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tv   America This Morning  ABC  September 4, 2013 4:00am-4:31am PDT

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making news in america this morning -- breaking overnight. a stunning development surrounding the man who kidnapped three cleveland women. ariel castro found dead. new details, just coming in. winning support. key members of congress who rarely agree with president obama, now back a strike on syria. as russian president putin sends a warning to washington. we're live in washington with the latest. and taking the heat. buildings burned. cars melting. a new skyscraper is being blamed. and pint-sized publisher. a young boy finds his calling. and at the age of 9. good wednesday morning. we begin with that breaking news from ohio.
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a truly stunning development. ariel castro found dead of an apparent suicide. >> the man who pleaded guilty earlier this year, running a house of horrors in cleveland, was to spend the rest of his life in prison. no one knew his life would end so soon. the last time we saw 53-year-old ariel castro was at his sentencing on august 1st. it was an extraordinary court session in which one of the three women castro raped and kidnapped and raped for years, summoned the courage to address castro directly. >> i spent 11 years in hell. now, you're hell is just beginning. i will overcome all this that happened. but you will stay in hell for eternity. >> reporter: if that eternity didn't start in prison, it is underway now. castro was found last night, hanging in his prison cell. he was in protective custody, in that cell alone because of the notoriety of his case. castro was checked on by prison staff every 30 minutes. but he wasn't on suicide watch. when he was found, cpr was performed before he was taken to a hospital.
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castro was pronounced dead just before 11:00 p.m. local time last night. >> i am not a violent predator. >> reporter: those were among castro's final public words. part of his bizarre, rambling, 16-minute statement at his sentencing. >> they're looking at me like a monster. i'm not a monster. i'm a normal person. i'm just sick. >> reporter: he claimed he had been sexually assaulted when he was a child. that he was addicted to pornography. and the sex he had with amanda berry, gina dejesus and michelle knight was consensual. >> i hope they find it in their heart to forgive me. >> reporter: unlikely, given the words of one of gina dejesus' relatives. >> to ariel castro -- >> reporter: translation, may god have mercy on your soul. dejesus' brother tells us his family is aware of the situation. and that, quote, they're all doing okay so far. obviously, there's a lot of questions this morning about how castro was apparently able to take his own life. ohio police are just beginning their investigation.
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we'll have much more on "good morning america." and now, to our other major story that we're following this morning. are the fast-moving developments in the syrian crisis. a critical senate vote on authorizing a military strike could come as soon as today. >> if approved, it would be a major victory for president obama, as he prepares to face an international audience. >> president obama arrived in sweden this morning. it's his first stop in a three-day european visit. abc's tahman bradley is joining us this morning from washington. good morning, tahman. >> reporter: good morning, diana. good morning, john. senior administration officials are back on capitol hill today, pushing for military involvement in syria. as the president reaches out to international partners overseas. president obama is in sweden this morning. but his mind is focused on home and winning the votes needed for a military strike in syria. while the president's away, the u.s. senate is drafting a use of force resolution that would
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authorize a limited military operation to punish the assad regime for allegedly using chemical weapons on its own people. the final language is being worked out. senate aides say it would set a 60-day deadline for the president to act. and would specifically restrict the use of u.s. ground troops. >> we all agree, there will be no american boots on the ground. >> reporter: secretary of state, john kerry, and other top administration officials return to capitol hill today to pitch the president's plan. democratic and republican leaders in congress say they're onboard. >> i believe that my colleagues should support this call for action. >> reporter: but it's not clear the president has the votes among the rank and file. >> we can't be a sheriff for the whole world, either. >> reporter: the public is also skeptical. six in ten americans oppose a missile strike in syria, if the u.s. is going it alone. >> we should not go to war with syria. we should just mind our own business. >> reporter: while mr. obama is overseas, he's trying to build more international support for action against syria. after the stay in sweden, the
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president is headed to the g-20 economic summit in russia. syria is not officially on the agenda. but it's likely to hang over the entire meeting. at the summit, mr. obama will face off against russian president putin who backs assad. in an interview overnight, putin warned the west against taking sides. but would not rule out backing action against assad if it's proved he used chemical weapons. putin says the u.s.'s evidence is not good enough. it's made up. diana? john? >> all right. abc's tahman bradley in washington for us this morning. thank you. now, to dennis rodman's controversial trip, saying he wants to show the world that americans can get along with north korea. the former hoops star is on his second trip to pyongyang. he plans to start a basketball league in north korea. rodman says the main reason for his visit is to hang out with his friend, whom he calls the marshal. he's, of course, referring to the present dictator, kim jong-un. >> we're here to visit him. see how he's doing. see how the family's doing. and just revisit the country.
