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tv   CNN Newsroom  CNN  September 25, 2011 7:00pm-8:00pm EDT

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manslaughter. the trial began on friday when the jury was seated. the defense tried to have the jury sequestered unsuccessfully. for a better understanding of the case here's ted rowlands. >> your honor, i'm an innocent man. >> reporter: the jury in the conrad murray manslaughter trial will have several questions to answer, number, did dr. murray give michael jackson a lethal doet of propopol. >> his attorneys say there is no way. >> there is no way that dr. murray would pump him full of enough propphol sufficient for major surgery and walk out of the room. >> he claims the day he died he 0 only administered 25 milligrams, far less than what was found in his body by the coroner. >> how did it get in him?
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>> that's a good question. do you have any idea? >> the defense is expected to argue that jackson somehow gave himself the lethal dose. >> could michael jackson have done it? >> is it possible for an individual to inject himself with a drug, yes. yes. >> reporter: before jackson died, he spent hours struggling to go to sleep according to a time line murray gave police. he said he gave jackson five doses of three different drugs between 1:30 a.m. and 7 kpln 30 a.m. at 10:40 a.m., he said he gave jackson the propofol. >> did anybody witness what happened? >> just the doctor, sir. >> 911 was called at 12:21. emergency responders will testify they believe jackson was dead when they arrived. another question jurors must ask was using propofol, an anesthetic for surgery as a sleep aid so reckless that
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murray should be held responsible for jackson's death? >> doctor after doctor gets up and says, well, this should never be used outside of a clinical setting, outside a hospital or a clinic. >> the fact that the circumstances may be unusual, may be demonstrated to be unusual, does not make it egregious. that alone does not make it egregious. >> reporter: murray's defense will argue that jackson was a drug addict and in horrible physical shape and that he was getting drugs from other doctors that murray didn't know about. prosecutors plan to argue that jackson was in good shape and plan to show this clip from the documentary "this is it" of jackson rehearsing just days before he died. so now, more than two years after jackson's death, a los angeles jury will be presented with the case and ultimately decide whether or not dr. conrad murray should be held responsible. ted rowlands, cnn, los angeles. >> and i will be in los angeles all week to cover the trial for cnn and bring you the very latest from inside the courtroom. one of the judge's biggest
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worries in the conrad murray trial is social media, whether or not. jury misconduct online is becoming more frequent. the judge wants jurors not only to avoid sharing their experience and feelings about the case on social networking sites, but to also refrain from researching the case online. i'd say the last year and a half, i've seen about 75% hands of perspective jurors go up to say that they actually googled the parties in the case, even the attorneys. >> there's been numerous scores of trials that have been overturned, mistrials declared, as a result of jurors not realizing that, oh, if i google a particular term or person or witness that's come into the trial, that's doing investigation into the case. >> -- women and the alternate selected for the jury have been questioned about their social networking habits. in other news, president barack obama begins a new week out west raising campaign cash and hosting a high-tech town hall. he got a warm welcome from
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democratic donors at just a little while ago, that was in seattle. he used most of his speech to promote his new jobs bill, a plan that's not popular among republicans. he also asked the crowd to help with his re-election. >> i've come because i need you to help finish what we started in 2008. now, back then we started this campaign not because we thought it would be a cakewalk. after all, you supported a candidate named barack hussein obama. you didn't need a poll -- you didn't need a poll to know that that was not going to be easy. >> and from washington state, the president heads to northern california for more fund-raisers later this evening. sunday, he hosts a town hall meeting with the web company linkedin. 781 days, that's how long
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josh fattal and shane bauer spent locked up in iran. but now both have their feet planted firmly back on u.s. soil. cnn's susan candiotti was there when they spoke with reporters soon after arriving home. so, susan, we've been waiting to hear from these men. take us inside that press conference. >> well, you know, the very first thing we learned was how it was that they found out that they were going to be set free. and they said, normally, every day they had a bit of exercise in the prison that was outside, then they would normally be blindfolded and taken to their 8 x 13 cell. but last wednesday, after their exercise, they said they were taken to a different floor of the prison and that they were given street clothes and they were fingerprinted. then they were taken somewhere else and met with an envoy for the sultan of oman, and he said to them, let's go home. and don, that's how they figured out they were going home. and of course, they did say that they were very thankful to be set free by the iranian government, but then they didn't waste any time slamming the
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iranians, saying that they don't deserve any praise, other than the fact that they let them go. here's how they elaborated. >> but we want to be clear, they do not deserve undue credit for ending what they had no right and no justification to start in the first place. from the very start, the only reason we have been held hostage is because we are american. >> in prison, every time we complained about our conditions, the guards would immediately remind us of comparable conditions at guantanamo bay. they would remind us of cia prisons in other parts of the world and the the conditions that iranians and others experience in prisons in the u.s. we do not believe that such human rights violations on the part of our government justify what has been done to us. not for a moment. >> so an interesting comment there.
