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King of Pop's Future; Interview With Yankees Manager Joe Torre

Aired November 20, 2003 - 20:00   ET


PAULA ZAHN, CNN ANCHOR: "In Focus" tonight: Michael Jackson arrested, handcuffed, booked, and now free on $3 million bail, as he faces child molestation charges. What lies ahead for the king of pop, his children, his career, and his freedom?
The fourth deadly bombing in Turkey in five days, a possible link to al Qaeda. Could attacks against Muslims cost al Qaeda support in the Islamic world?

Joe Torre, manager of the New York Yankees, winner of four world championships, I'll ask him about growing up in an abusive family and how he overcame his troubled past.

Good evening. Welcome. Glad to have you with us tonight. Those stories and more ahead, but there's a lot more to cover tonight. On the Michael Jackson front, I'll be talking with a man who was Santa Barbara's sheriff when Jackson faced a similar allegation 10 years ago about what is different now. And then there are Jackson's own three children. I'll ask a children's advocate what is likely to happen to them. And what will this mean for Jackson's life and career? I'll talk with someone who has known Michael Jackson since the king of pop was just 10 years old. And then Jeffrey Toobin will be along to take us through the legal process and Jackson's arraignment.

And Michael Jackson arrived just a short while ago in Las Vegas. He is in that black SUV that we're tracking right now. We are told that, normally, this is about a 10-minute trip from the Las Vegas Airport to where he is right now. He's in pretty close proximity to the Bellagio Hotel. Of course, no one really knows what his destination is tonight.

Now, the interesting thing to note, at one point, about nine minutes ago, we saw at a picture that looked somewhat menacing. It looked like people storming the car. And yet it was confirmed by a local reporter on the scene that it was actually well-wishers. And, at one point, Michael Jackson actually opened the window of the car and reached out to wave to some of those onlookers.

It's hard to really get a sense now, as he continues to move in traffic. We'll keep an eye on this. The Jackson case is "In Focus" tonight.

We're going to get right straight to our reporters covering the story. David Mattingly is live at the Neverland Ranch.

But we begin at the Santa Barbara's Sheriff's Department with national correspondent Frank Buckley. Good evening, Frank.


Michael Jackson is free on $3 million bail. As you said, he is now back in Las Vegas, arriving back there this evening by private jet, taking a private jet from Santa Barbara back to Las Vegas for the one-hour-or-so trip, basically ending the day the same way that he began the day.

At around noon local time here in Santa Barbara County, he arrived by private jet from Las Vegas, amid a great deal of anticipation and news coverage. But photographers were denied the shot of Jackson being taken into custody, because the jet pulled halfway into a hangar. Now, after that, it was a slow-speed convoy to the Santa Barbara inmate reception center, the level of news coverage reminiscent of O.J. Simpson's slow-speed pursuit.

The difference, of course, Jackson was already in custody at this point and facing different charges. At the Santa Barbara County jail, Michael Jackson emerged from a car in that convoy and walked into the inmate reception center. He was clearly handcuffed, but you could not see -- and though you could see that, you could not see his face.

Inside, however, his booking photo was taken, his face obviously visible. That's the point of a booking photo. And the booking procedure there taking some 30 to 45 minutes. Jackson posted some $3 million bail. While he was inside, his attorney said Jackson will fight the allegations of child molestation.


MARK GERAGOS, ATTORNEY FOR SCOTT PETERSON: He is greatly outraged by the bringing of these charges. He considers this to be a big lie. He understands the people who are outraged, because, if these charges were true, I assure you, Michael would be the first to be outraged. But I am here to tell you today that Michael has given me the authority to say on his behalf, these charges are categorically untrue.


BUCKLEY: And, again, as we show you live pictures in the Las Vegas area, Michael Jackson emerging -- or returning back to Las Vegas this evening. He's been driving through slow traffic there, well- wishers coming up to the vehicle, quite an incredible sight there.

Here, when he emerged from the inmate reception center, Paula, we can tell you that, as he came out, he waved to the cameras, flashed the victory sign. And he later issued a statement through a spokesman that reads in part: "The big lie against Michael Jackson is anchored in the most vicious allegation imaginable, one that resonates across every culture: the spectacle of harming a child. That spectacle invites outrage, and it should. But this spectacle is rooted in a lie. Michael said -- quote -- 'Lies run sprints, but the truth runs marathons. The truth will win this marathon in court.'" And, Paula, finally, Michael Jackson will be in court on the next occasion January 9 for his arraignment -- Paula.

