Fugitive movie director Roman Polanski is behind bars in Switzerland vowing to fight extradition to the U.S. Even his victim, who he had sex when she was 13, thinks the case should be dropped. We're digging deeper. Plus, an exclusive look at domestic terrorists. We give you an inside look at the Earth Liberation Front. And, a high school student murdered on the streets of Chicago. The crime caught on tape. Dozens watched and did nothing to help him. Who's looking out for Chicago's kids? We're keeping them honest.
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John King | BIO
CNN Chief National Correspondent
Anchor, State of the Union
It is a week that will see a potentially defining test in the health care debate, and yet those negotiations are likely to be overshadowed by a set in which Iran has a seat at the table and at which the administration's new claim of leverage in the nuclear standoff with Iran will be put to the test.
"Prove it," was Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's to-the-point refrain when asked on the CBS program "Face the Nation" about Iran's claims its newly disclosed underground nuclear facility was for peaceful purposes and that the international outrage was much ado about nothing.
Editor's Note: This article written by Roman Polanski's victim was published on Feb. 23, 2003 - just days before the Academy Awards where the fugitive filmmaker earned Best Director honors for "The Pianist." Polanski was arrested over the weekend in Switzerland and could be extradited to the U.S. to face charges in the case.
For the Los Angeles Times
I met Roman Polanski in 1977, when I was 13 years old. I was in ninth grade that year, when he told my mother that he wanted to shoot pictures of me for a French magazine. That's what he said, but instead, after shooting pictures of me at Jack Nicholson's house on Mulholland Drive, he did something quite different. He gave me champagne and a piece of a Quaalude. And then he took advantage of me. FULL POST
Roman Polanski's fugitive days are over. The Academy Award-winning director is under arrest in Switzerland and vowing to fight extradition to California to face charges in connection with a 1977 sex crime involving a 13-year-old girl. Swiss police arrested Polanski Saturday when he arrived in Zurich for a film festival, where he was to receive an honorary award.
The 76-year-old had been living in France for decades to avoid U.S. authorities. You may recall, he declined to attend the Academy Awards in 2003, when he won Best Director for "The Pianist." That's because he would have been arrested once he set foot on U.S. soil.
Let's rewind to 1977. That's when Polanski pleaded guilty to having sex with a minor. He was 43 at the time. The incident happened during a photo shoot at actor Jack Nicholson's home. Nicholson was not at home. Polanski fled before he could be sentenced.
There have been several attempts over these past three decades to settle the sex case, but Polanski has always refused to come back to the U.S.
The movie director started a new life in France. He got married and is the father of two children.
Do you think Polasnki should fight extradition or face justice in California?
Prosecutors have argued it would be a miscarriage of justice to allow a man to go free who "drugged and raped a 13-year-old girl."
He also has a lot of supporters who think the case should be dropped, including the victim.
Now 45, married and known as Samantha Geimer, she made her identity public years ago, because she said she was disturbed at how the criminal case was being handled.
She sued Polanski in civil court, which led to an undisclosed settlement. In court documents filed earlier this year, she said, "I am no longer a 13-year-old child... Every time this case is brought to the attention of the court, great focus is made of me, my family, my mother and others. That attention is not pleasant to experience and is not worth maintaining over some irrelevant legal nicety, the continuation of this case."
We'll have all the angles on this story tonight.
Plus, we're digging deeper into the murder of high-school honors student, Derrion Albert, in Chicago. The killing was caught on tape. Dozens of people saw the beating, but no one did anything. Four teenagers have been charged with the murder.
Albert's grandfather, Joseph Walker, told CNN affiliate WLS-TV that his grandson was a good kid who didn't deserve to die.
"He was in bible class this Tuesday night. Church on Sunday," Walker told WLS-TV. "I have no trouble out of my grandson whatsoever. This thing that happened to him is so horrific that we just don't know what we're going to do. We lost a really dear friend in my grandson. He was a blessed child."
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"In a related story, Hell froze over."
