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LEGAL VIEW WITH ASHLEIGH BANFIELD
Bieber Arrested in Miami Beach; Widow Speaks Out After Movie Theater Shooting
Aired January 23, 2014 - 11:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ASHLEIGH BANFIELD, CNN HOST: Justin Bieber busted, hauled off to jail, arrested, DUI, resisting arrest and drag-racing. All this barely a week after the big raid at his L.A. estate.
And also ahead --
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And just to think that in the blink of an eye, my whole world got shattered into a million pieces. And now I'm left trying to pick them up and put them all back together.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BANFIELD: A woman, wounded by the bullet that killed her husband after he sent a text in the movie theater, shares her side of the tragic story.
And we're keeping them honest, a CNN investigation into the dark, and dank, and, yet, altogether legal side of politics and money. It's pay- to-play, Washington-style.
Hello everyone. I'm Ashleigh Banfield. It is Thursday, January 23rd, and welcome to LEGAL VIEW.
Our top story, Justin Bieber, that teen pop star who so many kids love and adore, whose tagline on Twitter is "make the world a better place," he was busted this morning.
Police say that he admitted he'd been drinking and smoking marijuana and taking prescription drugs before getting behind the wheel of a Ferrari. TMZ captured this video of his arrest. Excuse me a Lamborghini. Hard to tell the difference of those fancy cars.
The yellow Lamborghini is his. It's sort of the focus of these TMZ pictures. Police say that he'd actually been drag racing a red Ferrari, kind of confusing, but this is what they know.
They say he was going 60-miles-an-hour in a residential neighborhood. That's about double the limit.
Just a short time ago, Chief Ray Martinez with the Miami Beach police spoke at a news conference to explain Bieber's behavior once police finally caught up with him. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHIEF RAY MARTINEZ, MIAMI BEACH POLICE DEPARTMENT: Another officer was able to stop Mr. Bieber, and upon approaching the car, when he opened up the window and confronted Mr. Bieber, he smelled a strong odor of alcoholic beverage.
Mr. Bieber at that point was not cooperating with the officer's instructions. The officer asked him to exit the vehicle. He was questioning why he was being stopped. Ultimately, he eventually did step out of the vehicle, would not follow the officer's instructions.
The officer at that time did place Mr. Bieber under arrest.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BANFIELD: So we have a Google Street View of the actual spot where this took place. Take a close look. This is called 26th and Pine.
Police say two SUVs took part all of this, actually blocking off traffic so that there could be a race route, basically making it like a makeshift racetrack.
Our Tory Dunnan joins me live now from Miami. So, lift out exactly what sort of charges right now Justin Bieber is facing, keeping in mind this is just hours after the fact.
TORY DUNNAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Right. Let's run down sort of what he's facing right now.
It's interesting to point out, though, that the police department says additional charges could be coming later. They presented this to the state attorney. They'll take a look at all the information and go from there.
But right now we know that Justin Bieber is facing charges of DUI, resisting arrest without violence and then driving on a suspended license from Georgia.
Now, Ashleigh, one thing that's really interesting about all of this is I've talked to some police officers here in Miami Beach, and they said they knew Justin Bieber was in town, and everyone feared something might happen, that something might go wrong.
And, as you mentioned, this all started about 4:00 this morning here n Miami Beach. Many of the police officers we talked to say 4:00 a.m. in Miami Beach is basically the equivalent of 4:00 p.m. elsewhere else.
The people are getting up. They're going to work. You have hotel workers, industrial workers, and that Justin Bieber put people's lives in danger.
So, he's charged with all this. And at this point he's been moved from this police department here over to the jail.
BANFIELD: Tory, do you know anything just on the same vein of what you were saying, that there was a concern that he was in town and that there might be some trouble.
I find that kind of difficult to believe that there's this advance discussion of his being in town.
But there's this also this reporting out there that he may have actually had a police escort to sort of do some strip club hopping.
I'm not sure if it's this same night or another night, but what do we know about that?
DUNNAN: Right, well, all that is under investigation now and it's from a different police department. They're looking at the fact that Justin Bieber may have had an escort, a police escort, taking him potentially from one strip club to another.
At the this point, the police department looking into really how that authorization was made, saying that it's not really the traditional way of going about things.
So, that's part of the investigation as well, although it is separate from what happened during the overnight hours here in Miami Beach.
BANFIELD: All right. So, keep in an eye on that for us, if you will, Tory.
In the meantime, sorry if I'm sounding a little disjointed, but I just got into my hands the actual police report.
And here's the hard part. I want to be able to read this for you, but it is so filled with expletives that I'm going to have to do some edit-fly, OK?