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they also called on iran to release all political prisoners. so don, what happens next? well, they said they're going away. they want privacy, they want to be left alone, they want to get some rest, and then figure out what to do with the rest of their lives. and of course, they thank everyone, volunteers in the private and public sector, who helped get them out and kept the pressure on. >> yeah. after two years, they would probably want some privacy, and just reset. thank you, susan candiotti. appreciate it. a shoot-out in a small town. we have new information on the deadly shooting outside a youth football game in washington state. it's an incident that has left an entire community dazed and confused. it was no ordinary sunday in this new jersey church. the pastor said, please stand as we pass the offering plate, except, please take some cash instead of giving a little. hmm. it's what the pastor calls a spiritual stimulus. [ angela ] endless shrimp is our most popular promotion at red lobster.
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new details are emerging about a dramatic shoot-out you first saw last night right here on cnn. [ gunfire ] >> jesus christ. >> a gunman opened fire near an elementary middle school, a high
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school in issaquah, washington. here's the scary part. a youth football game underway at that high school. i want you to listen, because football fans in the packed stadium ducked for cover. >> they huddled under the bleachers, staying close together, and scared out of their minds. >> everybody's terrified out there. they're very scared. >> they started shooting at us and the bullet went me and my friend, tony, and we went around and started running and we could hear the bullets bouncing off the concrete behind us. >> no one in the stadium was hit, but police say the unidentified 51-year-old man fired his first shot at the elementary school where he tried to break into a car. from there, police say he amendmented to get into the cab of a backhoe that was on school property. police rushed to the scene and exchanged shots with the man killing him before he was able to get near the parents and children at that football game. remembering the victims of that tragic air race disaster in nevada. it's impossible to forget the image of this in reno. 11 people died when a pilot lost
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control of his vintage plane and barreled into the crowd. well, tonight, hundreds are expected to gather at a memorial at 9:00 p.m. eastern. the city will dedicate a tree to the victims and hold a candlelight vigil. the call to sunday service at one new jersey church had different ring to it, more like a jingle. >> people are acting like they're going to be struck by lightning. they're typically, you know, a lot of people are cynical about religion and they come to church expecting to be shaken down. but we're saying, you know what, it's really all god's money, and he trusts you. >> well, find out why a pastor invited those in his church to reach into the offering plate and take some money out. but first. first, remember how it was when you were in school? teachers at their desk, students at their desks, taking notice. steve perry takes a look as the kids take charge, at least for a day.
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>> when the synapses in my brain connect, then i learn. can you guys stand up and do it with us? >> reporter: the students are teaching class today at the beardsly school. the pupils, they're teachers. this role reversal is a part of a revolutionary program developed by the national urban alliance or nua. how do the teachers respond to having kids tell them how to teach? >> they love it, because it really gives them an understanding of the strengths that the students have, as well as where the gaps are that need to be filled in. >> reporter: the training is broken up into two parts. first, an nua representative leads a session on creative teaching methods for both students and teachers. >> ready, set, go! >> neurons are the brain cells, the brain cells, the brain cells. >> reporter: then the kids take over. >> i'll only give you about two minutes, so go. >> you're working in some of the lowest performing school districts in the country.