ZAHN: But, Frank, you mentioned that Michael Jackson flashed that victory sign as he left the police headquarters. And I guess that could be read one of two ways, as supreme arrogance by those that believe these charges are valid and by those who think that Mr. Jackson is being treated unfairly as something that can be done to be somewhat disarming. What was the local reaction to that gesture?

BUCKLEY: Well, the local reaction was -- I think you said it well. Those people who believe if Michael Jackson see that as Michael Jackson fighting. Clearly, there are fans who believe greatly in Michael Jackson, who believe everything he says. And they believe that he is being wrongfully accused.

And those who, as you say, believe that he is potentially guilty of this see that as something that might be inappropriate, given the gravity of the charges. Recall that the Jackson camp felt that it was inappropriate yesterday, the sense at the news conference with the authorities here, they thought that there was too much laughter. They thought that the authorities weren't taking it very seriously. Some on the other side might say just the same thing in viewing that shot of Michael Jackson today.

ZAHN: Frank Buckley, thanks so much.

We call our audience's attention back to the right-hand part of the screen. And that's a live picture you're looking at now. But we're actually going to re-rack some tape to give you a sense of just what kind of greeting he got from some folks along the Las Vegas Strip. These folks storming the car, obviously reaching to grab Michael Jackson's hand when the window was rolled down, but Frank Buckley making it very clear, there are a variety of reactions to this arrest tonight, not all of the folks necessarily so sympathetic to what he's going through. about

David Mattingly is standing by. He is live in Los Olivos, outside Jackson's Neverland Ranch.


Some of that spontaneous show of support for Jackson that we see happening in the streets of Las Vegas right now is just starting to manifest itself here outside of Neverland Ranch.

We're going to zoom in to give you a look. There's a small group of fans that have gathered just beyond the driveway to Neverland Ranch here. They're holding signs that say: "We're behind you 100 percent. We love you, Michael Jackson." And they're playing some of his music.

In fact, last night, there was a young couple that I spoke that came here to the gates and to leave a sign of support for Michael Jackson. They had actually met him sometime in the past. They said they were out here at the gates. Michael Jackson drove up. He rolled down the window and said, hey, would you like to come in and have a good time? The two of them went in with him. And he allowed them to play all evening long in the amusement park that he has here on the grounds of his Neverland Ranch, an experience, of course, that they will never forget. And they will stand behind him.

I asked them, how much will they stand behind him, depending on how this goes? And they say, regardless of the outcome of these legal proceedings, they will be behind him 100 percent. Now, also tonight, we got a little bit of excitement a little bit earlier tonight. A dark Mercedes came racing through the gates, along with a couple of vans that were escorting it. At the time, we thought it might have been Michael Jackson.

But then, of course, we saw the video of Michael arriving in Las Vegas. So all the media here waiting to see what happens next out here at Neverland. Inside, though, it's very quiet, all the employees maintaining their code of silence, not saying anything to us unless they have to.

And earlier today, though, we did hear from one of the family members, Michael older brother Jermaine, who indicated that the family is very upset about this and they are standing behind him.


JERMAINE JACKSON, BROTHER OF MICHAEL JACKSON: I'm sick and F-ing tired of people speaking on my brother's behalf, on my family's behalf who do not know us. So you put these people on national TV, on international TV. And they say these things. And the public is saying, oh, wow, is he really like this?

My brother is not eccentric. We had an incredible, wonderful childhood. And what they're doing is bringing him down with the very thing that he loves, his children and family. My brother is about peace. They don't know us. But this will reveal itself, but I am sick and (EXPLETIVE DELETED) tired of everybody saying these things about my family.

And we will fight. And we will stand up. And everybody that knows this family around the world will support us, because, at the end of the day, this is nothing but a modern-day lynching.


MATTINGLY: And right here, we're seeing just some of the -- little bit of the activity we're seeing here at Neverland Ranch, a white pickup truck just driving by, keeping an eye on the perimeter, so to speak. There are so many people outside here trying to keep tabs on what's going on inside, Paula.

But there's one little sign here that sums up the barrier that's here at Neverland Ranch, this no-trespassing sign: "Violators will be prosecuted." So this split-rail fence is about as far as any of the information that's inside of the ranch is going to be going tonight -- Paula. ZAHN: And, David, nowhere is there more certainty tonight than the impact celebrity has on our culture as watch what is unfolding on our screen to the right of you, as we continue to watch onlookers in Las Vegas walk up to the car as it stops in traffic.

As we all know, this Las Vegas Strip isn't that long. This was probably just a 10-minute trip from one end of the strip to the other. And yet, we've been on this picture for some 25 minutes. And, obviously, the local traffic reporters are keeping an eye on Mr. Jackson in this black SUV.

