child welfare officer met her at her house. >> why didn't -- right. why didn't she call 911? why didn't she call the police? why was she screaming at
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somebody else to call the police? if she was a -- >> mark, that's not fair. >> that isn't fair. >> why weren't the police called? you know, you can say it's not fair. there's been nothing fair about what is the coverage of this case. >> i mean, she went to child welfare. i don't think that's significantly different from going -- >> exactly. >> -- going to the police. if i could just raise -- >> she didn't scream go to child welfare, go to child welfare. >> can i just raise one more thing that i think is very significant today? mcqueary's e-mail saying in fact he did go to the police, i think this is a classic example of why prosecutors tell their witnesses don't talk about the case, don't give interviews. it's frustrating to us. he is generating material for him to be cross-examined at trial. >> exactly. >> he appears to be telling a contradictory story. >> we've got to go timewise. jeff toobin, thanks. sunny hostin, mark geragos. up next john walsh on how pedophiles think. >> they never have any remorse. they're great liars.
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they work themselves into society. lots of them are respected and admired by the people in that society. but they're still pedophiles, and it's a compulsion. >> also ahead tonight, newt gingrich on the defensive about his former relationship with mortgage giant freddie mac. he criticized democrats for taking money from the company. freddie mac paid him close to $2 million. we have the raw politics ahead. who ate my cookies and milk? oh, brother. hey, guys. ni-i-i-ck. oh... i thought those were put out for me. i did it again. no worries, nick. [ sighs ] say, nick, you must be busy this holiday. oh, yeah, with all the great savings we got going on, it's been crazy. ooh, i got to dash away. customers lining up. ♪ [ male announcer ] this holiday, chevy's giving more. ♪
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new clip tonight from that stunning interview jerry
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sandusky did with nbc's bob costas. when sandusky made the surprising decision to speak out about the charges against him and when his lawyer made the decision to let him get a window open. ever since people have been asking is it the window into the mind of a wrongly accused man or a monster? first, and you heard it just before the break, the moment that raised the most eyebrows. >> are you a pedophile? >> no. >> are you sexually attracted to young boys, to underage boys? >> am i sexually attracted to -- >> yes. >> -- underage boys? sexually attracted? you know, i enjoy young people. i -- i love to be around them. i -- i -- but no, i'm not sexually attracted to young boys. >> that's the clip you're familiar with, the rambling answer that got people talking. now there's more to talk about. here's the new clip from the nbc interview. bob costas asked jerry sandusky did he think his behavior fit the classic pattern of a pedophile. here's his response. >> i didn't go around seeking out every young person for
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sexual needs that i've helped. there were many that i didn't have -- i hardly had any contact with. who i have helped in many, many ways. >> joining us is john walsh who's seen his share of predators and people falsely accused at the same time. he's the host of "america's most wanted." now in its new home on lifetime, starting december 2nd. john, we just heard this new clip nbc hadn't released that sandusky said there were a lot of people he had helped that he had no contact with. he said many, not all. what do you think of that? >> i think it's appalling, actually. i mean, the charity second mile has done some really wonderful work. but it was his private hunting grounds. he's the classic pedophile. always in denial, no remorse, don't think they do anything wrong. and i've caught so many of them, anderson, you and i have talked about them for years. they never have any remorse, they're great liars, they work themselves into society. lots of them are respected and admired by the people in that society.