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what is it that you hope to gain? >> it's not just so that the students feel empowered, it's so that the teachers see what unbelievable wealth and potential these students have. >> reporter: today you guys are teaching. was that cool? >> yeah. >> what makes you think you'd be a good teacher? >> they always teach us, so it's good to teach them for a change. >> reporter: costs for the program are split between the nua and school districts. more than 415 schools have participated so far. the nua says those students' performance has improved in the classroom and they're currently sponsoring formal research to confirm that. >> i think teachers need to know that they should keep on trying and keep on teaching the kids no matter what. >> reporter: steve perry, bridgeport, connecticut. [ female announcer ] for over 30 years, we've been dedicated to helping our students succeed in america's most in demand careers. we provide you with instructors who are professionals
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people who attended services at one new jersey church today left with more money than they had when they came. the liquid church passed the offering plate, but insisted people take money out instead of dropping it in. how often does that happen? the church pastor was on cnn earlier today. >> on a typical sunday, people give about $30,000 in cash into our sunday offering, so today, they're going to do just the
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opposite. they'll reach in and pull out a envelope that we've pre-packed with 10s, 20s, and 50s. people come to church expecting to be shaken down, but we're saying, it's really all god's money and he trusts you. every bill in the u.s. economy says "in god we trust," and we're going to put that to the test. >> that's my kind of church. he's also urging his flock to use the money to help people in need. he calls a spiritual stimulus. spain's most famous matador takes the ring for barcelona's final bull fight. we'll tell you why there are mixed emotions about the end of this era. costing drivers $67 billion a year, and countless tires. which drivers never actually check because they're busy, checking email. this is why we engineered a car that makes 2,000 decisions every second. the new audi a6 is here. the road is now an intelligent place.
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spain is a cradle of bullfighting, but critics say the sport's time has come and gone. they're celebrating its end in one province, but as lola martinez explains, that doesn't mean bullfighting is on the edge of extinction. >> reporter: the trumpet fan fair signals the end of an era as barcelona hosts its final bull fight. bull fighting is a sport that for many has come to symbolize spain. but the regional government voted last year to ban the
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practice on the grounds that it is cruel and outdated. critics of bullfighting hailed the vote as a victory for animal rights. >> we still want bullfighting, and finally, it's over. >> i think it has barbaric. i'm totally against it. >> reporter: supporters say bullfighting is an art form that represents spanish cultural and should be preserved. they hope to overturn the ban on constitutional grounds. >> i think it's terrible to ban bullfighting here, because it represents the culture of our can country. >> why do we have to ban bullfighting here when it's permitted in the rest of spain? >> reporter: in recent years, attendance has been down at the famous bull ring due to bullfighting's declining popularity among young people. but tickets for sunday's finale were sold out. fittingly, spain's most popular matador rang down the curtain as
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the final bullfighter on the bill. lola martinez. a disappointing end for a swimmer, diana nyad. >> i owned it! i trained so damned hard for it. i deserve it. it's a hard thing to let go of. >> you'll find out why she was forced out of the water less than halfway through her swim from cuba to florida. it's disappointing. [ male announcer ] if you're only brushing, add listerine® total care for more complete oral care.