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>> rodman says he's not planning to try to secure the freedom of american missionary kenneth bae. but bae's son says he is holding out hope. the power is almost fully restored this morning across venezuela, after a network failure plunged about 70% of that country into a blackout. the outage hit at about noon. it knocked out underground trains, traffic lights, water service for most of the day. venezuela's president is blaming sabotage for the power failure. but isn't providing more details. radiation readings at the crippled fukushima nuclear plant has spiked to 20%, hitting the highest level over the weekend. radioactive water is leaking into the pacific ocean. the japanese government is going to try to stop it with a massive wall of ice. it's a $320 million emergency plan that will literally freeze the contaminated water in its place. and thousands of firefighters in california, now, are gaining more control of the huge wildfire that's scorching the edge of yosemite national park. 370-square miles have gone up in flames so far. but the fire is 80% contained this morning.
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the smoke, however, is forcing schools to cancel football practices and other sporting events. the local fire chief says the fire may have started in an illegal marijuana grove. thousands turning out in key west to honor endurance swimmer diana nyad. this parade, featuring nyad riding in a convertible, carrying her support team. >> key west is where nyad came ashore after her historymaking swim from cuba. the feat took 52 hours and 54 minutes. >> she looks a little better there or the car than she did when she stumbled out of the water, right? >> but her message remains the same. if you think it, you can do it. time to check the weather across the nation. it's going to be mostly sunny and dry with the exception of the gulf coast. scattered thunderstorms stretching from texas to florida and the carolinas. and you can expect some rain, heavy at times, from arizona, north to washington state. >> another sizzler across the south, with temperatures hitting triple digits around dallas and the desert areas. but from the great lakes and the northeast and atlantic coast, it will be cooler with readings in
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the low 80s. the invites are out. we'll show you what apple sent out ahead of an upcoming event. and the subtle clue it contained about the new iphone. and charges dropped. the principal accused of shooting her husband is freed overnight. a new twist in this case. talk about a transformation. a woman's dramatic weight loss, caught on camera.
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reversing the usual post-labor day trend, gas prices are headed up. the average price for a gallon of gas is now $3.61. that's up 6 cents over last week.
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the biggest increase is in the midwest, where prices jumped 11 cents since just last week. analysts are speculating that supply issues and uncertainty in the mideast may be driving up that trend. the auto industry anticipating strong numbers today as sales surge across the country. analysts expect august figures, due out today, for new car sales to be the highest in seven years. new vehicles in august may have hit the highest monthly level on record. the real estate market also staying on the upswing. home prices soaring in july, up 12.4%. that's from a year ago. nearly 2% higher than june. but price growth is expected to taper off amid those higher interest rates and waning seasonal demand. and apple has sent out their invitations to the press for its event next tuesday, which is when the next line of iphones is expected to be unveiled. the invitations say, quote, this should brighten everyone's day, end quote. adding to the speculation that the new iphone will come in a variety of colors. and beginning next monday,
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chick-fil-a will be giving away breakfast items for free. that's right. that's what giving away means. the chain says all customers need to do is make a reservation online, selecting what item they want from a participating restaurant, along with the day and the time they wish to visit. the promotion runs through next saturday. get online. listen to this one from italy. the newest item to spread on your morning toast, spreadable beer. that's right. it's the creation of an italian brewer and a chocolate company. the spread is 40% beer. two versions of it. one with a light flavor. the other a bit stronger. no word yet on a distributor here in the u.s. i like a cold one from time to time. but spreadable beer, not working for me. >> i was going to say, i prefer my beer in a can, not on my bread. >> exactly. me, too. when we come back, finders keepers. a family treasure hunter. they take a dive and they come up with major loot. and close call. an incredible picture shows the aftermath of a major highway wipeout.