David, I want you to give us a better sense of what investigators are telling you about what specifically they were looking for inside the Neverland Ranch?

MATTINGLY: Well, that's just the point about this investigation.

They are not getting into those kinds of details. We know that dozens of officers came in here and served the search warrant two nights ago. They would not say what they were looking for. They did not say what they found. We do, in fact, though, know that they did not find Michael Jackson, who was in Las Vegas at the time.

We also know that they served two other search warrants at other undisclosed locations in Southern California. But, again, they're not saying what they were looking for or what they found. So, again, this investigation, while they're being very strong in stating that they are going forward with this, they are not giving any details about what they're going forward with -- Paula.

ZAHN: David Mattingly, thanks for the update. We'll be coming back to you probably sometime in the near future.

This troubling case may prompt as many questions as it does answers. For example, could Jackson have been arrested 10 years ago? And what is next for his children?

Let's get to the first part of that question now with Jeffrey Toobin, who has a lot of explaining to do tonight.



ZAHN: There is a lot of confusion surrounding these dates we're hearing.

TOOBIN: Very true.

ZAHN: First of all, how unusual is it to arrest someone like we saw Michael Jackson get arrested today and then be told that the formal charges are forthcoming? And we've heard a couple of different sets of dates tonight.

TOOBIN: I've never heard of it before. This is very strange. I don't understand how you can bring someone in, handcuff them, release them on bail, fingerprint them, set an arraignment date without the presentation of formal charges.

ZAHN: So what's going on here?

TOOBIN: Well, I think what presumably is going on is that there was some understanding between the prosecution and defense, because this was a date, I guess, that Mark Geragos could be there, that the prosecution could be there, that they agreed to go through this process now without making him come in later.

It's simply odd. I suppose it may be done in certain cases in California. Certainly, no jurisdiction where I ever worked or have covered a story has it been done. But...

ZAHN: Are there any politics involved?


TOOBIN: It doesn't strike me as anything untoward, anything improper, because -- and he's not getting any particular benefit out of that. He's still getting arraigned January 9. It's a somewhat unusually long delay between arrest and arraignment. Usually, it's more like 30 days.

But because of the holidays, and I'm sure because of the lawyers' schedule, January 9 is not out of the question. So it's not any particular benefit to Michael Jackson. But it's simply odd that the public doesn't know really what he's charged with, even though we've had this enormous amount of attention.

ZAHN: We need to run here quickly, but one question before we get into more details on the other side. And that is the issue of how the law has changed from '93 and tonight what it is that investigators have this time that can be used that they potentially didn't use in 1993.

TOOBIN: Two big changes in the law, one very important for this case.

The law has been changed so that prior acts, similar acts of sexual misconduct can be introduced into evidence, even if the defendant was never charged with them. So this '93 incident where Michael Jackson was never charged, the prosecution can introduce evidence of that, even though there were no criminal charges coming out of it.


ZAHN: It doesn't even have to be a formal complaint.

TOOBIN: Doesn't have to be a formal complaint.

That law was passed largely in reaction to the case involving priests who were charged based on old conduct. Another aspect of it is the -- anyway, why don't we talk about that other one when we get back?

ZAHN: I think that's a really good idea.


ZAHN: And when we come back, we'll also be catching up with the sheriff who was involved in this case back in 1993. And maybe he will be able to explain to us tonight why similar allegations against Jackson were ultimately settled out of court.

We'll also be catching up with a woman who is a child advocate who will give us perspective on what might happen to Michael Jackson's children in light of today's charges?

We'll be right back.


ZAHN: Welcome back.

"In Focus" tonight: the Michael Jackson story.

We take you back to earlier today in Santa Barbara, California, when Michael Jackson was leaving the police headquarters after being formally charges. Actually, yes, this is as he comes out, flashing a victory sign at one point.

Joining us now is Jim Thomas, also from Santa Barbara, California, tonight. He was the sheriff there in 1993 when similar allegations against Jackson were settled out of court. And Gloria Gruber is president of Prevent Child Abuse California. She joins us from San Francisco.

Welcome to both of you.

Sheriff, I'm going to start with you first.

I don't know whether you saw the pictures of Michael Jackson as he left after his arraignment, but what is was your reaction to the fact that that was his demeanor as he left his booking?

JIM THOMAS, FORMER SANTA BARBARA COUNTY SHERIFF: Well, I don't really have a reaction to that, Paula. I only saw it in a replay. I suppose he has to respond in some way. And to him, that was a way to maybe give some confidence to himself, as well as his fans.

