tv CNN Newsroom With Brooke Baldwin CNN March 23, 2021 12:00pm-1:00pm PDT
you are watching cnn on this tuesday afternoon. i'm brooke baldwin. thank you for being with me. i want to begin about brand-new information we have about this deadly shooting at a boulder, kol colorado, grocery store. this happened yesterday. this is the seventh mass shooting in this country in ten days. ten lives are lost after a gunman open fire inside this king soopers grocery store. the youngest victim, 20 years young. the oldest, 65. at least one was a supermarket employee and another an 11-year veteran police officer. >> i'm going to read the names of the deceased. denny strong, 20 years old.
neven stanisic, 23. rikki olds, 25. tralona bartkowiak, 49. suzanne fountain, 59. teri leiker, 51. officer eric talley, 51. kevin mahoney, 61. lynn murray, 62. jody waters, 65. our hearts go out to all the victims killed during this senseless act of violence. >> those are the victims. as for the suspect, he is in custody. a 21-year-old man. we are now learning that video captured. here he is just yesterday of a man being taken into custody is, indeed, the suspect. he was shot in the leg, was taken to the hospital. he was booked into the boulder county jail today, where he will be formally charged with ten counts of first-degree murder.
according to new court documents, we understand the suspect apparently stripped off his clothing before surrendering to authorities. while he refused to answer any question, he did reportedly ask the authorities to speak to his mother. but, that's about the suspect. we are getting so much tragic information about the victims. and the impact suffered by this community. take a listen to what the boulder police chief had to say about how this affected her and the community. >> i feel numb. and it's heartbreaking. it's heartbreaking to talk to victims, their families. you know, it's tragic. this officer had seven children. ages 5 to 18. i just had that officer's whole family in my office two weeks ago to give him an award. and so it is personal. this is my community. i live here. and to have something like this
happen so close to where you live, and to know the fear in the community. and to know that the officers sacrifice themselves. it's heartbreaking. >> reporter: and it is heartbreaking. ten people walked into that store on monday afternoon. ten of them never came out. we are grappling with the aftermath of yet another senseless mass shooting here in america. brooke? >> lucy kafanov in boulder. i have sat in this chair too many times during mass shootings. and places we all frequent, movie theaters, churches and now a supermarket. there are a number of witnesses who are speaking out about what they saw, what they heard as they were doing something so mundane as buying groceries. a quick run to the supermarket to buy food for their families.
>> i just looked at my son and i told him in between shots, by the fourth shot, i started counting, and i told him, we have three seconds, stay low and don't look and just move fast. and he almost hesitated. i just told him, we don't have another option. we don't have any more -- any other chance to get out of here. >> what i saw was a terrified face running towards me. she was a woman, you know, shorter than myself. and the first two shots happened, i saw her face and her running down the aisle towards me. i turned and kept up with her and we all ran down the aisle towards the back of the store together. the employees in the back of the house didn't know what was going on, so we told them that there was a shooter, and they told us where the exit was. >> he on his way to the entrance
had turned around and was shooting rapid fire at one particular target. i'm fairly sure it was a person. and then he turned around, he entered the building through the handicap entrance, and a few seconds later, i saw people running out of the building. i heard screaming. i heard people leaving in their cars. and it just devolved into chaos within just a couple of minutes. >> we peeked in and heard a couple more shots go off and i saw another lady laying right this on the ground, right inside the front door. >> at first i heard a loud bang, so i felt a shelf fell over or something like that. immediately when i heard multiple gunshots, i knew that it was something more than that. so, i just made sure i got out of there safely and it was really, truly a horrifying experience. >> while the details from all these witnesses will certainly help police piece together what
unfolded yesterday, they are focusing broad other this suspect and trying to answer the question why. cnn law enforcement analyst, charles ramsey joins us, former chief of the metropolitan police in washington, d.c. commissioner, thank you for jumping on with me. first, the police chief in boulder, talking through -- the words she used, tragic. when you have experienced shootings, right, and so what is it like being a member of law enforcement when you have to be the one to inform these families that their mother, their sister, their son has been killed? >> well, it's the toughest thing you have to do as a police officer. you know, i've worked in homicide back in my days in chicago, pd. i watched detectives as they made those notifications. you never get used to it. and as a police commissioner, i've lost a lot of officers in
the line of duty. speaking with those families, dealing with the tragedy that results from that kind of loss of life, it's something you'll never forget. i could hear the trauma in her voice. i only hope she takes care of herself because i know what it's like. she's got to try to hold it together because she's trying to get her whole department through this period of time. but she has to take care of herself as well. >> she was talking about how this is personal, this is her community, she lost one of her officers, eric talley, first officer on the scene. he was a father of seven. i mean, chief ramsey, if you were leading this police department, and we know officers are trained for this, but what kind of decision is it, right, from an officer's perspective to put your life on the line? is it instinct? and how does a police department deal with the loss of one of its own? >> it's instinct and it's training. i mean, you know, officers have to protect the lives of others. sometimes that means putting your own life at risk.