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president obama has arrived in sweden. air force one touching down a short time ago in stockholm. this is the president's first stop on a three-day european visit. mr. obama will beat with the prime minister and visit a technology institute before leaving for russia. all right. we're going to take a look at our weather right now. what you can expect during the morning commute. there could be flooding during that commute. on the lookout for the wet roadways all along the gulf coast, for sure. >> and the only place that might see some weather-related flight delays, right there, new orleans. a surprising turn of events for a california grade school principal accused of shooting her husband to death, then dumping his body in a field. >> now, this morning, she is out
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of jail and is not facing any charges, at least not yet. leslie chance has been locked up for more than a week and set to be charged with the first-degree murder of her husband, todd. but the district attorney says there's not enough evidence against her, at least not yet. and chance insists she's innocent. >> i don't know what they have. all i know is my client's position is she did not do anything wrong. and i will fight for that position. >> chance has many supporters, including her daughter, who says, quote, this is a tragedy for everyone involved, as we are grieving the loss of our dad. we are also supporting our mother in this time of uncertainty. that loyalty could be tested later today, when todd chance is set to be buried. we'll have much more on this story on "good morning america." hundreds of rescuers are working around the clock in an effort to find a missing firefighter in new mexico. 41-year-old token adams hasn't been seen or heard from since friday. he vanished while checking out a report of smoke in the forest near where he lives with his pregnant wife and child. no one is losing hope, though, because they say adams is an
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experienced outdoorsman. a sleek, modern skyscraper is going up in central london. it's shiny, concave and glass-covered. and it's literally becoming too hot to handle. the designers of the 37-story high-rise neglected to factor in one key element. when the sun is shining, the building produces a glare so hot it's capable of melts cars. >> someone was taking a photograph of my car, which i thought was strange. i walked up to it. i said, what are you doing? and they said, have you seen what happened to your car? i think it has to do with the reflection of the building. >> the building's developers have apologized and are paying for the damage. they're also putting up screens to reduce the heat until they can find a more permanent solution. >> how crazy is that? >> that's pretty crazy. an incredible time lapse video here, showing a woman's progress as she successfully loses weight. check it out. it shows her going from 220 pounds to 135 in 1 year. we don't know her name. but she says her high-fat,
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low-carb diet is 99% of the reason for her success. in fact, she says she virtually did no intentional exercise as she shed all those pounds. wow. meanwhile, some sleep experts now recommending afternoon snoozes. no more than 20 minutes long for a quick boost of alertness. they say you should take a nap in a chair, not in a bed if you want to avoid grogginess. and they warn if you're dreaming during your short nap, that may be telling you you're sleep deprived and you may have a bigger problem. when you hear talk of buried treasure, it's a fantasy in books and movies. >> this morning, a florida family says that for them the fantasy has come true. this past weekend, the schmitts struck gold, quite literally, finding $300,000 worth of gold coins and chains in the wreckage of a 300-year-old sunken ship off of florida's east coast. >> to be able to find that and have a pocket full of 1715 spanish treasure that hasn't been in the hands of a person in almost 300 years, it's -- it's a
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feeling of excitement, joy. >> and they say there's more gold out there in those waters. some experts estimate there could be as much as $60 billion worth. >> wow. >> i think we need to get out on the water. >> let's turn into treasure hunters. >> yeah. let's charter a boat. sports time. serena williams advancing to the u.s. open semifinals, beating a spanish opponent who never scored once. >> and in baseball, the pittsburgh pirates do something they haven't done in decades. here neil and stan at espn. >> good morning, america. welcome to our "sportscenter" studio here in los angeles. i'm stan verrett. this is neil everett. neil talks first. >> yeah. the pirates haven't had a winning season since 1992. come on now. in milwaukee, going to kill bernie brewer's buzz in the top of the first. two out get out, andrew mccutcheon, his 18th. pirates 1-0. game tied in the top of the ninth. travis snider unties it. the pirates are going to win 4-3.