ZAHN: And to the right of you, sir, which you can't see, we continue to track his SUV, which appears to be moving pretty slowly in the Las Vegas Strip traffic.

Are you surprised by some of the reactions of his fans, not only in Santa Barbara, but in Las Vegas tonight? Many actually walking up to the car in traffic, Mr. Jackson unrolling a window and is actually shaking some of their hands. They're showing him some support.

THOMAS: No, it was really much the same in 1993 when we were looking at the charges at that time. We got a ton of e-mails from all over the world at the office. And there were people here in front of the ranch then as well.

ZAHN: I'm really curious, sir. After everything that's happened, do you feel vindicated tonight?

THOMAS: No. I think I feel more sad than anything else that we have to be at a position like this, where we're dealing in these kinds of charges. I don't think this is an issue of vindication. It's an issue of the law taking its place and going through its natural course.

ZAHN: You talk about the law taking its place. And, of course, there are a couple of different laws in place now than there were in 1993, when you pursued this case. Do you think this case will make it to trial?

THOMAS: I believe it will.

And speaking of the differences between last time, probably one of the biggest differences is the fact that the prosecutor now has the ability to halt a civil trial that could take place during the prosecution of the case. That's what happened last time. There was a civil case. It was settled prior to the case being filed in court. And as a result of the settlement, the victim at that time chose not to cooperate.

At this point, if there were a civil trial to start, then the prosecutor can go to the courts and ask that that be held until after the trial takes place for the criminal offense. And then a civil case could take place. The effect of that is that it would probably behoove a victim of a crime to go ahead and cooperate with the prosecution of the trial before filing the civil case after the trial.

ZAHN: And when that case was settled in 1993, did it break your heart?

THOMAS: No. It wasn't an issue of breaking heart. It was an issue of worry.

Had those allegations been true, then the concern was, would this happen to another child? And that's always been the concern. And with the allegations now being true, perhaps that's what has happened.

ZAHN: You just said had those allegations been true. Are you doubting the original allegations made back in the early '90s?

THOMAS: It's not an issue of doubt. It's an issue of going through the process and the trial and before a jury before you know if someone is guilty or not. So it would be inappropriate for me to say that he was guilty in 1993.

ZAHN: And, sir, based on what you've heard about this case so far, the length of the search of Neverland Ranch, how bad do you think things look for Mr. Jackson tonight?

THOMAS: Well, I don't know, Paula. But I have to feel that, with the prosecutor and the sheriff getting a search warrant, getting an arrest warrant, having that go public, having the news conference that they did yesterday, that I think that they probably have their ducks in a row and they feel fairly confident about what they have, at least to get to trial.

ZAHN: Well, Mr. Thomas, we appreciate your joining us tonight.

THOMAS: You're welcome.

ZAHN: And we are going to move along to Ms. Gruber right now to get a better sense of what is at play with Mr. Jackson's children tonight.

Welcome again.

What is the status of his children tonight?

GLORIA GRUBER, PRESIDENT, PREVENT CHILD ABUSE CALIFORNIA: His children are currently still with, I believe, Mr. Jackson. However, I understand that Children's Protective Services will probably get involved in this case.

Paula, the important issue here is, the children need to be protected foremost. And education is the key to protection. Children are our silent, innocent majority. They don't know what appropriate behavior is. So, if Mr. Jackson or anyone else, for that matter, is the person who is their trusted parent or adult who is teaching them what is appropriate behavior, his children may believe that inappropriate touching is proper.

So we need to get his children to the appropriate authorities, so that, one, whether or not they've been abused, they learn at this point what appropriate behavior is and what adults should teach them. Children, as early as 18 months, according to the American Pediatric Society, should be talk about their body parts.

In addition, we need to feel comfortable talking to our children about sexuality. We don't realize and we feel uncomfortable as parents and adults talking to children about sexuality. And it's very important, because the more children know and when they know what is inappropriate behavior, that they have the right to say no, that there's inappropriate touching, then they will be armed with the appropriate tools, so that they won't let this happen.

ZAHN: All right, Gloria, to keep this all in perspective, thank you for joining us.

We go back to Jeffrey Toobin for a moment now.

We have to make it clear these are charges and nothing more than that. Mr. Jackson's defenders are saying -- quote -- The big lie against Michael Jackson is anchored in the most vicious allegation imaginable, one that resonates across every culture.

TOOBIN: We know remarkably little about what the evidence is in this case. Whether there's any -- what this kid's testimony will be, whether there's any physical evidence, are there any witnesses, videotapes, photographs, we don't know. So we certainly don't know whether he's guilty.