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all right. let's check your headlines, shall we? technicians in california have restored service to most at&t customers affected by a major outage. you know, a hardware glitch disrupted service for thousands of wireless customers in southern california over the past 24 hours. at&t says a hardware issue knocked out about 900 cell towers within its network around
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the los angeles county area. in athens today, police used tear gas to subdue several hundred protesters. police accused a group of trying to block a road near parliament. a nationwide civil servant strike has been called for october 5th because of anger over austerity measures. greek officials have a tough week with ahead of them trying to persuade european and imf auditors that they are on track to control the country's enormous deficit. [ shouting and gunfire ] and we go to yemen now. medics in yemen say one person was killed in the capital today as security forces battled anti-government protesters. 38 people were killed saturday in clashes, 38. addressing his country, president ali abdullah saleh blamed terrorists. he also said that al qaeda is supported by the elements responsible for the violence. and saudi arabia's king is giving women the right to vote.
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king abdullah's decision doesn't take effect until after the next election. on thursday, saudi men will vote in municipal elections, only the second in 50 years. women still have a long way to go in the kingdom. saudi arabia doesn't even allow them to drive. endurance swimmer diane nyad failed today in her latest attempt to swim the 130 miles from cuba to florida. nyad began her swim friday evening and projected it would take 60 hours to complete, but she suffered jelly fish and man of war stings and was pushed off-course by strong currents. she was pulled from the water after 67 miles. >> but those two man of war stings have never been through any pain ever like that in my whole life. and i tried. i was paralyzed all through my back. >> back off, i'm coming through! >> yeah, go forward. get out of the way. i had the chills, vomiting.
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twice. and i kept swimming through it. and now it's set me so far back, i just don't have the lung capacity to swim the way i can, you know? >> well, diana, you're still a champ. she made her first attempt 33 years ago. her second attempt last month ended after 29 hours. again, you're still a champ. so good luck to you, good luck in the future. i'm sure you'll try something else again. all right, nbc "saturday night live" has its eye on politics, spoofing the gop's latest presidential debate. well, guess host alex baldwin portrayed texas governor rick perry as a less than -- well, i should say, energized candidate. take a look. >> c.h.i.hip, if i may, i would to attack mitt romney as a flip-flopper. >> are you sure? it's late in the debate. this is when you normally get tired and confused. >> not tonight.
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i'm ready. romney said he was for -- uh, against obama care, but what about mitt romney? i mean, mitt romney care? was it was before he was before? >> uh-oh. >> was it was, he was before. >> rick perry getting it from all sides. i'm don lemon. i'll see you back here at 10:00 p.m. eastern. the president wants jobs, the republicans want the white house, and shaping the fight on both sides are the economic ideas of a congressman from wisconsin. how paul ryan became revered, reviled, and what he wants next. the real wire. a no-nonsense baltimore police chief cracks down on violent crime, but here's the twist. he wants fewer arrests.
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driving while blind. at a university in the virginia hills, researchers say a miracle in the making. and simon says he can do it. what? that you'll have to see to believe. stories that make the headlines matter, all on "stories: reporter." welcome, i'm tom foreman. here in washington, where it sometimes seems like everyone is running for president, congressman paul ryan made headlines for saying he will not. ryan is the 41-year-old chairman of the house budget committee. but he's better known as the man with the plan to cut the deficit and fix the economy. it is, as gloria borger says, the holy grail for some republicans, and the devil's work for many democrats. >> the ryan road map is the way to the cliff, and then over the cliff. >> the ryan proposal, obviously,
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would destroy our government. >> i gave fear up for lent this year. >> you're not joking. >> no, i gave up fear for lent this year. >> you're not kidding me, right? >> no. >> how do you do that? >> well, i'm working at it. >> reporter: until recently, paul ryan was a relatively unknown budget wonk. now he's famous. as the face of a new brand of republican economics that includes the most sweeping plan to cut government spending in decades. >> there's a big test for this country. and whether we ply our country's principles, you know, liberty, freedom, free enterprise, self-determination, government by consent of govern -- >> right. >> all of these really core principles are being test the right now, and you can't have fear if you try to fix these problems. you know, there's kind of a shoot the messenger strategy these days. and you can't -- >> you're the messenger? >> the messenger, and you can't fear that. >> reporter: so who is paul ryan? >> i'm fifth generation from
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jamesville. >> reporter: the path from the union-heavy small town in wisconsin led to a conservative pedigree. first as a republican congressional staffer -- >> i'm paul ryan, candidate for congress. >> reporter: then with a long shot bid for a house seat 13 years ago. >> well, paul ryan is maybe a rare thing in washington. he is what he seems. >> reporter: bill bennett is a conservative talk radio host and cnn contributor. he was one of ryan's mentors, along with supply-side guru jack kemp in the early 1990s. >> he is a guy without guile, without pretense. he likes to hang out with actua actuaries, for relaxation -- >> who doesn't?! >> which is kind of a funny thing. he also hunts elk with a bow and arrow, so he's an interesting character. >> and it literally gets our economy -- >> reporter: he's had the deficit in his sights for years, but even republicans steered clear of some of his more controversial budget ideas. that is, until the tea party became the rage.
