tv Situation Room With Wolf Blitzer CNN September 23, 2016 3:00pm-4:01pm PDT
happening now. breaking news. >> don't you do it. keith! keith! don't you do it! [ gunfire ] >> first video we're getting a new and disturbing look at the fatal shooting of an african-american man in charlotte after family releases their cell phone video. tonight, there are more questions whether keith scott had a gun. boiling point. the national guard is on alert in charlotte, with protesters expected back on the streets. just as violence had eased, will the new video spark more unrest and racial tensionsome late to the party. in a stunning reversal, ted cruz now says he will vote for his bitter formal rival donald trump. why is cruz doing this now after refusing to back trump during the republican convention? debate debut. trump and hillary clinton both are behind closed doors preparing for their first face-off. we're getting new details about
their strategies from must-see event that will air live on cnn just three days from now. we want to welcome our viewers in the united states and around the world. i'm wolf blitzer. you're in "the situation room." ♪ this is cnn breaking news. >> breaking news tonight. the gut wrenching first look at the fatal shooting of an african-american man by charlotte police. keith scott's family releasing cell phone video of the incident after police refuse to make their footage of the shooting public. tonight, cnn has learned that police say a gun recovered on the scene was loaded and that fingerprints, blood, and dna on the weapon warere a match with scott. but scott's wife shouted at police that he was not armed. >> he has no weapon. don't shoot him. [ inaudible ]
>> this hour, the city of charlotte is bracing for more protests and the possibility of renewed violence as the first images become public. the national guard will remain deployed through the weekend. also tonight, hillary clinton is urging city officials to release police footage of scott's shooting without delay. she now plans to visit charlotte on sunday on the eve of her first debate with donald trump that will air live here on cnn. also breaking, a campaign shocker. senator ted cruz announcing his endorsement for trump. this comes after their incredibly ugly primary showdown and cruz's snob of trump at the gop convention. tonight, trump says he's honored to have cruz's support. we're covering all of that this hour and much more with our guests, including the president of the national urban lead marc morial, as we cover all the news breaking right now. first, let's go to cnn's brian todd. he's in charlotte with more on
this just released shooting video. brian, what's the latest? >> reporter: wolf, just moments ago we got a statement from an attorney for the family of keith lamont scott having to do with why they released this video. according to this attorney, the family decided to release this in the name of truth and transparency. the family is still hopeful that the charlotte police department and the city of charlotte are going to release the videos that they have, those dash cam and body cam videos that they have, and the family, the attorney says encourages everyone to reserve judgment about the case until the facts are known. the video is indeed, wolf, very, very dramatic and could affect the dynamic on the streets of charlotte tonight. officers can be seen shielding themselves behind other cars. police call out a warning at least half a dozen times. >> drop the gun. >> reporter: his wife begged the officers. >> don't shoot him. >> reporter: and she calls out that scott is not armed and that
he was diagnosed with a traumatic brain injury. >> he has a tbi. he just took his medicine. >> reporter: she also pleads with her husband. >> keith, get out the car. keith, keith! >> reporter: shortly after, shots ring out. [ gunfire ] >> did you shoot him? >> reporter: the graphic cell phone video which until today had not been shop to police or the public, shows parts of tuesday's confrontation between keith scott and charlotte police. at issue is whether when scott exited the vehicle he was holding a gun or threatening officers.
police to release the dash cam video and the body cam video, but you heard the police chief, he told me yesterday now that the state investigative bureau is in charge, it's up to them to decide. apparently they're concerned if they release the video it could undermine the investigation, to which you say what? >> to which i say that i don't understand how it could undermine the investigation at all. i think that's just a poor excuse, and it appears as though yesterday the police chief took full responsibility. i'm not releasing the video. today it's in the hands of the north carolina bureau of investigation. clearly, there's basically a change in the story, a change in who is responsible. what's at stake here is the confidence that people are going to have in that police chief and in his department going forward. and what's at stake here is that that confidence is being eroded by how this is being handled.