ZAHN: And, in the meantime, we'll be keeping an eye on the shot in Las Vegas, traffic moving at a steadier pace now, Michael Jackson believed to be in a black SUV.

Jeffrey, stand by. We'll see you in a couple minutes.

Two other important stories to talk about, several deadly bombings in Istanbul. We'll look at a possible al Qaeda connection and what that could mean for Muslim support for the terrorist groups.


ZAHN: Tonight, officials are saying, the bombings in Turkey today bear all the hallmarks of al Qaeda. At least 27 people were killed, more than 450 injured when bombs went off outside the British Consulate and an HSBC Bank building in Istanbul.

CNN's Mike Boettcher joins us now from Istanbul with the very latest.

Good evening, Mike.


I'm about 100 yards in front of that HSBC Bank building where the bomb was detonated at 11:00 a.m. local time, 27 dead in those two explosions today, the other at the British Consulate here. Investigators are sure of two things, they say, now, that all of these are connected, the four bombings in the last few days, the two previous ones Saturday at the synagogue, and that all of them were conducted by people that had affiliation with al Qaeda.

Now, CNN has learned that one of those bombers at the synagogue here in Istanbul had travels that took him from Iran to Chechnya and Bosnia. And then he came back to Turkey about two years ago and acted almost as part of a sleeper cell, as did the other bomber. They suspect that they will find that that is the case with the bombers today as well.

Now, this evening, a senior Israeli investigator and military source said that there are two organizers of this attack who are also Turk who fled the country about three weeks ago. And they are being sought now around the world.

So, two things, all of these bombings connected, they believe, and all done by al Qaeda -- Paula.

ZAHN: That was suspected to be the answer. How did they nail that down so quickly?

BOETTCHER: Well, there were passports found. They had some quick work done in terms of knowing what the vehicles were that came in. And they traced those vehicles back, found out who had owned them. And then there was a progression of finding papers, talking to relatives. And they were able to piece this all together.

ZAHN: Mike Boettcher, thanks so much for the update.

Now, today's bombers are just the latest attack to strike predominantly Muslim countries. Is this a new strategy for al Qaeda? And, if so, does it help or hurt the terrorist organization?

Joining us from Massachusetts is terrorism expert Jessica Stern, author of "Terror in the Name of God." And here in the studio with me tonight, we're joined by Fawaz Gerges, a Middle East analyst and professor from Sarah Lawrence College.

Welcome to both of you.

So, Jessica, what do you think the impact on yet another strike affecting Muslims?

JESSICA STERN, TERRORISM EXPERT: Well, I think it's important to remember that these groups initially intended to attack in the Islamic world.

They were fighting secular leaders or those they considered to be insufficiently Muslim, from their perspective. So I'm not really sure I would say this is exactly new. It's sort of a return to their original intent. And the war between -- it's not just a war as al Qaeda would put it, between Islam and the west, but it's also a war within the Islamic world.

ZAHN: Let's talk about that. Do you believe it's a shift in tactics?

GERGES: I think the recent suicide bombings in the past year indicate an important shift in al Qaeda tactics, three points. I think al Qaeda's regional affiliates and hardened local militants are now targeting not only pro-western Muslim governments, but even soft Muslim and western targets. I think secondly this particular development is a result of what I call the gradual erosion of al Qaeda's central command and also, of course it's inability to strike at major operations in the United States. And finally as Jessica said, I think the theater of operation is shifting back to the Muslim world itself, and I think this is likely where we will witness more similar attacks by al Qaeda's regional affiliates and hardened militants.

ZAHN: I hear what you're saying, but I'm just kind of surprised that Farwaz believes that the al Qaeda is weakening. Particularly when it comes to ability to threaten here in the United States.

Do you see it the same way?

STERN: Well, not exactly. I think we need to look at al Qaeda as an organization that learns and evolves, and it has evolved into a new environment, which does require more and more cooperation with regional terrorists, and taking advantage of those who have passports, who can function as sleeper cells, or who have the right languages, that can fade into the background in the places where they hope to attack.

GERGES: I think what has happened is local and regional affiliates of al Qaeda are taking matters into their own hands with fewer options and diminishing political returns. Lets look at the suicide bombings in Saudi Arabia and Turkey, most victims have been Muslims rather than Christians and Jews, with this kind of brutal attacks will not endear al Qaeda to its constituency and will not bring it fresh recruits. And I think finally al Qaeda has succeeded in antagonizing at a Muslim public opinion not just western public opinion.

ZAHN: Fawaz Gerges and Jessica Stern, thanks for your insights tonight.

And coming up we'll have more on the arrest of Michael Jackson. I'll be talking with someone who has known the king of pop since he was a child.

