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Wildfire Burning in Big Sur; Snowden, Criminal or Hero?; One Possible Winner of Mega Millions; Barbara Walters' Fascinating People; Obama's Second Term Blues

Aired December 17, 2013 - 23:30   ET


BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN ANCHOR: Good evening. I'm Brooke Baldwin. And welcome to "ICYMI," showcasing CNN's best reporting all day and any breaking news tonight.

We have a lot to get to. First, show me the money. We will show you the numbers hot off the presses. They were just chosen just a short time ago. And we're waiting to go hear if anyone has won what may just be the biggest Mega Millions lottery jackpot ever.

Also tonight, fire tearing through the iconic Big Sur area. The flames devastate the home of the town's fire chief. At only 5 percent containment, what will be next?

And the best Beatles song you have never heard until now.




BALDWIN: You want to hear the rest of that, don't you?

Stick around. All of that and a lot more IN CASE YOU MISSED IT. Now let's get started.

And we can begin with the breaking news tonight. You know, somewhere in the United States right now someone could be very, very rich.

So what if you have a better chance of dying in an asteroid apocalypse? Odd smods (ph). If you haven't seen the Mega Millions lottery numbers yet, you still have about 10 seconds left to dream.

The numbers were announced just about a half hour ago in what may be the biggest jackpot in history. At last count it was sitting right around at $636 million. But that total may well go up given the many thousands of tickets sold just today.

Time is up. You're looking at them. These are the lucky numbers IN CASE YOU MISSED IT.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: To win that jackpot you must match these five white balls plus that gold Megaball. Now let's see if I can make you a multi-millionaire tonight. Our first number tonight is 8, that's followed by 20. Up next we have 14. That's followed by 17. And the final white ball for this Tuesday evening is 39.

Now for the Megaball, tonight's Megaball number is 7.

Tonight's winning numbers are 8, 20, 14, 17, 39 and the gold Megaball is 7. Now no one matches all six numbers Friday's jackpot will be $950 million.

Play on, America.


BALDWIN: I should tell you tonight there were already reports on Twitter of one winner in the San Jose, California, area. But until lottery officials actually make an announcement, we won't know for sure. That could happen in the next hour or two hours.

Also tonight, more breaking news from Reno, Nevada. Earlier this evening, a gunman opened fire at a hospital killing one person, injuring two others and then killing himself.

The shooting happened in a medical office adjacent to Renowned Regional Medical Center. That is the largest hospital in northern Nevada. SWAT teams went room to room looking for a second gunman, then ultimately declared the building secure.

Some of the reports say one of the injured is a doctor. And both of those injured are said to be in critical condition tonight. No word as far as a motive goes or an identity of the shooter or victims here.

We will keep you updated.

Now to the shooting at Arapahoe High School and chilling new details tonight on what happened at the centennial, Colorado, school. Authorities say the shooter, Karl Pierson, used this indelible marker to write a phrase in Latin right on the inside of his forearm. The Latin phrase was this, "Alea iacta est," which translated into English means, "the dye has been cast."

And he also wrote numbers on his arm that correlated with the room numbers of the library and also specific classrooms at Arapahoe High.

Officials believe this is evidence that he had a detailed plan, that he never carried out. He did shoot an innocent bystander, a young woman, 17 years of age, Claire Davis, who remains tonight in critical condition in a coma. And then just 80 seconds after he entered the school, he shot himself.

In California, a wildfire that is burning in the state's scenic Big Sur area, nearly 500 firefighters are battling this fire which has now burned through hundreds of acres in the Pfeiffer Ridge area of Los Padres National Forest, this is near Highway 1. More than a dozen homes have been destroyed. And in this cruel twist of fate that also includes the home of Big Sur's volunteer fire chief, Martha Karstens. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MARTHA KARSTENS, CHIEF, BIG SUR FIRE BRIGADE: The irony doesn't escape me. And again I try to set an example for fire clearance. And we do the best we can. But it's a situation that just -- it was too much. Too hot, too fast, too soon. If I had other resources perhaps my home would still be there.

But until it happens to you, you feel sorry for them. But literally I went out to fight a fire, I had my purse, I had my cell phone and my glasses. And I didn't know I was going to be trying to save my own home.


BALDWIN: Now she has empathy for so many others tonight. The biggest obstacle for firefighters right now is the wind.

Dan Simon has been at the fire all day. He joins me by phone tonight.

And, Dan, it's unusual hearing about a California wildfire in December. In terms of containment, does the 5 percent number, does that still hold tonight?