Editor's Note: Three teenagers have been charged with first-degree murder in the death of a 16-year-old boy whose beating was captured on amateur video.Nineteen-year-old Silvanus Shannon, 16-year-old Eric Carson and 18-year-old Eugene Riley were charged as adults with first degree felony murder, said Tandra Simonton, spokesperson for the Cook County States Attorney. They are charged in the death of Derrion Albert, an honors student who was beaten to death last Thursday. An amateur videotape of the beating has been broadcast nationally.
A Better LA
A BETTER LA, founded by USC football head coach Pete Carroll, is an organization comprised of local leaders from the private, non-profit, social service, faith-based, education and law enforcement sectors. It is committed to supporting Los Angeles communities in their goal to reduce violence by empowering change.
Pete Carroll will be on tonight to discuss the violence among youths in Chicago and what kind of work Chicago might do to combat the cycle of violence and killings.
Days before a key meeting with Western leaders, Iran test-fired two types of long-range missiles Monday in part of what the Islamic republic called routine military exercises, its state-run media reported.
The tests drew condemnation from France, which noted through its Foreign Ministry that the action comes only a week after Iran revealed the existence of a covert uranium enrichment site.
"These tests can only reinforce the worries of countries in the surrounding region and the international community, especially as Iran is, in parallel, developing a nuclear program, with the existence of a clandestine uranium enrichment site having just been revealed," the ministry said.
CNN Legal Analyst
CNN Legal Analyst Lisa Bloom will be on tonight with Jeffrey Toobin to discuss the implications of Polanski's arrest. Check out her Facebook posts on the topic.
Oh, the irony: Roman Polanski fled because he was afraid of being a victim in an American prison of the identical act he inflicted on the 13-year-old girl he drugged. Celebs now flocking to the defense of this rapist and fugitive. Would they support a statutory exception in our child rape laws for all rich and talented people? Or just for this one?
I'm covering Polanski on CBS Evening News and AC360° tonight. Here come all the excuses for the child rape: her mother let her go off with him; she was a few weeks from her 14th birthday; victim's forgiven him; he's talented, rich and famous; he's had a hard life; time has passed. Pul-ease. Why are we so willing to allow a man who drugged and sodomized a child to escape justice?
After 30 years as a fugitive from U.S. justice for luring a 13 year old girl to a hotel room and having sex with her, director Roman Polanski is arrested in Switzerland and can be extradited back here. Does it matter that the girl has publicly forgiven him? Hell no. I don't care how many glitzy awards you've won. Get back over here and face the consequences of your sick crime. Thoughts?
His 13 year old victim's chilling grand jury testimony from 1977: she said "no" and "stop" repeatedly to the vaginal and anal intercourse he insisted o...n, she could barely walk from the booze and Quaalude he gave her, she was scared and crying. He pleaded guilty, then fled and enjoyed 30 years of freedom. Justice is long overdue here. Thoughts?
Bruce Crumley/ Paris
Although the cultural divide between Europe and the U.S. has narrowed over the years, the legal fate of director Roman Polanski shows there are still major differences. Polanski's arrest in Switzerland on Sept. 26 was greeted with satisfaction in the U.S., where authorities hope he will face sentencing for having sex with a 13-year-old girl in 1977. Europeans, meanwhile, are shocked and dismayed that an internationally acclaimed artist could be jailed for such an old offense.
"To see him thrown to the lions and put in prison because of ancient history — and as he was traveling to an event honoring him — is absolutely horrifying," French Culture Minister Frédéric Mitterrand said after Polanski was arrested upon arrival in Switzerland to attend the Zurich Film Festival, where he was to receive a lifetime achievement award. "There's an America we love and an America that scares us, and it's that latter America that has just shown us its face." In comments that appeared to be directed at Swiss and American authorities to free Polanski, Mitterrand added that both he and French President Nicolas Sarkozy hoped for a "rapid resolution to the situation which would allow Roman Polanski to rejoin his family as quickly as possible."