Also we'll take you to Dallas, days away from the 40 marking of JFK's Assassination. We are going to see (UNINTELLIGIBLE) then and now.

Tomorrow we'll hear one of the few known eyewitness accounts of the murder written on the day President Kennedy died.


ZAHN: We're back to our big story tonight, and that is the progress of Michael Jackson landing about 1 1/2 hours ago in Las Vegas. We've been tracking the progress of his SUV as it has been making it's way through the Las Vegas strip. It's been interesting to see the kind of reaction this has created from onlookers. At one point, we actually had shots of people appearing to swarm the car, and they, based on the way we read it, looked to be fans of Mr. Jackson. At one point the window was rolled down, and Mr. Jackson waved to those folks. But tremendous conflicting reactions not only in Las Vegas tonight, but in Santa Barbara earlier today.

Let's go to David Mattingly who joins us live from Los Olivos, California home to Jackson's Neverland Ranch where you've had some similar kind of celebrity reaction, haven't you?

DAVID MATTINGLY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, just a little bit. We've had a couple handfuls of fans of Michael Jackson out here outside the gates of Neverland Ranch, holding up signs and playing his music. But again, it's a very small group. We're off the beaten path here. It's not at all like Graceland which is right out there on a major highway in Memphis. Here the ranch is down a two-lane country road, many miles away from the main 101 the state highway that moves north to south through here. And Jackson is very secluded behind the hills here in Southern California. There's no way you can actually see the house or amusement park he has back there. So if fans want to catch a glimpse of him, they have to do it just right here and those glimpses are very few and far between. But right now, perhaps because now everyone knows that Michael Jackson is not here, there's not a huge show of fans growing outside the gates here. But again a couple handfuls of people offering their unwavering support. As I told you earlier, some of the fan support is very strong. People I talked to last night, in fact, said regardless of how these proceedings come out, they will stand behind Michael Jackson. So for some people, he will always be the king of pop regardless of what happens -- Paula.

ZAHN: And David, thank you for that update.

Just want to remind folks who are just joining us now, why Mr. Jackson flew from Las Vegas to Santa Barbara in the first place. He was arrested and booked on charges that authorities described as multiple charges of child molestation. Formal charges won't be filed against Jackson, until sometime after Thanksgiving, that according the district attorney's office. That's a little unusual, according to Jeffrey Toobin, the way this all happened because sometimes the formal charges come on the same day you're booked. That did not happen in this case. And we have no idea Mr. Jackson is headed to tonight, as our cameras are trained on him proceeding in traffic in Las Vegas. The strip is pretty darn short. He could have been up and down the strip hundreds of times by now. We will keep you posted on his progress and final destination.

Now we move to the important sniper trial, John Allen Muhammad, which is now in the penalty phase. Let's go live to Jeanne Meserve, who is standing by in Virginia Beach, Virginia. She has been following the trials, where jurors today got a special glimpse into the convicted sniper's past. Good evening, Jeanne.

JEANNE MESERVE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Good even, Paula, they also heard closing arguments. It was an emotional evening as attorneys played tug of war over the jurors. Prosecutor Paul Ebert (ph) declared John Muhammad the worst of the worst. And said if there ever was a crime that deserved the death penalty, this is it. But defense attorney Jonathan Shapiro asked what would death accomplish and life would be living hell for Muhammad if he were put in jail. He portrayed Muhammad as a solid man and a loving father, whose foundation cracked when the family fell apart, something he said went terribly wrong he said. But the prosecutor James Willet (ph) responded that it was outrageous to portray Muhammad as a loving father, pointing out that the sniper victims amongst them had left 21 children. He doesn't care for children or human life or anything god put on this earth except himself, Willet declared, calling Muhammad a man who's malicious is and viciousness know no bounds. The jury of 12 begins deliberations tomorrow morning on what is probably one of the most momentous decisions of their life, whether John Muhammad should live or die.

Paula, back to you.

ZAHN: Jeanne, thanks so much for the update. We're now going to share a live picture with you right now coming from a concert hall in Dallas, Texas. Right now, the Dallas Symphony is rehearsing for two shows that will coincide with the 40th anniversary of President Kennedy's assassination. The Orchestra will preform a Leonard Bernstein work commissioned by Jackie Kennedy more than 30-years-ago. Let's listen in a bit.


For years, the city of Dallas bore the burden of the place where a president was assassinated, but much has changed since then including Dealy Plaza where Kennedy was shot.

Kelli Wallace explains.


KELLY WALLACE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): There is a tragic irony about the Dealy Plaza named after a prominent newspaper publisher, it was built to be the gateway to Dallas. But after 1963, it would forever be identified as something else, the site of a national tragedy.