DAN SIMON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: That's where things are right now, Brooke. But first of all, you know, I can tell you, I've covered so many wildfires on the West Coast. And this was the first one I can personally remember that's happened in the middle of December. And the reason why we're seeing it is because of the dry conditions out here.

This is one of the driest years on record for this particular region. And it's what's caused all these homes to burn. It's believed that there have been at least 15 homes that have been destroyed. There's no official tally yet but that's what most believe right now.

As you said in terms of the acreage, we're talking about 550 acres. Now that is not a huge wildfire in the context of what we typically see on the West Coast with these wildfires. But what makes this especially noteworthy is that it's happening in a very famous iconic place like Big Sur. And of course that it's happening this time of year -- Brooke.

BALDWIN: Big Sur, absolutely gorgeous and awful hearing this is happening there, not only to the fire chief's home, all these other homes being threatened.

Talk to me tonight, Dan, just about conditions. You mentioned the wind. How will tomorrow and the next couple of days look?

SIMON: It's supposed to get worse tomorrow. And that is always the big concern with the weather. And if the winds pick up. So firefighters definitely trying to get a handle on things before the conditions worsen.

The other challenge is that the terrain is very steep and it's inaccessible. And that's why they're using the helicopters to make water drops in a situation like this could be really key -- Brooke.

BALDWIN: OK, Dan Simon, thank you so much.

Also six U.S. soldiers killed today in a helicopter crash in the remote region of Zabul, this is in southern Afghanistan. Military investigators, they are now looking into this report that this helicopter came under enemy fire after it crashed. That's still not entirely clear as of now.

Early reports cited engine failure as a cause, but investigators are desperately trying to determine if the six members of the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force might have come under mortar fire. There was one survivor of that crash.

And while many think the war there in Afghanistan is winding down, we should remind you tonight there are still more than 42,000 still serving.

Edward Snowden, criminal or hero? I know. It depends on who you ask. But this is clear. He is willing to offer up more of what he knows. Today he reached out to Brazil's government, perhaps offering up a deal.

CNN's chief national security correspondent Jim Sciutto reports.


JIM SCIUTTO, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Six months after fleeing spying charges all the way to Russia, today Edward Snowden made an offer back across the globe to Brazil. Help fighting NSA surveillance in exchange for political asylum.

In a letter addressed to the Brazilian people Snowden writes, quote, "Many Brazilian senators have asked for my assistance with their investigations of suspected crimes against Brazilian citizens. I have expressed my willingness to assist."

Snowden appears emboldened by the ground-breaking decision by a federal judge Monday ruling the NSA program that sweeps up Americans' phone call records is likely unconstitutional. In a scathing ruling, Judge Richard Leon wrote, quote, "The government does not cite a single instance in which analysis of the NSA's bulk metadata collection actually stopped an imminent attack."

Throughout, U.S. officials have justified the NSA's mass surveillance program saying they have been successful averting acts of terrorism. 54 separate acts to be exact. Although over time that figure has evolved from 54 plots --

REP. MIKE ROGERS (R), HOUSE INTELLIGENCE CHAIRMAN: Fifty-four times this and the other program stopped and thwarted terrorist attacks both here and in Europe.


GEN. KEITH ALEXANDER, DIRECTOR, NATIONAL SECURITY AGENCY: Forty-two of those 54 were terrorist plots.

SCIUTTO: To 13 plots or cases involving Americans.

SEN. PATRICK LEAHY (D), SENATE JUDICIARY CHAIRMAN: Would you agree the 54 cases that keep getting cited by the administration were not all plots? And of the 54 only 13 had some nexus to the U.S.? Would you agree with that? Yes or no?


SCIUTTO: Senator Patrick Leahy, the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, told me the administration has overstated the program's successes.

LEAHY: Well, I believe the NSA and General Alexander and those speaking for him greatly exaggerated. We went from 54 which became sort of the symbol until we get down to the substance which was really one.

SCIUTTO (on camera): Now U.S. officials have specifically cited a small number of other terror plots averted, including one involving a Yemeni extremist who plotted to bomb the New York Stock Exchange, and other members of the Senate standing behind this program even after the court ruling, including Senator Diane Feinstein, the chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee. She released a statement saying, quote, that she believes it is constitutional and helps keep the country safe from attack.

Jim Sciutto, CNN, Washington.


BALDWIN: Jim, thank you.