and so, what that officer did was truly heroic. it took a great deal of courage but he did exactly what he was trained to do. and others that responded to the scene, would have done the same thing. so, it's -- it's tough, but you can't just let innocent people get gunned down. you've got to go after the person that's responsible. but it is traumatic. it's traumatic for an entire agency. i lost eight police officers in the line of duty during my eight years in philadelphia. it's tough. it's very tough. in fact, we had to get psychological counseling for members of our department through university of pennsylvania because it does have an impact, there's no question about that. >> we're getting a little more about the suspect. we know that he was shot in the leg. he has now been booked into the boulder county jail. obviously, police want to determine the motive. the da said the suspected gunman is talking. just tell us how police are
going about questioning him and what they're asking him. >> well, if he's willing to speak, of course, they have to provide him with his miranda rights, whether or not he's going to speak without an attorney present, i don't know, but certainly if he's willing to speak, more than likely it will be recorded, video and audio. and they'll try to get to the bottom of it. they'll try to find out exactly, you know, why he did what he did. and they're going to be combing through social media, if they got a computer or a laptop of any kind, cell phone. they'll be going through all that to try to find out exactly what are the sites he was visiting, who he was communicating with. they'll interview relatives, they're interview friends. i mean, there's a lot of work that has to be done now before they're even close to coming up with anything that resembles a motive. they're going to be careful. this guy is still alive, so there's going to be a trial. unlike many active shooters that wind up killing themselves or
killed by police, upyou know, they've got to prepare for trial so they are going to be very, very careful with this. >> just listening to our correspondent, lucy, she was relaying details that the suspect's brother said they immigrated from syria, he said his brother may have been suffering from mental illness, he was bullied in high school because he was muslim. as investigators look for motive, how much do those details really matter? >> listen, the prosecutor will be prepared to deal with that. obviously, that will probably be a defense. i mean, i feel no empathy for this guy at all, so forgive me for that, but i just absolutely don't. >> no, no forgiveness needed. >> there is no excuse to go and kill people. there are many people who suffer from mental illness. they don't do this kind of thing. i mean, that's just -- it's just totally unacceptable. so, i don't go for it. not for a second. but, you know, obviously his
family, people close to him, defense counsel, they will all try to put that sort of thing out there on the table. hopefully it doesn't work. >> former commissioner charles ramsey, thank you so much for your expertise and perspective. appreciate it. as for the politics of all of this, republicans are already pushing back against new gun control measures in the wake of the shooting in boulder. will anything be different this time? we'll talk about it with congressman ted deutch who represents parkland, florida, and has been fighting for tougher gun laws. we're learning new details about the victims of this senseless rampage. we remember them, ahead. you're watching cnn. i'm brooke baldwin. locating yh the touch of a button might seem... excessive. unless... getting lost is the whole point. ♪ ♪
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we are back. you're watching cnn. president joe biden reacting today to this mass shooting in colorado where ten people have been killed. speaking from the white house, the president called on congress to pass several gun safety measures, including banning assault weapons and closing loopholes in the background check system. >> the united states senate, i hope some are listening, should immediately pass the two house bills that closed loopholes in the background check system. these are bills that receive votes of both republicans and democrats in the house. this is not and should not be a partisan issue. this is an american issue. it will save lives. americans lives. and we have to act.