(on camera): What is the main thing you hear from every person who comes here for the first time.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That's very easy. They say, oh, it's so small. It looks so small.

WALLACE (voice-over): It also looks almost frozen in time. The landmarks have not changed much since that fateful day. The Texas schoolbook depository and the sixth floor window where Lee Harvey Oswald is believed to have fired the fateful shots is now a museum dedicated to President Kennedy's life. And the grassy knoll and the fence near the overpass. But everything is not exactly as it was 40- years-ago.

(on camera): One of the huge difference is all of the people. There are so many people who come here.

(voice-over): They come to stand at the x in the middle of Elm Street to photograph the site of a turning point in history.

(on camera): What's your main impression when you see it for the first time?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Quietness, stillness.

WALLACE (voice-over): They come from all over the world.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: In Russia, we hear a lot about Kennedy.

WALLACE: And they come for answers.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: About 363 eyewitnesses and only two left alive. WALLACE: Listening closely to conspiracy theorists who sell their theories of the Kennedy assassination. More than two million people travel to the place once celebrated as the cradle of Dallas, now also remembered as the grave of its innocence.

Kelli Wallace, CNN, Dallas.


ZAHN: Major league manager reveals his personal struggle with the past. You are going to hear my conversation with Yankee Manager Joe Torre.


ZAHN: As manager of the New York Yankees, Joe Torre knows what it takes to win. He's led the team to four World Series titles and done it with style and grace that has earned the respect of players and fans alike. But Torre's success has not come easily. As a child, he says he lived in an abusive home. Torre is now sharing his personal pain in the hopes of helping others. And joining us is Joe Torre. Always great to see you. Welcome.


ZAHN: People look at you, you're the great American success story. I think they would find it hard to believe that you've been exposed to the kind of damage you've had along the way.

How raw is all of that to you now?

TORRE: Actually when I found out about all this -- you know, I was raised with it, but you lock it in a compartment, and you don't let it out. My wife Ali and I about eight years ago went to this self-help seminars in Cincinnati. My wife was pregnant with my 7- year-old daughter at the time, and all of a sudden I found myself talking in front of the a bunch of strangers about why I'm nervous, why I don't like loud noises, and all of a sudden it really stemmed back to my dad's presence in the house, and I realize at that time these were the reasons -- this was the reason I was feeling the way I was feeling.

ZAHN: So, you actually had a flashback of some of the abuse you witnessed in your home?

TORRE: Right. My mom is just the one that really took the physical abuse from my dad. And my abuse came from, you know, sometimes witnessing if, but knowing it was present, knowing that when he -- when I get home from school and hi car was in front of the house, I went to a friend's house until his car was gone. Because he used to work night, he was a policeman. And it was frightening experience being in the house, couldn't invite friends in, because if we made any noise, because he slept most of the morning and afternoon, because he worked those hours, and banging on the walls upstairs if we were making too much noise. So, it was never as relaxed as my daughter is right now in our home. ZAHN: Thank god.

TORRE: Yes, thank god is right.

ZAHN: Was there a point where you were almost broken by this fear?

TORRE: Well, you know, you didn't know if -- you knew it was your problem, you never allowed anybody to know about this. I have a friend I group up with, and when we had our fund-raising dinner last week, he told me after the dinner that I didn't know this went on, and we grew up together.

ZAHN: I'm wondering how this impacts the foundation you set up, to reach out to other children who are exposed to the same thing you had to deal with.

TORRE: We're not a service provider. You know, we want to come at it by creating an educational program to break the cycle of domestic violence and save lives. So, we're basically going to come out, talk like we are now, and letting people know even though I'm successful in what I do, I did come from a childhood that made me very nervous growing up, and that it's OK to talk about it. I think that's one way to have the youngsters maybe go to an uncle or go to someone who isn't in the house if they are living in an abusive house hold. And let people know that there's something that doesn't feel right at home.

ZAHN: Are you still angry about what happened to you?

TORRE: Well, I'm not angry. You know, to me I feel anything that you experience in the past, if you can use it, it can make the future better for you and other people. And that's where we are right now, and my wife Ali and I, and basically in my mom's name, Margaret, we established this foundation, along with my brothers and sisters, to basically educate and hopefully doing some good.

ZAHN: Well, it's very important outreach. Can I ask you one baseball question?

TORRE: Sure.

ZAHN: New report suggesting in a anywhere from 5 percent to 7 percent of all major league baseball players use steroids. Others out there are saying those numbers are way too low.

How bad is it out there?