So, I'm going to edit on the fly, because the police officer who responded said that -- this is just rife with "F"-bombs.
Part is, Why did you stop me? Why the "F" are you doing this? What the "F" did I do? I ain't got no "F"-ing weapons. Why the "F" -- or, I think that's, What the "F" are you doing?
Let's drop the graphics so I can give you some context on all this, because the officer in his affidavit seems to be giving quite a normal narrative on a regular stop.
Apparently how this started was that police witnessed drag racing, caught up with the first and second vehicles, stopped them and then this particular officer who made the arrest approached the yellow -- I think it was the yellow Lamborghini. He was drag racing apparently, allegedly, against a red Ferrari.
But the yellow Lamborghini, the officer walked up to the window and immediately -- "I immediately smelled an odor of alcohol emanating from the driver's breath and bloodshot eyes. The driver had slow deliberate movements and a stupor look on his face."
This is this the police officer, leaning into the yellow Lamborghini, alleging that this is Justin Bieber at the wheel. I'm going to move on a little bit to say, "I asked the driver to exit the vehicle. The driver stated, why the "F" are you doing this?
"As he kept going into his pants pocket, I asked the driver not to go into his pocket for my safety and his, fearing that the driver might have a weapon or contraband.
"I asked the suspect to place hands on his vehicle in order to facilitate a cursory pat-down for weapons. The driver stated, What the "F" did I do? Why did you stop me?
"Again, I asked the driver to place his hands on his vehicle. The driver complied, but then took his hands off the vehicle soon after and turned around to face me.
"Again, I asked the driver not to take his hands off his car and to look forward because I was going to perform a cursory pat-down.
"The driver stated, I ain't got no "F"-ing weapons. Why do you have to search me? What the "F" is this about?
"I advised the driver that if he continued to take his hands off the vehicle, he'd be subject to arrest.
"The driver again turned around to face me. At this time, I grabbed his right hand and I stated to him that he was under arrest.
"The driver began to resist me by pulling his right arm away as he stated, What the "F" are you doing?"
So, let me move on to the point after they threw him in the back of the cruiser and he continued to protest and ask why he was being taken to the station, why he was being arrested.
"And I advised him that I believed he was impaired. The defendant advised that he was not drunk, that he was coming back from recording music at a studio.
"I observed the defendant to have a flushed face, bloodshot eyes and the odor of alcoholic beverage on his breath.
"The defendant did not perform to the standards when we did the test. Later he agreed to a breath test as well as a drug evaluation.
"It was also learned that the defendant has an expired Georgia driver's license." Last two words on this, "Charge added." Might be the least of his worries, at this point.
HLN's legal analyst Joey Jackson and CNN legal analyst Paul Callan here now to talk with me about this.
The first thing I thought, what kind of kid who knows that he's engaging in some really naughty behavior, for starters, dares to speak to a law enforcement officer in this manner? And does that make a difference? Paul? PAUL CALLAN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: It makes a big difference, because there's advice that I'm sure Joey gives to his clients and kids, as well, and that's never get in an argument with the cop, because the cop is going to arrest you and all he's doing is making things worse for himself.
Now, is he doing it because he's rich and he's famous and he thinks he deserves something better? I can't look into his mind.
But, on this case, boy, you shouldn't be giving lip to the cop. You should be hoping he doesn't arrest you.
BANFIELD: So, Joey -
JOEY JACKSON, HLN LEGAL ANALYST: And you'll never win.
BANFIELD: And I was just going to say you're never going to win.
CALLAN: Unless you hire Jackson. In which case, you might have a shot.
BANFIELD: Part of these charges say resisting arrest. I think it's without violence.
BANFIELD: There's a difference between resisting arrest -- oh, wait. I think we just got the mug shot in of Justin Bieber at the Miami -- well, I wouldn't be smiling if I were you, young Justin Drew Bieber, because a mug shot is nothing to be proud of it.
Maybe it gives you street credit in the music world, but he could be facing a world of hurt over this?
JACKSON: He could. If you're his defense attorney, there are a couple of things to hone in on. First, look at the charges. A DUI driving under the influence is misdemeanor offense, in addition to reckless driver which could also be misdemeanor offense.
Why that's relative, look at his exposure, what he could face. A misdemeanor is a world different from a felony charge.
When you get to felony charges you examine his Canadian status and on that basis get into deportation.
BANFIELD: Let's remind everybody he's one of my fellow Canadians, but, however, has not went the route I did, becoming a United States citizen. He said he had no intention ever to become a U.S. citizen.