the video should be released. you've got a public that's on edge. now you've got another video with audio, which seems to indicate that the wife was warning the police or asking the police or pleading with them not to use any force against her husband, who is now dead. so what i say is, i don't see how it's going to undermine an investigation, because by this point in time, any witnesses should have been interviewed, any forensic evidence that was at the scene has probably been analyzed. look at what happened in tulsa. it simply does not take that amount of time to do at least a preliminary investigation, and public confidence is what's at stake, and now, in the 21st century, with these dash cam videos, they ought to be released and not a continuecont
stonewalling by the police department. >> she did say a number of times her husband has a tbi, a traumatic brain injury, although cops may have not known what that stands for and he's on medication. but the gun police say they recovered from keith scott's shooting was loaded they say. sources say investigators recovered fingerprints, blood, and dna from the weapon that matched one that of scott. so react to that. could that change the direction of this investigation? >> so it's important to know whether the gun was in his hand at the time he was shot. but let's remember, i believe that north carolina is a state where it's legal to carry a gun. remember, per se, simply because he had a gun doesn't mean that's a per se violation of the law.
and that's what's happened across the country as we've expanded "the ability of people to carry guns," it doesn't mean that the police has a reason because someone has a gun, there's no probable cause to arrest anyone if that gun is being carried legally. so it's material, wolf. that's why we need the video, so that all of the facts -- what we've got is a drip, drip, drip of facts. you've got the police which seeming to want to release information and leak information that they think is favorable to their side. which is there was a gun, there was dna on the gun, blood on the gun. clearly that means forensic examination of that gun has taken place. yet on the other hand, they don't want to release the video. so what they're doing is undercutting their own credibility by releasing certain evidence or releasing certain evidence through sources, and on the other hand not releasing other. you see, this is what is
happening. this is a manipulation of the facts. that's why full transparency is what will restore public confidence so that people will have an opportunity to see what has occurred. >> marc, i want you to stay with us. much more with marc morial right after this quick break. you're not a cook, if you don't cook. you're not a firefighter, if you don't fight fires. or a coach, if you don't coach. and you can't be our leader, if you don't lead. our next president needs to take action on social security, or future generations could lose up to $10,000 a year. we're working hard, what about you? hey candidates, do your jobs. keep social security strong.
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a rare, serious brain infection caused by a virus may be possible. tell your doctor if you have an infection, experience frequent infections, or have flu-like symptoms, or sores. liver problems can occur with entyvio. if your uc or crohn's medication isn't working for you, ask your gastroenterologist about entyvio. entyvio. relief and remission within reach. we're following the breaking news, the first video of the fatal shooting by police in charlotte, north carolina, released by the family of the man shot. police refusing to release their own footage of the confrontation. we're back with marc morial, former mayor of new orleans.
marc, so this week we've seen charlotte and tulsa. we discussed that. are these isolated incidents, or is there a bigger problem in the united states right now? >> you know, it appears as though, wolf, there's a problem we've got to confront this problem of police-community relations. there's just too many incidents. i think there are been several hundred people shot by the police this year already. we have got to confront how you effectively keep communities safe without creating a climate where the community is at odds with the police. yes, it's a broader climate in this country, and it's part of this unfortunate cycle of violence we have in america. mass killings, terrorism, crime, police shooting citizens all too often. you know, i just believe that it
points to a larger issue in america, and to suggest that it isn't a problem, to suggest that there's not a racial element is to really be an ostrich and put your head in the sand and pretend it doesn't exist. everyone wants effective policing. everyone wants safe communities. the objectives are the same. but somehow along the way, somehow the climate of now is that the trust factors in many communities, we hear about the cities that have problems. we don't really talk about the cities that may have good relations, have a better situation. but this is part of a larger pattern. i think the president's 21st century policing initiative, our recommendations on how to reform police, all of these should be taken very seriously by cities, by mayors, by police chiefs, by rank and file police officers,
by communities, to try to advance the idea that we need to reform the relationship between police and community in this country. >> as you know, the first presidential debate monday night will be seen of course here on cnn. you've said each of the candidates needs to be more specific when it comes to how they would ensure what you call each citizen has equal political power. what would you like to hear? >> you know, i would like to hear commitments on an extension of the voting rights act. i would like to hear commitments on what specifics are there to deal with the jobs crisis that exists in many parts of urban america. i would like to see specifics on reformation of the criminal justice system. i would like to see a commitment to education and to educating our young people, specifics on that, not just rhetoric, not just slogans. what is your plan? how are you going to deploy presidential leadership. and this idea that's really important is how are you going