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their first nonlosing season in 20 years. that's their 81st win. one more and they got winners. speaking of winners, we have the two best records in the a.l., eating fenway franks in boston. matt scherzer looking for his 20th win. looking but not finding. will middlebrooks, with detroit up 1-0 in the bottom of the fifth, gives boston a 2-1 lead. scherzer, seven innings, two earned. he had eight ks. he was good. jon lester was better. two on, one out. top six. matt tuiasosopo, windy. red sox, 2-1 winners. game three in that detroit/boston series is on espn tonight. eric ross promoted. they love that. >> he's going to get a raise. back to you. >> all right, guys. thank you. coming up next, "the pulse." an author celebrating a new five-book deal. he also happens to only be 9 years old. >> wow. welcome back, jon stewart. making his return from summer break in hilarious fashion.
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time to check "the pulse." and we start with what one driver in hawaii called a freak accident. but the truth is, he really could have been killed. >> there he is, with his girlfriend. check it out. the honda he was driving on a honolulu freeway. that red surfboard crashes through the windshield. >> the owner hasn't stepped forward to claim it just yet. >> wow. a 9-year-old rhode island boy getting ready for fourth grade homework and preparing to release his second book. colin naughton wrote his first book when he was 7. >> called "not so spooky halloween," it tells the story of a boy who becomes frozen with fear until he finds a hero. colin says he can identify. >> my favorite part about being
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an author is helping the kids. like, i'm a kid. and i have fears. like, everybody has fears. >> and he's so smart. so, now, colin has a deal to write three more books for the not-so spooky series. i'll read them. >> colin writes on his laptop every night. he's working on a his first novel about a superhero. >> okay. jon stewart is back on the air after a three-month hiatus directing a film in the middle east. >> the show opened with a skit showing oliver greeting a changed stewart. >> jon is back. hey, stewbie. hey. >> children of israel. >> what? this could take a while. >> hey, everybody. >> stewart has hosted "the daily show" for 15 seasons. >> oliver did a great job, by the way. he's probably going to get something offered sooner or later, don't you think?
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>> live from the kgo-tv broadcast center this is abc7 news. >> good morning at 4:28. thanks for starting your day with us. >> i am matt keller. looking back at the new eastern span of the bay bridge. it is looking pretty clear. >> few clouds. we will find out from meteorologist, mike nicco. >> a few clouds. make a few more than yesterday. nothing to worry about. no fog so far. it is dry on live doppler radar. the forecast as we look from the exploritorium and the lights on the bay bridge, normal highs from 76 in the north bay to 86 east bay, 71 to 80 at the bay.
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now good morning to sue. >> overnight road work to speak of on this wednesday. we go to san jose to check out the cheer roadways south 880 to 280 there are lane blockages. at walnut creek area north 680, same thing, a couple left lanes blocked until 5:00 ap. the golden gate bridge shows fog-free and clear sailing southbound into san francisco. kristen? >> we have to talk about the bay bridge. we are waiting to see if the commutes will bring the same delays we saw yesterday, delays that may have been induced by our excitement of the new span. amy hollyfield is at the toll plaza. >> it sound like our new bridge is slowing down traffic
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significantly hurting our commute. here is what it looks like: a beautiful bridge which is causing problems. people like to look at it. that is the theory the officers have. a commuter said the drive home usually takes 25 minutes but laugh night it took 80 minutes. c.h.p. officers blame it on the novelty of the new bridge. people are slowing to take pictures which is causing a backup. some admit there is so much to look at. >> people were honking when they saw me go a little slower. >> the bridge is simply beautiful. beautiful. >> the c.h.p. officers say you can get a ticket for driving too slowly and a ticket for distracted driving if they see you using your cell phone to snap a picture. they will be


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