Next on ICYMI the trailblazing journalist Barbara Walters. Here's a question. What is her biggest regret? She shares that answer in an unusually personal and powerful interview with Piers Morgan. That's next.


BALDWIN: And welcome back. We are live tonight on ICYMI. I'm Brooke Baldwin.

More breaking news here. As we reported at the top of the show about this big Mega Millions drawing north of $630 million. We are now hearing there is at least one winner.

Alex Traverso calling in, lottery spokesperson out of the state of California tonight.

And, Alex, tell me what you know.

ALEX TRAVERSO, SPOKESPERSON, CALIFORNIA STATE LOTTERY: Alex I know we've got a winner in California. And we know that somebody is going to be putting a lot of money in their bank account pretty soon. (LAUGHTER)

BALDWIN: That is indeed true. But tell me, how do you know that? Tell me what you know about this particular winner tonight.

TRAVERSO: Well, basically what we know is that the winner purchased their ticket at a retail location in the Bay Area in San Jose. And we know that because our gaming vendor shoots us an e-mail with the winning locations about 15, 20 minutes after the draw actually happens. And that's how we saw San Jose pop up on the screen.

BALDWIN: OK. So as we are talking, I'm talking live to many of you watching, ICYMI in California, I hope you have not crumpled up those lottery tickets tonight because one of you in the bay area has officially won in San Jose.

And to Alex, since I have you, just procedurally speaking, because this is fun and we can -- we can talk about that one person who won, what does that one person need to do tonight?

TRAVERSO: They should sign the back of that ticket as quickly as they can and make sure they come and see us in our East Bay District Office tomorrow morning at 8:00 a.m. is what they should do. They should get on in there and claim that prize.

BALDWIN: So what if this person says, you know what, I don't really know if I want to come public with this? I'm winning all this money and I don't want all these people coming out from under these rocks to come and find me and take my money. When do you have that option? How does that work?

TRAVERSO: Well, their name's public information so they have to come forward and claim their prize and their name will be public record regardless of that. And that's basically their obligation is that their name is public information and where they won the ticket and how much they won.

BALDWIN: That is incredibly exciting for someone in the bay area tonight.

Alex Traverso, calling in from California. Thank you very much. And to whoever won, congratulations.

I'm Brooke Baldwin. IN CASE YOU MISSED IT back in a moment.


BALDWIN: For years, no surprise here, Barbara Walters has been an idol of mine. We have all watched her big interviews with world leaders and entertainers, ordinary people doing extraordinary things. But sadly this is the last time she will be telling us about the 10 people who have fascinated her the most this year.

The queen of television talked to CNN's Piers Morgan tonight about the 2013 version of her "Most Fascinating People." And then the interview took a personal turn. She began talking about, of all people, Miley Cyrus.


BARBARA WALTERS, ABC NEWS: Miley Cyrus. Miley Cyrus and the tongue?


WALTERS: I do, too. And she -- and this is a girl who I interviewed five years ago. She was 16 years old. She was a kid. And she has made that transformation now and she is a very big star. And she's being criticized for being, you know, too suggestive, taking the clothes off. But I give her great credit for making that transformation. And I thought she certainly should have been on the list. My favorite --


MORGAN: Well, let's hear a bit -- let's hear a bit --


MORGAN: Barbara, before you go, let's hear a bit from Miley, now that you've mentioned it.

WALTERS: OK. Great. OK. Here's a little bit from the show.


MILEY CYRUS, SINGER: I think I want that in the time that it needs to be. You know, I don't think I realized what 19 truly is. And I got engaged at 19. And I definitely wouldn't change being engaged. It was so fun wearing a fat rock for a few years. But now I just feel like I can actually be happy. I wait for those moments of silence when I'm just at my house by myself.


MORGAN: Have you ever twerked, Barbara?

WALTERS: You're not going to see it tonight. You know, in my bedroom by myself.

MORGAN: In 1977, you spent 10 days traveling around mountains with Fidel Castro and held his gun in your lap. And there were widespread rumors given how extremely glamorous you were at the time that there may have been a little flingette between you. Any truth in that?

WALTERS: Oh, please. You know, as I've said to people, if Walter Cronkite had interviewed Margaret Thatcher, would you have said, obviously there's hanky panky? You know, I had spent a lot of time with Fidel Castro. I find him -- talk about fascinating, I found him fascinating. But no, there was -- there wasn't even flirtation.

I thought that he was a most interesting man. I know the things he did that were really quite terrible. But we did spend a good deal of time together. It would not have happened today. I wish I could do another interview, but I think he's -- I think he's beyond that stage.