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>> i think it is because of the circumstances of what happened that the recession, the resulting vengeance spending that occurred after it, and then passing entitlements like obama care, and then the electoral reaction to that brought these ideas into the mainstream. >> because it's not like you had an extreme makeover. >> no, no, i've been doing the same thing for a long time. >> reporter: ryan became popular by pushing the unpopular, things like killing his colleague's pork projects, or trying to revamp social security, and eventually change medicare into a program of vouchers for private insurers. so that's not only touching the third rail of politics, as it's called, it's like grabbing on -- >> i used to say, like a koala bear on the third the rail. so here's the problem, if you don't address these issues now, they're going to steamroll as a country. and the issue is, the more you delay fixing these problems, the much uglier the solutions are
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going to have to be. 51% of medicare right now is funded with borrowed money. so if we're going to keep that promise, you have to change it for our generation. you have to change it for those of us in the "x" generation. >> it would kill people, no question. >> reporter: his ideas infuriate liberals, like nobel prize winning economist, paul krugman. >> the cuts in medicare that he's proposing, the replacement of medicare by a voucher system would, in the end, mean that tense of millions of older americans would not be able to afford essential health care. so that counts as cruelty to me. >> reporter: ryan scoffs at the idea, and his fellow republicans have joined in, making the ryan budget the coin of the realm. just ask newt gingrich, who with once dared take it on. >> i don't think right-wing social engineering is anymore desirable than left-wing social engineering. >> reporter: gingrich called ryan to take it back. >> and basically said he just -- he was wrong. >> reporter: and there are other
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ideas. ryan wants to reform the tax code. as for new taxes, no way. not even if a deal included $10 of spending cuts for every dollar of new taxes. the public wants compromise and wants a solution where democrats and republicans work together, and they see, okay, republicans won't accept -- >> yeah, see, the kind of compromise, all i hear about these days is we take the tax increases and they do a little less spending. what is the policy? see, this is ridiculous, talking about ratios. where's obama care? where's medicare reform, medicaid reform? >> this is not class warfare. >> reporter: and when the president proposed a plan to cut the deficit by taxing the wealthy, ryan was the first to call it class warfare. and he's convinced the president is just wasting valuable time. >> we're in the middle of a lost decade. >> reporter: and ryan is a man in a hurry. in washington, he bunks in his congressional office. it's cheaper, near work, and
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closer to the house gym, which is good, since he's a fitness buff, who got some of his colleagues hooked on a grueling exercise routine called p-90x. >> it's just a great workout. >> reporter: in a way, he owes his devotion to fit tonnes his father. in particular, one day when the younger ryan was still a teen. your dad was 55 when he died and you were? >> 16. >> 16 years old. how did that affect you? you say you're more sensitive. >> yeah, i was a young kid working at mcdonald's that summer and my mom was out visiting my sister, who got a job in denver and went to wake him up in the morning and he wasn't alive. >> you found him. >> so i basically had to learn to sink or swim. hi grandmother, who had alzheimer's, moved in with us at the time. my mom and i took care of her. my mom went back to school to learn a skill and i did a lot of growing up, very fast. it made me very, i'd say,
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initiative prone. live life to its fullest, because you never know how long it's going to last. >> but you had the opportunity to run for president at the age of 41. if you're in a hurry. >> oh, yeah, nice boomerang on that. >> and you said no. >> sure, because i think there are other good people who can do this job, but there are other good people who can't raise my kids. >> reporter: that didn't stop the push this past summer to try and draft ryan to run. the argument is simple. he's proven he can take on the president. >> paul -- >> it's just a difference of philosophy -- >> no, no -- >> it is. >> this is an important point. >> reporter: bill bennett says that ryan really flashed on to the president's radar after some fiery exchanges at his health care summit last year. >> you can tell barack obama took notice. he went up, took the measure of him. paul ryan was in his brain a little bit. >> reporter: actually, a lot.