we should also ban assault weapons in the process. >> let's go to our cnn chief white house correspondent kaitlan collins. just listening to the president, what can he do to get lawmakers to actually act? >> reporter: well, it seems like he is certainly going to publicly pressure them to do so. he said earlier when he was speaking just for about six minutes before leaving the white house for ohio that he hoped these senators were listening to his comments. calling on them to pass those bills on background checks that have made it through the house, but as we know, do face a really uphill battle in this senate. whether or not that would look like getting people on board because, of course, this can't be passed through reconciliation, which you saw with the coronavirus relief bill. they would have to get ten republicans on board. they are not anywhere close to that yet. if you watched that senate judiciary hearing this morning, you could see just how divided republicans and democrats are. despite what you heard from president biden this morning. and so what we do know, in
addition to what he is calling on congress to do, he's also considering a range of executive actions. he said he would use the tools at his disposal to make these changes because he says he doesn't want to just see, what he was saying the senate should pass, those house bills, he also wants a ban on assault weapons he was calling for. so, we're waiting to see what he's going to try to put forward when it comes to gun legislation. we do know he's working on these executive orders. the white house press secretary jen psaki told reporters they should not expect anything immediate to happen in the next 24 hours or so. we may hear more from president biden himself on this as time goes on. >> great. i have a congressman waiting in the wings which led the charge on the house side. kaitlan, because i have you, we just got word that senator tammy duckworth is planning to block all of president biden's nominees until she gets a more diverse, you know, commitment.
what is this about? >> reporter: well, this all really came to a head last night when there was this conference call basically between the white house and senate democrats where not just senator duckworth, but mazie hirono were talking to the white house and talking to him about the fact that in the president's cabinet there are no asian-americans representing any of those positions. we've talked about how diverse his cabinet is and the figure heads in it. we know the vice president's heritage, and we know katherine thai, the next trade representative but those are not major cabinet level positions. they were pressuring the white house saying they need to have some of that representation, giving the national conversation we've been having around not just that shooting last week but, of course, the pandemic. now she is saying she is going to vote no on all no diversity nominees coming out of the white house until they commit to make that move. we've asked the white house about this. they haven't gotten back to us yet. we should note that last night when they brought this up on the call, they brought it up to one
of biden's senior advisers who pointed to harris and katherine, but they don't think that is sufficient. >> kaitlan collins, thank you very much, at the white house. let's get back to what's happened in boulder and across the country. with me now, democratic congressman of florida, representative ted deutch. he is the chief whip of the house gun violence prevention task force, represents the district of parkland, florida, where just a few short years ago 17 people were murdered during that murder at the high school. thank you for joining me. >> thanks, brooke. here we are again. >> here we are again. another mass shooting in america. i was talking to you during the commercial break, i remember standing next to you, in park larnd, not a dry eye between either of us after we heard that mother slhrieking after she
learned she lost a daughter. and 24 hours later people were calling for common sense gun reform, expanded background checks and this is how republicans are responding. listen. >> and every time there's a shooting, we play this ridiculous theater. where this committee gets together and proposes a bunch of laws that would do nothing to stop these murders. democrats propose taking away guns from law-abiding citizens. when you disarm law-abiding citizens, you make them more likely to be victims. if you want to stop these murders, go after the murderers. >> congressman, you passed two bills in the house. they're not going anywhere in the senate. just for everyone at home who's watching all of this, who feels gun reform is hopeless, can you honestly tell them otherwise? >> i can. i can. and i'm going to tell you why. first of all, senator -- senator
cruz knows what that he's saying is absolutely false. ridiculous theater is what we watched from him. what we see time and time again from my republican colleagues and republicans in the senate, who stand in the way of meaningful gun safety legislation, there is no constitutional right for someone to buy an ar-15 and shoot up a school, or to go shoot up a concert. there is no constitutional prohibition on congress taking meaningful action to help save lives. no, i am not giving up. there is not just a call. there is a demand. there is outrage that what happened in boulder is all too normal. we cannot accept it as normal. not today. not ever. those shrieks you talked about, brooke, those shrieks are