If he ever changes his mind, though, does this stuff matter?
JACKSON: (Inaudible) the behavior that you have engaged in over the course of your life.
BANFIELD: I've never had anything like this happen.
CALLAN: His big problem is going to be immigration. He may soon find himself hanging out with Mayor Ford in Toronto. Perhaps he could become Mayor Ford's driver.
BANFIELD: But let me touch on that, honestly.
BANFIELD: If you do things, regardless if they're misdemeanors, but if you engage while the police while you're effectively a guest in this country and you have been offered working status, it is not a right. It is a privilege. I went through this for years. Can they revoke it?
CALLAN: No, it's very -- they can't revoke it unless they prove you've committed a crime of moral turpitude.
However, if he leaves the country and goes back to Canada and now he wants to come back in, the consular official who's giving the visa, it's within his discretion to grant or not grant an artist and performer's visa.
So I would say Justin Timberlake --
CALLAN: Oh, Bieber. I'm so -- I apologize Timberlake.
Bieber will have difficulty, I think. clearing the visa process when he tries to come back in.
JACKSON: You could. But putting it into perspective and while you never want to disrespect a police officer, you certainly don't wanted to engage in language or say anything like this --
BANFIELD: Or, hello, resist arrest.
JACKSON: No, not at all, but it's not a crime to use choice words with a police officer. It should never be done and it simply aggravates whatever they can do to you. It aggravates the charges.
It doesn't make your life any more -- any better. But it's not a crime on that basis.
CALLAN: Yeah, but how about driving on a residential street at double the speed limit?
People could have been killed. He's obviously under the influence of alcohol, maybe drugs as well.
CALLAN: It's a pretty serious crime.
BANFIELD: They say he admitted to it.
JACKSON: But no one was killed. There's no aggravating circumstances.
Could people have been killed? Absolutely. People were not killed. And, at the end of the day, that's a very relative factor that there wasn't even an accident here.
BANFIELD: So, you get the mug shot out of this. I'm not 100-percent clear whether they'll fingerprint him, but that would be my guess as the Constitution -
JACKSON: Oh, yes.
BANFIELD: -- allows for, certainly.
And here's the other deal. While he's still in those buildings and there are all sorts of helicopters hovering over, wondering when they're going to get a peek at the newly discharged Bieb, it's coming, folks.
After the break, I'm going to let you know exactly what the rules are with the Miami Beach P.D. and exactly how long they're going to hold him for.
But here's a hint. Watch your clock, because the minutes are ticking down.
Coming after the break, I'll let you know exactly when Biebs is coming out of the building.
BANFIELD: So we're covering this breaking news of the Miami Beach police arresting Justin Bieber overnight essentially in the middle of the night, 4:00 in the morning. It's your neighborhood, and two SUVs shut off streets so that a kid like this and his friend, in very expensive rented cars - a Lamborghini and a Ferrari -- can drag race. Especially just within months of Paul Walker dying in a fiery crash drag racing. Then come the allegations there's drinking, pot smoking. prescription pill medication abusing, all while this little party is going on . Clearly it's cause for a lot of trouble.
Not only that, when it's Justin Bieber who's also got a string of other issues involving the police following him in the last couple of weeks in fact, it does make it a lead story. This is a multimillion dollars recording artist who has legions of young and old people, who really like this guy, who look up to this guy. Like it or not Mr. Bieber, you're a role model for many. When you smile in your mug shot, it doesn't make this story and easier to tell this story or funny at all.
My two attorneys weighing in on these charges now Justin Bieber is facing. We've heard of DUIs before among celebrities. When you couple that with driving without a valid license and also the behavior, right, that he was behaving -- the behavior toward the officer and resisting arrest. Is there anything in the combination that makes individual misdemeanors more serious? I know in this state, in New York, it can be more serious.
CALLAN: Immigration is a very nuanced, complicated issue. It's hard to deport somebody from the United States. So I'm saying, on those factors no, he's not going to get deported. But when he tries to get back into the country, they're going to look at the whole picture to see whether he's a good person worthy of admission to the United States. And then, they're going to look at other things like the California incidents, there was an egging incident. There have been incidents at his house where there were allegations about drug use. There's drug use involved here.
BANFIELD: Drug use with another person in the home. They're not tying the drugs at this point to Justin Bieber.
CALLAN: I understand. We're not talking convictions of crimes. We're talking about a consular official looking at somebody and saying I have discretion not to admit you, and based on what I see here, there's moral turpitude here, which is the phraseology that's used in the immigration code. I think he may have problems getting back into the United States.
JACKSON: Look who he is -- I think it's unlikely.