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the white house with seated paul ryan right up front at the president's budget speech in april, and then proceeded to denounce his plan. >> it ends medicare as we know it. >> what i was thinking going into that speech was, you know what, we're getting divided government to work. we're actually compromising, getting things done. so what i got out of that was, political mode, you know, demagoguery, trying to nullify the notion that there's an alternative path for this country. >> reporter: with neither side budging, ryan has settled in. >> paul ryan is the right guy! >> reporter: as a hero to republicans and a devil to the democrats. and he's okay with that. >> yeah, they had an ad of me pushing some older woman off a cliff or something like that. >> reporter: it doesn't bother you? >> no, not really. look, we have a normal life here in jamesville. my wife and i have, we have three beautiful kids, soccer on saturdays, we have cub scouts. we have a normal life like everybody else. i go to washington four days a
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week, which i call the silly place. it's, you know, two different kind of worlds. and if we don't tackle these big problems, they going to tackle us. >> when we return, it's crime time. >> police in baltimore after years of failure have cracked the code for reducing violence, and you won't believe their secret or how incredibly well it is working. when "stories: reporter" continues. i can't enjoy my own barbecue with these nasal allergies.
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in baltimore, like a lot of other big cities, police have been trying for years to reduce violent crime, with some success, some failure, but no profound changes. that is, until recently. now it seems like everything is changing. their recipe, take one hard-nosed old-fashioned police chief, add in some new relationships with federal agencies, and mix it all up with a swarming attack unlike anything criminals there have ever seen before. dan lothian has that story. >> reporter: baltimore is known for the ravens, the orioles, blue crabs, and murder. it is perpetually listed among america's most violent cities. about every 40 hours, someone
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else is struck down. >> someone just got shot outside. >> reporter: most often by gunfire. >> go, go! >> reporter: the city's brutal legacy has been immortalized in tv shows such as hbo's "the wire," where gritty, fictional killings are not terribly far from the reality on the streets. >> what keeps us up at night is that this violence blows up innocent people. >> reporter: so it might surprise you to hear police commissioner frederick beallefeld made a proud confession. they're arresting more people than ever before. >> if you want to effect that, arrest more people. just bring in more of these guys and it will drag the number down. it doesn't work. it just doesn't work that way. >> reporter: so what does work? >> we're going to go to 2410. >> reporter: this. an early morning raid on a known violent criminal suspected of once again having illegal guns.
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>> this is going to be a 9 millimeter. >> reporter: it is part of an ambitious and tough program called exa, which focuses police and prosecutors on making quality, not quantity arrests. on nabbing serious, dangerous offenders, even if letting lower level drug dealers and thieves slip away. in other words, less is more. so you're saying that that mass arrest for all of these different small, petty crimes was, what? >> it didn't affect our bottom line. you can't solve world hunger. we've been battling drugs in america for decades now. but i can get rid of these guys with guns. we can. >> reporter: compile depends on a number of key strategies. first, identify and tracking violent felons the police have mapped every square block, noting which felons live where, and they relentlessly follow their movements, monitor their friendships, watch everything they do.