happening -- they happened in at least ten households in boulder. they are happening across atlanta. they have happened in city after city, house after house, all across this country. and tomorrow is the -- this week is the anniversary -- three-year anniversary of march for our lives. young people in our country will not allow people like ted cruz to call this theater when it is their lives who are -- that are at risk every single day, whether walking to school in some places, whether in school in others, or when their parents are going to the grocery stores. >> okay. i just appreciate where you're coming from all of this and this has been so personal to you, given what happened in parkland. the other piece of this is members of your own party. first of all, big picture. a democrat in the white house, democrats control the house and the senate, but a big reason the bills in the house cannot get through the senate is because of the filibuster, and democratic senator joe manchin still opposes any changes to it. what is your message to senator
manchin right now? >> well, i think we can all agree that the filibuster was never put into place to prevent congress from acting to save the lives of our constituents, our neighbors, our friends. that's not its role. so, when we talk about reform of the filibuster, and senator manchin has indicated that he might be willing, i believe, might be willing to do what the president has also talked about, which is to go back to the talking filibuster or whatever it is they call it, but the idea -- the idea is that senator cruz and others, you want ridiculous theater, make them go to the senate floor and talk on and on and on about why it's more important to protect the gun industry and the profits of the gun industry than it is to stand up for the victims, their
families and our neighbors to keep this country safe. that's the kind of reform that i think would lead to meaningful change. and i hope that we all can come together and acknowledge that the filibuster shouldn't stop us from saving lives. right now to simply say that to pass anything, universal background checks, it has the support of people, the vast majority of americans, democrats and republicans alike, need 60 votes. well, let them go stand and tell the world why this is something that we shouldn't pass because they're not going to succeed. they're going to fail because this is what we need to do. we're hearing from our constituents now and demand action. we can do it. but we need to come together and not talk about what happens the next time, but work right now with the president leaning in right now to get something done. >> you mentioned the president. for people watching who maybe
aren't as familiar with president biden's past, then senator joe biden in the '90s he helped pass the brady bill which mandated background checks, and in '94 he helped the crime bill and fast forward to sandy hook as he was vice president in the obama administration, the president then tasked him with coming up with these legislative proposals. in listening to president biden today, congressman, he talked so much on the campaign bill about bipartisanship. i know a number of republicans are retiring. on his question, what are the chances that on their way out the door, any of them would be willing to vote for a bipartisan bill? how would you approach them? >> well, it's just a matter of standing up for your community and the safety of your community. it's not as if -- it's not as if we've never come together in a moment of crisis to act in the best interest of our country.
our history is full of those examples. brooke, this is that moment. >> how do you get these republicans who have thus far not agreed with you, if they're leaving congress? how do you get them to change their minds? >> i don't -- look, ultimately i think you have to appeal to people's conscience. everyone who does this job, everyone who has the privilege of serving the public ultimately has to do what they think is in the best interest of their community and when they're done serving, no matter how long they've been here, they're going to take with them a legacy. and why wouldn't you want your legacy to be that in your last moments here, you finally stood above the noise of special interests and stood up for families who have lost loved ones and survivors of gun violence and people who witness everyday gun violence in their communities? >> will you -- will you be proactive in approaching them
using the tactics you described? >> yes. 100%. but it's not just me. brooke, it's not just me. it's the young people and the families and the families in parkland i've gotten to know and the families around the country i've gotten to know. all you have to do is spend time listening to them talk about the hole in their lives and how that hole will never be filled. here's a chance for them to do something to prevent other families from ever having to experience that. that's a pretty compelling message. i'm happy to give it, but there are so many people, including my colleague and friend, lucy mcbeth, who experienced this awful pain herself, whose voices need to be listened to. >> she lost her son jordan because he was playing his music too loud in a parking lot. we'll hopefully talk to her later this week. congressman ted deutch, thank you very much. >> brooke, thanks.
and thanks for always, always focusing on this issue and the ability for us to try to come together to solve it and to save lives. >> i appreciate that. i appreciate that very much. congressman ted deutch, thank you. we are learning more information about the victims of this shooting. one of the ten killed. the police officer here being described as a hero. he was the first officer on the scene, father of seven. we'll tell you what more we know about him. and an independent review board raises concerns about astrazeneca's recent announcement on its own u.s. vaccine trial. those details next.