to heal and bring this nation together for purpose and for cause and for the 21st century? >> and you don't believe that donald trump and hillary clinton have laid out those plans? >> well, let me say this, wolf. we should all wait until monday. the debate is probably going to be watched by many americans. i'll be like many for 90 minutes. i'm going to be glued to my television set and i want to hear the responses and the answers. so it's an opportunity to talk specifics. it's a wide ranging format. i know there's going to be some sharp exchanges, which we all like. because in a democracy we like that fierce debate. but i want to hear specifics from these candidates and i expect that it's going to be an interesting monday. >> it certainly will be. it will be aired, of course, right here on cnn. marc, thank you very much. marc morial with the national urban league. just ahead, we'll show you all
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video released today and talk about it with our experts. >> don't shoot him. he has no weapon. he has no weapon. don't shoot him. [ inaudible ] >> don't shoot him. don't shoot him. he didn't do anything. >> drop the gun! drop the gun! >> he doesn't have a gun. he has a tbi. he's not going to do anything to you guys. he just took his medicine. >> drop the gun! >> keith, don't let them break the window. come on out the car. >> drop the gun! >> keith, don't do it. >> drop the gun! >> keith, get out the car. keith! keith, don't you do it. don't you do it. keith! keith! don't you do it. [ gunfire ] >> did you shoot him? did you shoot him?
did you shoot him? he better not be dead. he better not be [ bleep ] dead. i know that [ bleep ] much. i know that much, he better not be dead. i'm not going to come near you, i'm going to record you. he better be alive, because -- he better be alive! yes, we're over here at 9453 lexington court. these are the police officers that shot my husband and he better live. he better live. because he didn't do nothing to them. ain't nobody touch nobody. i know he better live. i know he better live. how about that? i'm not coming to you guys, but he better live. he better live. y'all hear this and you see this, right? he better live. he better live. i swear he better live. yep, he better live. he better [ bleep ] live.
he better live. where is -- he better [ bleep ] live, and i can't believe [ bleep ]. i ain't going nowhere! did y'all call the police -- i pambulance?all call the >> let's bring in john lemon, and tom fuentes. tom, what's your reaction to this video? it's raised questions about a gun that police say they recovered at the scene. there doesn't appear to be a gun, at least in this video, but a picture we saw earlier in the week did appear to show one by his feet. what is your reaction? >> from the angle of that video that she's taking, i don't think you could see a gun whether he had one or not. you don't see a clear view of his hands or whether he has one as he stepped out of the car and at the time he was shot. you do hear the police officers yelling at him emphatically five or six times to drop the gun.
and then later, you know, when the gun is recovered, you would have had this massive conspiracy of, you know, all of these police officers at the scene lying about that gun and about the fingerprints or the crime scene investigation of the gun. then you have crime lab analysis of the dna, blood, other material with that gun. so they would all have to be lying. then all the way up to the chief of police lying. i just find it hard to believe that you would have up to a dozen professional law enforcement officers, technicians, and analysts, lie about that gun and about the fingerprints and blood and dna on that gun. >> laura, do you see any inconsistencies between this video, it's more than two minutes we just saw, and the account originally given by police? >> absolutely. in fact, what tom is talking about, finding it so hard to disbelieve that these officers are involved in any unlawful
action is exactly whey the officers don't want to release the footage. what they're trying to do is what a prosecutor can do in a grand jury scenario, where their cu curate the evidence and it becomes a foregone conclusion for the grand jury. to suggest that they're not at all, and what that does is show that there is a deliberate effort made by the police to ensure that the investigation is not the problem, but the investigators, their credibility is not undermined. >> don, what is your reaction that the family of keith scott released this video directly to the news media? i want to read a brief statement, today's decision to release cell phone video was made by the scott family in the name of truth and transparency. the family is still hopeful that
the city of charlotte will release all available video of the incident to the public so team can draw their own conclusions about keith's death. this is simply one step in our quest to find the truth for this family. they released it publicly, the video. they didn't apparently release it first to the police department. what do you think about that? >> i don't know. maybe you know more than i do. i'm not sure if they didn't show police, but you're right, they in fact did release it to the public. it showed up in the media, and everyone saw it on television for the first time. i think it speaks to that statement. i think it speaks to the heartbreak of the family. no one more than them wants to know what happened to their family member. and i think that's really all they want. from speaking to the attorneys today several times, as they have said to me, we're not trying to accuse anybody of