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>> we're mapping them. we're mapping gun offenders and violent offenders. >> reporter: if it sounds like an infringement on privacy, mayor stephanie rawlings-blake says, so be it. >> people have a right to know where these individuals are and the police need to know where these violent individuals are, because they are tasked with keeping our neighborhood safe. >> reporter: so you're saying privacy discussions shouldn't be a part of this? >> i'm saying the public weighs in on safety and weighs that more than an offender's privacy. >> reporter: second, compiexile relies on communities for information about bad guys. the police know it is controversial to sometimes let lower level criminals elude them, but that more lenient attitude sometimes gets people who have been associated petty crimes talking in a community where snitching is frowned on. >> they don't want you to fish with a net.
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they want my cops to come through this block with a spear, and when they see a shark on the street to be able to discern the difference and jam the spear through the top of the shark's head. that's what they want you to be able to do. >> reporter: and the spear, federal law enforcement clout. exile relies on an unusually high level of cooperation between local, state, and federal police agencies. for example, several baltimore street cops have been deputyized by the bureau of alcohol, tobacco, and firearms, allowing them access to computerized gun tracing files. what's more, the feds are quick to step in if the locals say their state laws can't bring enough pressure to bear on the accused. >> our sentences are without probation and without parole. and so when we prosecute offenders in federal court, they know that they get a sentence of ten years, they're actually going to serve a large portion of that ten years, with the exception of potential time off for good behavior. >> reporter: the result -- >> last year, 2010, the lowest
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homicide rate in baltimore in 25 years. >> reporter: while police have the momentum in this cat and mouse game with violent criminals, the overall score is still grim. even as their murder numbers drop, baltimore remains one of the five most violent cities in the country. >> whewe set a 25-year low for homicides, we didn't pop champagne cork and celebrate and tink our glasses together. what we did is wake up the next morning and started work all over again. >> reporter: officials know they have many years of hard work ahead. but they also know this. for the first time in almost anyone's memory, the police have the killers on the run. coming up, dealing with the blind spots. how cars, robots, and visually impaired drivers are coming together in the virginia countryside to create a minor
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miracle, cars that truly a blind man can drive, when "stories: reporter" continues. man: all right. we were actually thinking, maybe... we're going to hike up here, so we'll catch up with you guys. [ indistinct talking and laughter ] whew! i think it's worth it. working with a partner you can trust is always a good decision. massmutual. let our financial professionals help you reach your goals.
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zblts modern technology is producing a steady stream of wonder for disabled people. bionic legs and robotic hands. in the hills of virginia a new
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invention is taking shape which could allow blind people to do something that has been concerned frankly impossible. it could put them on the road driving, alone. okay. let's go for a drive. here we go. >> reporter: on the campus of virginia tech -- i'll tell you, this is a very disconcerts experience -- in a parking lot near the stadium. >> you're driving like a pro. >> i don't think like a pro. >> you're watching a minor miracle. that is me driving. yes, i am blindfolded. and, no, my passenger dr. dennis hung is not worried. because he and his students built this car to prove a point. you don't have any doubt in the world that blind people can drive. >> i believe so. >> reporter: back up. what was that? blind people can drive. >> i believe so. >> reporter: the connection that led to this conviction came when dr. hong's acclaimed robotics lab here hooked up with the
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national federation for the blind. at first he assumed what the national federation wanted was a rob -- >> we use these laser range finders. >> reporter: his team installed laser range finders, cameras, gps, a massive computer in the back of an suv, and as they began testing, for everything from speed control to crash avoidance, he listened and listened to what the test drivers told him. >> i hithink one of the biggest secrets to our success was that we work with the blind. >> reporter: the result? a car that electronically watches the road and feeds the driver a stream of information through a simple pair of buzzing gloves and a pad on the seat. so all of these signals are actually coming from the car itself? >> yes. the vibrations in your knuckle tells you how to steer the vehicle.