at a press conference today, authorities in colorado released the names of all of those killed in the shooting. and the victims range in age from 20 years of age to 65. many were running routine errands when the shots rang out. cnn's stephanie elam joins me now. stephanie, just tell me about who these people were. >> right. we just got their names today, brooke, so we're starting to learn more and more about these victims who lost their lives on what should have been just a normal average monday. let's start off by talking about that one police officer we know lost his life. officer eric talley who responded within minutes of the 911 call. that there were shots being fired. ran in to help people and lost
his life. the police chief of the boulder police department speaking very highly of him and the kind of man he was. take a listen to what she had to say. >> officer talley taught cpr, taught his family cpr. officer talley, one of his sons swallowed a quarter, and because officer talley taught his children cpr, one much his sons was able to save the little boy's life. and so the boulder police department just gave the son an award for life saving. >> and she was emotional while she did talk about this police officer. she also made it very clear this is also her community where she lives, very close to where the shooting happened. so, impacting people deeply. she said he was a caring man, he cared about his police officers, he cared about his family, his community, and he didn't have to be a police officer. he had a career before this and became a police officer at the age of 40 in 2010, and was
recently, according to his father homer, telling our affiliate, looking to change, to becoming a drone operator because he wanted to do something that was a little safer. considering he's now leaving behind his wife and seven children. so, just a devastating loss there. his police cruiser is now parked in front of the police station as a memorial to him right now. and people have been putting flowers out there. we can see that, as you take a look at that picture, remembering this man who by all accounts, was described as a hero. one other person we're learning a bit about today is rikki olds. she was 25 years old and a front-end manager inside of the grocery store, the king soopers there in boulder. her uncle confirming to cnn that she did, in fact, die. she said she was just a very individual -- described her as an independent young woman who lived by herself and was raised by her grandparents.
he went on to say she was energetic, charismatic and also said, quote, she was a shining light in this dark world. >> our hearts are going out to all of these families and this community. stephanie elam, thank you so much for getting some details of these folks. boulder's police chief has called the shooting, quote, very complex, with the investigation taking days to complete. we'll talk about the questions authorities, specifically including the fbi, are trying to answer now. your car insurancezes so you only pay for what you need. thank you! hey, hey, no, no limu, no limu! only pay for what you need. ♪ liberty. liberty. liberty. liberty. ♪ if you're 55 and up, t- mobile has plans built just for you. switch today and get 2 lines of unlimited and 2 free smartphones. plus you'll now get netflix on us. all this for up to 50% off vs. verizon. it's all included. 2 lines of unlimited for only $70 bucks.
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apprehended by police, was shot in the leg, now in jail charged with ten counts, ten counts of first-degree murder. the suspect's brother says he believes his brother was mentally ill, was bullied in high school for being muslim. this is the seventh mass shooting in seven days in the united states. chris swecker is former fbi investigator. pleasure. we sit here and we think about the ten families now mourning the loss of their loved ones today, wondering how and why this happened. how will investigators get them the answers they deserve? >> yeah, brooke, this is an all too common occurrence in this country. the law enforcement agencies will partner up with the fbi. they'll build out a profile of this person. he'll look at all his social media, his computer, laptop, electronic evidence of every variety and figure out a motivation. they always wanted to find that out. was mental illness a factor?