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but they're still pedophiles. and it's a compulsion. >> did it raise your eyebrows when you heard him answer, you know, when costas asked him if he was sexually attracted to young boys, i mean, i don't like to put myself in someone else's shoes, but you would think the obvious answer is no, no, of course i'm not or being outraged about it. his answer was -- i mean, it kind of went meandering until he finally got around to saying no, he's not. >> it really is appalling. there's no other word for it. if he was innocent -- and i don't think he is, that's my personal opinion. and because we live in this politically correct society we have to say he's an alleged pedophile, which he is. but if he was innocent, the first thing he would say is, this is outrageous, i love and respect young boys and i work with them. first thing he should have said was no. but that's the classic pedophile, anderson. >> it does seem like -- and i've done interviews with pedophiles and shows about them -- there are the ones who grab kids off the streets who we hear about the most in the headlines. but it's the ones who are groomers, who, you know, look
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for a family maybe where there's not a dad around or a mom in need and a child who's lonely or on his own a lot. explain what parents should be looking out for. i mean, because we all know about the people who grab kids into cars. but the people who insinuate themselves into children's lives over time, that seems one we often don't hear about. >> well, statistics have proven out over the years that the vast majority of children, at least 80% of them, are molested by a trusted authority figure or somebody they know or a relative. and what's really appalling is that this guy was on the radar for 15 years, reports were made to the charity that he founded. there were reports made to penn state. that's also appalling, that he was allowed to continue. it's all so appalling. >> i just talked to the mother of victim number 1, and she was saying that when finally her son started telling school officials and she was called in and the
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son began to indicate there was a problem with sandusky according to him, one of the -- the principal said to her, you know, you need to think about what you want to do because he's got a heart of gold, jerry sandusky. has a heart of gold. often it seems like -- do you think because of his reputation, his standing in the community, that people may have looked the other way or ignored instincts they had? >> oh, without a doubt. they're great at isolating themselves with the children, and this guy was so respected by so many people in the community. i think they were all in denial, anderson. i always say that -- that mother was right. because boys don't tell till later. they're embarrassed. they feel they've lost their self-esteem. they feel that there's no one they can trust and tell. i really believe that there's a big, huge cover-up here because there were lots of incidents, lots of reports, and this guy was on the radar for 15 years. >> do reporting laws need to
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change? >> oh, absolutely. absolutely, anderson. first of all, in three states it's a felony if you don't report. it's a misdemeanor in every state. it should have been reported. that coach who saw it in that locker room, anderson, here's a great big tall guy, 6'4", choking and sodomizing a boy. should have been stopped there. the cops should have been brought in that night. and this university should have never let this guy retire and still bring boys into the locker room at 9:30 at night. it's just appalling. >> john walsh. appreciate your -- you coming on. thank you, john. >> thank you, anderson. well, one final note. throughout the evening we've been using the name victim 1, which is how he's referred to in the grand jury report. obviously, he's an alleged victim until and unless jerry sandusky is convicted of a crime. still ahead, a major break in the white house shooting investigation. a 21-year-old man in custody tonight. more about him and how close the bullets he allegedly fired came to the first family.
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also tonight raw politics. new reporting on how much newt gingrich was actually paid by freddie mac and what he was hired to do. [ sneezes ] [ buzzer sounds ] bringing home a verizon samsung stratosphere for free from radioshack. so right. whoa, wait. whoa, whoa. wait a minute. what? just like that? did you even see the allstate? it's cute. what is it? great insurance. you get accident forgiveness, deductible rewards, safe-driving bonus checks, plus a free lifetime membership in good hands roadside assistance just for calling. sold. tiny tow truck -- works every time. shop less. get more. make one call to an allstate agent. to bring you a low-priced medicare prescription drug plan. ♪ with the lowest national plan premium... ♪ ...and copays as low as one dollar...