TORRE: Anytime there's anybody doing something that could injure that I body, I have a concern with. However, 5 percent to 7 percent at this point in time is not overwhelming. But I think we have to understand that, for the reason people are taking it, if it's just for production, if you're found out to be taking it, it's going to diminish what that production means. So I think education again is probably something we need to attack this, from that angle.

ZAHN: We really appreciate your spending time with us tonight, Joe Torre.

TORRE: Thank you, Paula. If I might say, from my safe at home foundation if people could log on to, they can get more information.

ZAHN: That's a pretty easy one to remember. I think we can do that. Joe Torre, great to see you looking so healthy.

ZAHN: Thanks, Paula.

More on the Michael Jackson story. I'm going to ask you someone whose known him since he was just 10-years-old about whether he thinks the charges against him could be true.


ZAHN: We are still paying an awful lot of attention to what's going on in Las Vegas right now. The black SUV that you see off to your right in between -- well, there's a black vehicle in front and now a police car in back, believed to be escorting Mr. Jackson around town, on the heels on his arraignment today on multiple charges. We are told of child molestation, that according to the Santa Barbara DA's office.

Today's arrest of Michael Jackson is the latest chapter in an increasingly bizarre life. There was a time when he was indeed the king of pop, but as his album sales failed, Jackson became known not only for his music, but for his strange appearance and his behavior.

Joining us from Los Angeles right now is someone who has followed Jackson since the 1970s, J. Randy Taraborrelli, the author of the book, "Michael Jackson: The Magic of Minus." Jeffrey Toobin still along with us tonight.

Randy, I don't know whether you can see the same live picture we're seeing on the right portion of our screen. I have been so struck by the reaction of many Las Vegas residents, who when they had the opportunity when Mr. Jackson's car or SUV was stopped in traffic, actually swarmed the car and appeared to be showing him a great deal of support.

J. RANDY TARABORRELLI, AUTHOR: Well, you know, that really speaks to the power of Michael Jackson's celebrity, Paula. I mean, this is a man who is a history-making icon in our culture. And this is an amazing time and such a very sad time for Michael and for his fans and supporters, that there is something a little bit heart- warming about the fact that he does have this foundation of support and love and affection from the people who have followed him for so many years.

ZAHN: Well, I understand that loyalty, but Jeffrey, is there something just a little bit weird about this?

TOOBIN: This is a day on which he was charged with a crime that is the definition of loathsome. This is the worst thing we can say about someone, is a child molester. True, he's only accused, he wasn't proved anything, but on a day when he was charged with this horrible, horrible crime, you see people chasing him down the street trying to shake his hand. You see him giving a V for victory sign, blowing a kiss. We talk about treating celebrity defendants like everyone else. They are not like everyone else, and today proved it dramatically.

ZAHN: And Randy, you know Michael Jackson well. Do you understand why people thought that when he flashed the victory sign as he left his arraignment was an arrogant act?

TARABORRELLI: Well, this is not the real world, Paula. This is Hollywood, this is show business, this is celebrity. People don't understand the gravity of the charges. These are Michael Jackson's fans. You know, this is the public. You know, this is a very strange phenomenon, celebrity and fame. And Michael Jackson has been in our culture since we were kids. And so I can understand why people are willing to sort of dispel all notions of the serious gravity of the situation and just go for the celebrity aspect of it.

TOOBIN: It's not just that the fans, though, understand the gravity of the situation, he doesn't seem to understand the gravity of the situation, even after all these accusations. You know, he was giving that interview to Martin Bashir, saying, oh, no, I love children, there's nothing wrong with sleeping in the same bed.

ZAHN: He actually admitted that the child slept in the bed he slept in, of course.

TOOBIN: This is a guy who seems truly out of touch with reality, and he's about to get a big dose of it in this criminal trial.

TARABORRELLI: I definitely agree with Jeffrey, you know, that Michael has created the appearance of impropriety in his life, you know, in so many different ways when it comes to youngsters. I mean, this is not a day when I feel comfortable being critical of Michael because of my long association, but I completely understand, you know, there is confusion as to why he has insisted upon having young boys sleep over at Neverland and being so public about it, such as he was in the Martin Bashir interview, and it's because of that appearance of impropriety that there's such a sensation surrounding these allegations.

Not only that, but I have to say that 10 years ago, those allegations were very serious as well. And I also have to say that I feel very strongly that he deserves the opportunity to defend himself and the system needs to work at this point.

ZAHN: All right, Randy, we're going to have to leave it there this evening. Jeffrey Toobin, thank you for your perspective. That's it for us tonight. "LARRY KING LIVE" is next. See you tomorrow night.



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