anything, we want it out there for people to see. they have a lot of questions and from what tom said about the community, i think that this speaks to the distrust in the community, to the police officers. you know, he's saying from the police chief on down there would have to be a whole lot of people lying. i would tend to agree with them, but those things have happened before. i'm not saying it's happened in this particular situation. but it also speaks to how the community and police distrust each other and that there is this disconnect there and that they would come together and speak and talk and say look, we're being transparent, this is a video that we have as a family, that we have as a police department. this is what we can answer now. this is what we cannot answer. i think it would help everyone, especially with the protests that have been going on there, and give this family some peace of mind. >> the former new york police department chief of department phil banks is also joining us. phillip, we can clearly hear officers in the video yelling
"drop the gun, drop the gun" multiple times. does that bolster their original account? >> yes, it would bolster if it went to a grand jury. it could be that they believed they saw a gun and they may have seen a gun. certainly when i listen to the tape of the young lady, the tape, she did not believe that this person had a gun or maybe in fact that he didn't have the gun. but the bigger picture or another picture is what is disturbing to me as an ex-law enforcement official is the lack of tactics that repeatedly is over and over again -- these officers put themselves in a position where they bring it down to a split second decision and they have to use force. i would just suggest and make a plea to these big city mayors and chiefs to look at the tactics being employed. if you believe that this particular person has a weapon, that there is also a time that you can take cover and withdraw from that scene to make sure everyone is safe. putting yourself in a position
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of keith scott, the african-american man that was killed. what about the dash cam, the body cam video that the police have? the family has viewed it. why hold on to that video now, especially now that this other footage has -- >> i think, wolf, now that there has been long enough time to complete the entire crime scene investigation and to interview any and all witnesses that might be involved in this, we're in the fourth or fifth day now, that's enough time. and i think the argument of integrity of the investigation, which even i have been making all these days, reaches a point where it's not going to hurt the investigation to do that. and it may be time to do it. >> so laura, you agree that with the release of this other video, the police should just release everything, is that right? >> well, my opinion is not triggered by the release of this video. i think it's the fact that the chief of police held a press
conference where he described what he saw on the video. he was very specific about how inconclusive it was and other factors. so it's very counterintuitive. but i don't think for one second think there's a big conspiracy here. i'm a prosecutor. i don't deal in emotion, i deal in facts. these videos are just some of the vantage points. but what neither video can show is whether there was provocation to engage in lethal force. that's the question that the prosecutor will have to answer, if they want to try to indict the case or not indict the case, and the eye witness testimony, the only way to get that, not these videos. >> don, the protests in charlotte last night were relatively peaceful. with the new questions raised by the release of this new video from the scott family, you believe the police can continue
to maintain the peace with the national guard troops that have been deployed? >> i think that well-trained police, well-trained police can always do their job properly and can handle big crowds. but i think it would not be necessary perhaps to do that if they just released the video. i think that, of course, with the national guard there, that they can do it. to go back to your previous guest's point, there was also another interview that the police chief did on another network where he said there was other evidence that made him absolutely sure he was confident that the initial reporting of what happened to mr. scott was accurate, that he had a gun and on and on and on. so he is also talking about other evidence that he has seen and other people have not seen, and this video, as well. even though the video is inconclusive and ambiguous in his words. so law enforcement are at an advantage now, which they should be because they're doing the investigation. but they could help with this,
at least giving the public some knowledge of what -- more knowledge of what's going on again by releasing the video and then the police would not have to deal with these crowds and angry protesters. >> phillip banks, if you were in charge of this investigation, what would you do? >> you know, i would have to have a little more facts to answer that question, but being on that side of hundreds of these incidents unfortunately, i just can't fathom a reason why, in your fifth day, that this video is not being released. i would even say after the first or second day, i don't recall a situation where the video is not released. i don't want to be in the position to second guess this police chief. it appears he has a lot on his hands and he has a great reputation. but sometimes it's part of the police culture to not be transparent, and we start doing things. that video needs to be released. and i don't know who has the right to say whether it's the mayor or the police chief, that