BANFIELD: I want to do a correction. I suggested Paul Walker, which is such a high profile death in a fast car, driving at a very fast rate of speed. Paul Walker wasn't drag racing, but was driving very, very fast, and it lead in the headlines, there were a lot of people were distressed who lost what they thought was an idol, the star of the Fast and Furious series, and all within just - I don't even think it's two months since we lost Paul Walker. This now happening. Thank God it didn't result in anything more serious than an arrest. Buy go ahead Joey.
JACKSON: Oh, absolutely. And you know what it is, Ashleigh, also? You wonder now how much more motivated the officials in California are going to be, predicated upon that warrant that they executed on his home.
JACKSON: Well, think about it. Now you have a person who's engaged in some kind of potentially criminal activity in Florida, there was an arrest warrant issued for an egging incident in California. They retained, as a result of that, his cell phone and also surveillance. So, do they pursue this investigation with more vigor based upon the fact he's getting into all types of trouble. I don't think this standing on itself will lead to immigration consequences. But the net effect of this, coupled with that other investigation, at a point earlier made, if he was -- drugs were found in his home. He wasn't charged for that --
BANFIELD: but someone else was taken out in cuffs, a friend of his, a rapper.
JACKSON: And what I wonder, Paul, is that listen -- you can have constructive possession over drugs if they're found in your home. The fact is you could be deemed to be in constructive possession of them. They're in the home you inhabit and have control over. If the police in that occasion, you know, decide to arrest him, you have to wonder what could have happened of a result and would he have been in Florida in the first place?
BANFIELD: So, there you have it, just within minutes, the Miami Beach police have released the Justin Bieber mug shot all of this within a couple of weeks of the incident Joey was talking about. If you have just heard about the egg throwing incident, it wasn't just an egg throwing incident. This is a neighbor who had roughly $20,000 worth of damage perpetrated on his home allegedly at the hands of Justin Bieber throwing a lot of eggs. You've got to live in a pretty expensive house, but apparently they are very expensive houses where Justin Bieber lives in the Calabasas area.
So, the saga continues with the young Canadian who likes to perform in America. If you like to watch him perform in America, I hope you got your fill. As Paul suggested it could be trouble for him to get back in the country. Many artists before have been shut out because of bad behavior in the past.
CALLAN: Toronto might be the city for Justin Bieber.
BANFIELD: Guys, thanks. Hold those thoughts for a moment. I do have a couple of other amazing stories crossing our wires today. The widow of the man who was shot dead in the Florida movie theater, remember, over texting? That widow was injured in the shooting as well. Now she's talking. She says there's absolutely no reason the shooter should have felt threatened in that incident. Will the stand your ground defense come into play for this accused gunman, especially now since this witness, who was not only first hand, was injured in the hand by the gunshot, now that she's talking, THE LEGAL VIEW is next.
BANFIELD: Emotions still so raw for the woman who's husband was killed at a Florida movie theater. All over a fight about texting. Nicole Oulson was shot in the hand while trying to protect the love of her life, her husband. Still wearing her pink cast on her hand, she's now bravely coming toward to talk about the shooting incident and everything that led up to it. The man charged with murdering her husband claimed this was done in self-defense, but convincing a jury could be a major uphill battle with multiple witnesses and a grieving widow all within a close proximity of the incident. Martin Savidge looks at what she's saying publicly for the first time.
MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Nicole Oulson's voice resonated with pain. NICOLE OULSON, HUBAND KILLED IN MOVIE THREATER: Right now I'm just still trying to recover from the shock, and my main focus is, and always will be, on my daughter Alexis. It's just unimaginable.
SAVIDGE: She and her husband, Chad, had gone to this movie theater, north of Tampa, for a date.
OULSON: I was so excited and looking forward to spending the day with the love of my life at a place of entertainment, you know, family entertainment.
SAVIDGE: But the screening of "Lone Survivor" quickly turned violent. Her husband was texting their daughter's baby sitter during the previews, when according to witnesses, this man Curtis Reeves confronted him. Oulson then allegedly threw a bag of popcorn at Reeves, and that's when police say the 71-year-old retired police officer pulled out a gun and fired.
OULSON: And just to think that in a blink of an eye, my whole world just got shattered into a million pieces and now I'm left trying to pick them up and put them all back together.
SAVIDGE: Witnesses say during the previews at this theater north of Tampa, Chad Oulson used his phone to text the babysitter watching their 22-month-old daughter. That apparently bothered the man behind him, 71-year-old retired cop, Curtis Reeves.