Can I tell you what I regret when you're talking life? I regret not having more children.


WALTERS: I regret -- I would have loved to have had a bigger family. I have one daughter. I don't have brothers and sisters. I have a sister that I loved, and she was developed mentally challenged, I guess, is how they -- how they put it. I wish I had a bigger family.

In terms of my career, beyond anything I expected. And I don't know exactly what it's going to be like when I stop working. I hope you'll ask me back, even when nobody else does.


BALDWIN: Barbara Walters. I tracked you down tonight, meeting her truly an honor.

We have to take a quick break. But when we return our best video out of the hundreds of videos that feed into CNN from all over the world each and every day. The most poignant pictures next IN CASE YOU MISSED IT.


BALDWIN: Welcome back to IN CASE YOU MISSED IT. I'm Brooke Baldwin. And, you know, second terms can be tough for presidents. We all remember the challenges former president Clinton faced trying to navigate his second term amid a sex scandal. And then how about former President Bush who struggled with what seemed like an endless war in Iraq?

Well, for President Obama, the tale of the second term blues proves no different.

CNN's Brianna Keilar has more on a year this president would like to forget.


BRIANNA KEILAR, CNN SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): President Obama spent two hours today with 15 leaders of the country's biggest high tech companies, many of whom had backed his re-election.

The president playing defense, explaining the disastrous rollout of and trying to ease concerns over the NSA spying scandal, which has touched many of their companies.

The president at one point joking with a CEO of the movie site Netflix admiring the efficiency of the lead character in that company's hit online Washington drama "House of Cards."

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I like Kevin Spacey. This guy is getting a lot of stuff done. KEILAR: If Obama is envious of Spacey's character, perhaps it's because he hasn't had much success himself this year. His approval rating above 50 percent this time last year is now near an all-time low. A steep dive in just 12 months. And a new poll shows more Americans trust Republicans over him to deal with the all-important issue of the economy.

Critics on the left say the president also squandered the advantage Democrats had after the government shutdown with the administration's poor handling of Obamacare.

AMY WALTER, THE COOK POLITICAL REPORT: Where I see the president sort of ending up is in a place of meh. You know, he's not really good, he's not really in a bad place. He's just sort of there. And it's not helping his party.

KEILAR: The White House trying to change that narrative continued retooling the president's staff today. Appointing a former Microsoft executive to oversee improvements to the health care Web site and reaching out to those high tech executives behind closed doors. Advisers realize if he doesn't turn things around quickly he could drag down fellow Democrats in next year's midterm elections.

WALTER: The only question now is whether it gets worse for him because then he loses control of Congress and he's forced to spend his last two years in office just simply playing defense.


BALDWIN: Brianna Keilar reporting tonight. No doubt a concern for Democrats as they look ahead to the 2016 presidential election.

And now to the video wall. These are the strongest videos that come in that we cull through each and every day in the last 24 hours. So let's begin tonight in North Korea where President Kim Jong-Un marked the second anniversary of his father's death, longtime leader Kim Jong-Il. And in typical North Korean fashion, you have tens of thousands who attended this memorial service where they made sure to applaud and to cheer for their dear leader who just days earlier had his own uncle executed.

Pope Francis celebrating his 77th birthday today with a big cake and some local kids. And then in typical fashion, the people's Pope had another celebration that was entirely atypical. He had this birthday breakfast with a group of homeless men who joined him inside his Vatican residence. They had been sleeping on pieces of cardboard outside the Vatican gates when one of the Pope's staff apparently approached them, invited them inside. The men attended mass with him before sitting down to eat.

And finally this video from Syria's second largest city, this is Aleppo. And what you're seeing, these are civilians rescuing this man buried under rubble here. President Bashar al-Assad's army dropped dozens of barrels field with explosives all over the city including this building. This attack much worse than originally thought killed more than 100 people, 28 of them children. Which brings me to this heartbreaking image from that same attack on Sunday. It is absolutely devastating. It is a Syrian man in tears carrying the body of a child.

We'll be right back.


BALDWIN: And here is what I will leave you with tonight. This is something extra special for all you Beatles fans all around the world. You may have heard there are 59 previously unreleased tracks. These familiar Beatles recordings that suddenly, poof, appeared on iTunes. What you may not have heard is that one of the tracks is a song you have never known until right now.

You like it? "Bad to Me" is the name that.

That does it for me tonight. I'm Brooke Baldwin. Thank you so much for watching ICYMI. We will see you back here tomorrow night.