did anyone help him get his hands on this weapon? was he eligible to get a weapon or did someone help him? we find in many cases, someone assisted them and they're chargeable. they're processing the crime scene. that's very complicated. it can be. you have to trade -- pullout all the led out of the walls, follow the bullet trajectories, how many rounds were fired, et cetera. and match it with the weapon. >> so, as they are certainly now that tedious process is ongoing, we're getting a little bit about the suspect from his brother. he told cnn that his family immigrated from syria about ten years ago, that his brother, as i mentioned, might be suffering mental illness, he was bullied in high school for being muslim. certainly, no justification for, you know, killing anyone, but does that even factor into the investigation? how would that? >> it does factor into the
investigation from a motive perspective. he's charged with ten counts of murder, first-degree murder. that's an intent crime. they have to prove the intent. motivation is relative to that. that could be possibly a defense. he's going to get probably a public defender. they'll look at every angle. mental illness seems to always come into play in these mass shootings. we've seen it in the university and high school setting, bullying has been a factor, but it's not much of a mitigating factor to try to get someone off. >> i'm left thinking, you think of all these victims, specifically this police officer in boulder, eric talley, first officer on the scene, father of seven, wanted to go be a drone officer, a drone pilot because it would take him out of harm's way. but he was trained -- i know officers, fbi, you're trained for this, to put your life on the line. have you been in a situation like this when your instinct kicks in? how does someone make a snap decision to run toward the thing
that everyone else is running away from? >> yeah, that's law enforcement training. it's instinctive. parkland notwithstanding, 99.9% of police officers will go straight to the sound of gunfire. they're trained now to take that shooter out, to distract the shooter and stop the killing. so, that's the protocol now. we've come a long way since columbine. even if they're alone, even if they're outnumbered, you'll see police officers run to the sound of gunfire. it's a shame they have to go up against an ak-47 or an assault rifle. i can't do this segment without mentioning the international association of chiefs of police have kam out against assault weapons. >> and you heard the president, you know, saying as much today. it's really up to, as we've been having these conversations, two bills passed in the house. it's up for the senate to act. chris, thank you very much. >> thank you. also today, new developments in the coronavirus pandemic.
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a potential setback for drug-maker astrazeneca's plan to get its covid vaccine approved in the u.s. on its current timeline. an independent review board says astrazeneca may have used outdated information in its announcement on the findings of its u.s.-based vaccine trial. meantime as more and more americans are getting the shots in arms, right, trouble could be brewing for johnson & johnson over when it will deliver those 20 million single-dose vaccines. cnn's nick watt has more on
today's covid-19 headlines. >> reporter: one in four americans have now had at least one vaccine dose. >> it's been a horrible year. i will remember this year for the rest of my life. >> reporter: but it's not over. the road to herd immunity long and winding. yesterday astrazeneca celebrated results from its vaccine trials. today pushing back and promising to share their primary analysis with the review board that raised concerns that the company may have used some outdated information in a press release. >> this is really what you call an unforced error because the fact is this is very likely a very good vaccine. >> the public should rest assured that nothing will get approved unless the fda does a thorough analysis of this data. >> reporter: and with the three vaccines already authorized, the white house still confident of reaching its goal, enough doses for all by end of may, although
johnson & johnson now has just eight days to meet its goal of 20 million doses delivered by end of march. >> the company reiterated publicly that they are on target. they have a big production week ahead. >> reporter: within hours of that statement, a source told cnn that j&j will only get halfway to 20 million by month's end. meantime, the average daily death toll in the u.s. just dropped below 1,000 for the first time in nearly five months, but the country's average new case count still stuck at over 50,000 a day. >> that's not good. they should keep going down and down. when the plateau like that, there really is a danger of a resurgence. >> reporter: and with time, tiredness and vaccines, our guard is slipping. nearly half of americans, according to one poll, went out to eat in the past week.
and some new vaccine numbers, and they are good. the white house says they have 27 million doses to allocate this week. you know, the day will come when supply meets demand, not yet, but it will come. a good sign for monday. texas is going to open vaccine eligibility to every adult in the state. brooke? >> oh, i needed something to smile about today. nick watt, thank you for that. thank you, and a reminder to all of us. please tune in from this unprecedented event with dr. sanjay gupta this weekend. the medical leader of the war on covid will be sneaking out here on cnn so tune in sunday night at 9:00 eastern. after the second mass shooting in the u.s. in less than a week the white house is considering executive action. what president biden could do to strengthen our nation's gun laws.
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welcome to "the lead." i'm jake tapper. we begin with the national lead. today we see evidence of three different national tragedies going on in the united states beyond the covid pandemic. we begin with the latest in the epidemic of gun violence in this country and the latest tragedy out of boulder, the shooting yesterday afternoon at the king's sooper market com