SAVIDGE: CNN has tried repeatedly to get Reeves' side of the story, but his lawyer will not return calls.
Police say Reeves told them he fired in self defense. Meanwhile, his attorney says his client is also suffering.
RICHARD ESCOBAR, REEVES ATTORNEY: Mr. Reeves is certainly heart broken over the fact that someone's life has been lost here. But, you know, we need to focus at this point in time on gathering the true evidence and bringing that forth before the court.
SAVIDGE: Nicole Oulson says she's grateful for the outpouring for words and wishes, which she says so far has carried her through..
OULSON: It is so hard and so unbearable, but I want to thank you all for your thoughts and prayers. Thank you.
SAVIDGE: The bullet that killed her husband first passed through the hand of Nicole Oulson. It's possible she may kneed a follow up surgery.
Meanwhile, a fund has been set up in her husband's behalf. It continues to take donations and so far, they've raised a little over $20,000. Curtis Reeves, his next court appearance is scheduled for February 5th.
BANFIELD: Martin Savidge reporting for us on that story. Nicole Oulson spoke to ABC's Robin Reports this morning as well about the shooting. And then she also gave her reaction to the alleged shooter Curtis Reeves, and his claim that he did it because he feared for his life.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ROBIN ROBERTS, ABC NEWS HOST: Nicole, is there any reason why the man who shot your husband would have felt threatened in any way?
OULSON: Absolutely not. Not in the least. I never expected it, never could have imagined it. It was a couple of words. No threats. No harm, no nothing.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BANFIELD: So those are the first accounts of whatever transpired before the bullet flew. I want to bring back in HLN legal analyst Joey Jackson and CNN legal analyst Paul Callan. First to you Joey, she is such a critical witness. She was there and saw everything. So she may have seen everything, but is she also too partial to be an excellent witness?
JACKSON: Certainly she could be attacked on that basis. Certainly you want witnesses who are objective and don't have a dog in the fight so to speak. You have to credit her for bravery coming out and speaking to this point. Although she's not the best witness, I would argue that she's a very sympathetic witness.
And I see that there'd be two major defense problems here. The first major defense problem would be the imminence of the threat. Are you really in imminent fear of your life because popcorn is thrown at you? That's the one question the defense has to overcome. The second question equally critical is the force used has to be proportionate to the threat that's posed. And so, the gross disproportion between getting popcorn thrown at you and shooting someone, there's a major disconnect which I think will raise major questions and problems in a jury's mind from a defense perspective.
CALLAN: In simple terms, the victim was armed with popcorn. Even in Florida that doesn't give you a stand your ground right to commit murder.
BANFIELD: Now, Paul look, if I were a defense attorney for that man, I would bring up right away everybody is making big deal about popcorn. Who knows what that shooter - and this is again, his defense only, not my opinion. Who knows what that shooter was thinking? Was he thinking the victim was going for a gun. This is a carry state right? It's dark in the theater. Can't you see the defense?
CALLAN: No, I can't.
CALLAN: Because here's how the law works. The law is what would a reasonable person think under the circumstances. A guy is sitting with his wife, probably eating popcorn. And there's a dispute about texting. All of a sudden this guy sitting behind him thinks his life is in danger? This is a routine encounter between people in a movie theater. So, I'm not buying it. It's not how a reasonable person would react under the circumstances. I don't think it's a legitimate defense.
JACKSON: Unfortunately I think the jury will be thinking what Paul is suggesting. To your point Ashleigh, it goes to the state of mind. What was the state of mind like? It's dark in a movie theater. I don't know, are you going to attack me with something else. As a result of that, did he need to react with such force? And certainly the defense is going to play the card exactly as you suggested. However --
BANFIELD: The media loves to talk about popcorn versus a gun, but I guarantee you his lawyer is going to say something far more serious than that.
CALLAN: Well, he better say something far more serious because the facts in this case don't look very good for the defense. Even if Jackson were defending this case, I think there might be some serious problems.
JACKSON: You can't fire on somebody in a movie theater.
BANFIELD: This witness whether sympathetic or too partial, there were other witnesses and plenty of room for corroboration.
BANFIELD: If they corroborate what she says, it is.
JACKSON: That's the main point. Collaboration. It's not only her but the collective weight of the other evidence.
BANFIELD: Paul and Joey, you are great. Always great legal minds on these stories.
Coming up, extortion, dirty good dealings, all sounds like a plot from dirty cards about to drop. I can't wait. Guess what, CNN reveals "House of Cards" ain't so off base, it turns out. A lot is happening there in our nation's capital, good old America. Find out what we have found out and what we uncovered in broad daylight, coming up.