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in raw politics tonight, new questions about newt gingrich's ties to freddie mac. on the campaign trail in iowa the presidential candidate was repeatedly asked about work his firm did for the mortgage giant for eight years. >> i was approached for strategic advice. i was glad to offer strategic
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advice. and we did it for a number of companies. and gingrich group was very successful. >> well, the gingrich group is the consulting firm the former speaker of the house start after leaving congress in 199837 cnn confirmed between '99 and -- freddie mac paid the firm between $1.6 million and $1.8 million for two separate consulting stints. a lot more than gingrich acknowledged. during a debate last week, he said his firm was paid $300,000. this is the same freddie mac whose risky lending practices led to the financial crisis. the same freddie mac gingrich has turned into a punching bag in the current presidential campaign. the same freddie mac he's railed against ever since his consulting contract ended. >> i'm very saddened that john mccain hasn't had the nerve and the coherence to go nose to nose with obama and force obama to give back the money he's taken from fannie mae and freddie mac, forced him to fire franklin raines, who after all got $90 million in six years while totally mismanaging fannie mae. >> that was gingrich in 2008,
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clearly implying that freddie mac's money is tainted. what he didn't mention in that interview is that the gingrich group was paid handsomely by freddie mac during the years leading up to the crisis. so what exactly was the firm being paid to do? gingrich first told reporters that freddie mac hired him as a historian. cnn has talked to four people who worked at freddie mac at the same time as gingrich who told us that's not accurate. one told us gingrich was paid to help freddie mac with its political strategy, emphasis on political. gingrich now says he was a strategic adviser. he denies he ever lobbied for freddie mac. we asked freddie mac. they told us gingrich was a consultant and did not lobby for them. it's a fact gingrich was never a registered lobbyist. but many of his critics and his opponents say that's a matter of semantics. gingrich has said he'll make his freddie mac records public to the extent that he can. instead, late today his campaign released a list of what they called a fact sheet about gingrich's ties to freddie mac. they said that is all they will be releasing. joining me now political contributors ari fleischer. you can follow him on
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twitter @arifleischer. and hillary rosen. how big a problem is this for newt gingrich? >> anderson, i think this is neither a tempest nor a teapot. i think there's any number of people who worked for these companies and gave strategic advice to them. which is what newt acknowledged he did. he said he didn't lobby for them. i think it's problematic the 2008 interview we are said president obama should return the money. obviously, that's a little inconsistent with him keeping the money. but you know, on the day that the debt topped $15 trillion, who newt gingrich worked for, i don't really think is a significant issue in this debate. there's a lot bigger issues this country is wrestling with. >> hillary, there's nothing wrong with lobbying if that's what gingrich was in fact doing. do you think this is a big deal for him? >> vof course it's a big deal because it just piles on top of year after year of newt gingrich's saying one thing and doing another. and this just proves it. for two years he made it his number one priority to trash president obama and barney frank and other democrats for their handling of freddie mac and
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fannie mae. and here at the same time he was taking money from them. this is the same guy basically who said that he cheated on his wives out of a huge amount of patriotism. this guy's completely not credib credible. but the big picture here is really that the republicans are so desperate to find an alternative to mitt romney that you know, newt gingrich despite all of this keeps rising in the polls. herman cain actually hasn't sort of fallen off the radar screen yet. and this is all because of mitt romney really, that he's just not a good enough candidate for them. and that's why ari is sitting here today saying oh, maybe this is really a fine thing for newt gingrich to be doing, to be lying about how much money he's taken and the like. it's because -- >> you know, anderson -- >> -- they just don't want mitt romney. >> i love to hear that because, if mitt romney has all of those problems, why is he beating barack obama in all of the polls? and frankly -- >> he's not. >> -- back on the substance of the question you asked me, anderson and that you asked hilary, i think it's far worse that fannie mae and freddie mac
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have taken so many trillions of dollars that in effect was taxpayer money, taxpayer guaranteed money, and squandered it on giving the loans to people who had no means of paying back the loans. and that in many ways is what triggered the 2008 financial crisis and has not been addressed by president obama in any shape, way, or form. >> but hold on. >> whatever millions newt took dwarfs the damage those institutions have done. now the right question is, what reforms are necessary to fix fannie mae and freddie mac. and at least newt is on the right side on those issues. now he's seeking reforms. >> let's talk substance for a minute. >> that's the bigger picture that is a more healthy thing for the country's economy. >> those institutions actually weren't fixed under ari's former boss george bush, and when barack obama came to office he and the democratic congress actually did pass new laws that reined them in and considerably changed the way they do business. so i don't know what ari is talking about. but the real issue for newt gingrich i think is -- the real issue for newt gingrich is can he credibly go on week after
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week and change his story every day? today it was i'm going to release the contracts, then tonight it's no, i'm not going to release the contracts. last week it was i was for a single payor. then it was, well, we shouldn't have single payer. you know, we've got to repeal obamaca obamacare. i mean, newt gingrich is just not a credible candidate. as smart as he is, he's almost too clever by half. >> ari, i'll let you respond, then we've got to go. >> on the issue of president bush, president bush repeatedly pressed for reform but was blocked actually by barney frank and by former senator chris dodd. so that's why it didn't get done. >> not true. >> but there's another issue about newt and that's going to be debated throughout this campaign. there's the sharp newt and then there's bombastic newt and we'll still see which one comes out in the course of this election. that still is an open issue. >> ari, hilary rosen, i pleasure you being on. thank you. coming up, a man arrested in connection with friday's shooting in the white house. we're going to tell you what led to his arrest and where the bullets were found at the white house. that's next. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 let's talk about fees.