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the vibration that you feel from the seat and the patterns tell you how to -- the speed the vehicle should operate in. >> reporter: testing is kept to about 25 miles an hour in controlled environments, for now. but hong believes in just 15 years with many refinements, one of these vehicles could truly be ready for the open road. taking blind drivers to the place where limitations end and limitless begins. in just a moment, we will continue the theme with simon says. 100 miles. one very determined man. and one very big obstacle. when "stories: reporter" continues. it's what they do. accept it. you can't change the way banking works. just accept it, man. free ? doesn't close at five ? try nature. you give them all your money, and they put you on hold. just accept it.
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what are you going to do, bury your money in the backyard ? accept it. just stay with the herd, son. accept it. it's only money. it's a bank. what do you want, a hug ? just accept it, friend. hidden fees, fine print, or they'll stick it to you some other way. smile and accept it. it's been this way since pants. accept it... just accept it. accept it. i'm a doctor. just accept it. accept it... accept it. just accept it ! if we miss this movie, you're dead. if you're stuck accepting banking nonsense, you need an ally. ally bank. no nonsense. just people sense. [ siren ] [ applause ] [ jackhammer ] [ crowd cheering ] [ speeding car ] [ siren ] [ horse whinnying ] [ bell dings ] your true self -- uncover it, embrace it, protect it.
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what's healthier than that? ♪ [ female announcer ] the road is not exactly a place of intelligence. highway maintenance is underfunded, costing drivers $67 billion a year, and countless tires. which drivers never actually check because they're busy, checking email. this is why we engineered a car that makes 2,000 decisions every second. the new audi a6 is here. the road is now an intelligent place. ♪
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i tell you what i can spend. i do my best to make it work. i'm back on the road safely. and i saved you money on brakes. that's personal pricing. finally, you can hardly look at the internet these days without finding yet another report of someone doing something amazing. a person scaling unscaleable peak or swimming an unswimmable river. yet when we heard what one man was attempting in fwragreat rhy we thought quite frankly it just couldn't be done. we sent atika shubert to see. >> i think a lot of people find what i'm doing really inspiring. when i first started -- >> reporter: every day a few hours outside of london people see simon wheatcroft running. while he sees something like this. yes.
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wheatcroft is blind. having lost his sight to eye disease in his teens. and, yes, he is running by himself. >> i wanted to do something that was really going to push me. so i chose to run far. >> reporter: really far. about a year ago he decided to prepare for the 100 mile ultra marathon. having lost a sighted running partner and guide, he knew he would have to accomplish the relentless miles of training alone. >> i started in the fields over there running between goal posts. that really didn't work out. >> reporter: he did not like the tedium of treadmills, so he chose a three-mile stretch of sidewalk and memorized it. and he has gone back and forth ever since. >> it perhaps, looks, a lot scarier and more difficult than it is. because that pavement is pretty much the perfect pavement. it runs smooth. there's no real big dips. this is nice. anywhere else, it wouldn't really be possible to do on my
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own. >> reporter: wheatcroft uses a running map on his iphone to keep track of the distance. he uses a human guide in actual races. what he does not use is any kind of excuse. he is a runner. pure and simple. >> personally for me, i think i can compete. in the events i'm competing. i don't think i'm, like, an olympic athlete or anything. in the events i'm competing in, i'm going to be as competitive if not more competitive than anybody else. it depends upon the day. >> reporter: so race day came. wheatcroft put his training to the test. hour after hour, trudging through the english country side. against pouring rain. achi aching muscles. overwhelming fatigue. until at mile 83, in tears, he stopped. now, however, like all those miles and training, wheatcroft is taking the setback in stride. after all, he did prove that his disability was not a problem. and next year, just like any other determined athlete, h


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