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that's about a half hour outside of charlotte, north carolina. here's what we know right now. high winds are destroying or damaging more than a half dozen homes so far. heavy weather doing serious damage all across the south. washington next. oscar ramiro ortega-hernandez is scheduled to appear in court tomorrow in connection with a shooting incident at the white house friday night. two bullets were found at the white house. one hitting an armored window. a law enforcement source says a weapon registered to the suspect was found in a car nearby. and stocks took a dive in late trading today. the dow 191 points. the s&p lose 2g 1. >> rebecca black is back and we just couldn't wait till friday to put herric critics on the "riduculist." ♪
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time now for the "riduculist." and tonight we're adding all of rebecca black's critics. that's right. you know who you are. for those rare individuals who don't live their whole lives online and instead do things like, i don't know, read books or go outdoors, also for our executive producer who just today dared to ask the question who's rebecca black, a little refresher. ♪ friday, friday ♪ getting down on friday ♪ everybody's looking forward to the weekend ♪ ♪ partpartying, partying ♪ partying, partying ♪ fun, fun, fun >> sorry. that was rebecca black's song
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"friday" which burst into our consciousness, oh, it was only eight months ago. it's not just about friday, though. the lyrics helpfully point out which days of the week come directly before and after friday. and there's also a section about the decision-making process involved in deciding whether to sit in the front or the back seat of a car. it's a fun, fun, fun, fun little song. and yes, now it will be in my head for the rest of the night. anyway, the internet nearly imploded after then 13-year-old rebecca black came out with that song. millions upon millions of people watched the video. there were a ton of parody videos online and late-night talk shows made fun of them. a lot of people call it's worst song in the history of music. which is ridiculous because that honor according to multiple sources belongs to the "we built this city on rock and roll" song by starship. but i digress. rebecca black was largely seen as a one-hit wonder to the tune of i wonder how this horrible song ever saw the light of day. but guess what, critics. rebecca black is back. she has a brand mu song called "person of interest." here's a taste of the new video. ♪ there's a crime scene on the dance floor ♪
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♪ ring the alarm ♪ police tape on the front door ♪ ♪ and you are ♪ a person of interest >> crime scene on the dance floor. police tape on the front door. you are a person of interest. make no mistake. rebecca black has matured as an artist. i'm guessing all the people who blasted her for "friday" are eating their words right about now. and so they should. so you should. the reaction to "friday" was outrageous. people wrote absolutely horrible things online about rebecca. she even got death threats, which police took seriously enough to investigate. much to her credit, rebecca took it all in stride. she posted this video about what her summer was like. >> over the summer i got to do some amazing things that i never thought could happen. i got to join katy perry on stage and sing "friday" with her. i got to attend the "glee" premiere. and i also won a teen choice award. >> yeah. at