the video has to be released. let everyone make up their mind. i think laura brought up an excellent point when she talked about what led to the police shooting is probably not going to be captured on video. we have to get that video out. you have to get these videos out to the public because they deserve it. >> if i may, wolf, if you would like proof that the charlotte police department is capable of completing an investigation based on a video footage just a few days in, remember, they've already arrested a suspect who is now being charged with having killed another protester in charlotte just two days ago, and how did they do that? based on video footage. they're more than capable of resolving a criminal investigation based on video footage. why not here? the only difference, who was the suspect? a police officer perhaps. >> also, wolf, they could release the dispatch recordings
between the dispatcher and the police officers on the radio with each other, that would be important. what were they told when they ran that license plate and approached that vehicle? what did they know? >> all good points indeed. and it's a whole new world out there with body camera video, all the cell phone video. police have a lot of video to review right now, and the public does, as well. thanks to all of you. don, by the way, will be back with much more on the breaking news, 10:00 p.m. eastern, two hours of live coverage tonight. we'll see him then. more breaking news ahead. former president jimmy carter and his wife are still building homes for habitat for humanity, a tradition they started more than 30 years ago. >> we've built only 5,000 houses now. it's been one of the most gratifying and challenging things we've ever done,
physically speaking. >> he was 56 and fresh out of the white house when he first took up the hammer as a volunteer home builder. >> we're now building one home each day for poor people in need. >> i happen to be a christian. it's a way to put my religious beliefs into practice, and this is the best way i know. >> habitat for humanity fields 1400 groups in 70 countries. they raise awareness for the need of more affordable housing and bring volunteers together to build and renovate homes. >> the organization needs volunteers to serve food or build a house almost everywhere people live in the united states. just the idea of volunteerism has been put on the forefront of
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breaking political news tonight. a stunning reversal by former republican presidential candidate ted cruz after a bitter primary battle and pointed review of donald trump at the republican convention cruz is now endorsing the republican nominee. cruz's surprising turnaround just three days before the first
presidential debate. >> that is right, wolf. and this was a surprising move. it does set aside a bitter primary battle to make this endorsement happen. trump one questioned whether the canadian born cruz was eligible to be president. and a former cruz advisor tells me this move, at least the hope inside the trump campaign is that this will help win back some of those never trump republicans. >> with the clock ticking down to round one of the debates with hillary clinton, donald trump lured a crucial now ally in to his corner. ted cruz. the same texas senator who declined to endorse the gop nominee at the republican convention this summer. >> vote for candidates up and down the ticket who you trust to defend our freedom and to be faithful to the constitution. i appreciate the enthusiasm of the new york delegation. >> cruz says he's backing trump
to keep the supreme court from tilting to the left. adding in a facebook post a year ago i pledge to endorse the republican nominee and i'm honoring that commitment. and if you don't want to' a clinton presidency, i encourage you do vote for him. >> after the violence trump is also previewing his attack against clinton for their first debate accusing her of siding against the police. >> those pedaling the narrative of cops as a racist force in our society and this is a narrative supported with a nod by my opponent. you see what she's saying, and it is not good. shared directly in the responsibility that is the unrest that is afflicting our country. >> the clinton campaign says that is nonsense. clinton campaign says it is all about coming together. >> the you make the relationship between the police and community more adversarial you are not going to close down the gap, you are going to widen the gap. >> clinton's advisors are looking to drive their own
wedge. >> i'd look her right in that fat ugly nas of hearse. >> between trump and new voters in this new ad. >> you treat women with respect? >> i can't say that either. >> top advisor rudy giuliani called trump having a strategy session today. say trump is watching videos of clinton past debates. while clinton is studying briefing books and past debate performances for ways to get under his skin. while the trump campaign is setting low expectations for their candidate the gop nominee has been trash-talking clinton all week. >> where is hillary today? well they say she's been practicing for the debate. some people think she's sleeping. >> reporter: both sides have colorful characters adding to the hype. >> i think people will really get a look at him, that maybe
they haven't seen before. >> while the clinton campaign confirm they have a brash billionaire on their side in mark cuban who tweeted he just got a front row seat to watch clinton overwhelm trump of the hofstra on monday. >> both trump and clinton will be back in debate preb this weekend but not before a full two days before their face-off. and the clinton campaign says the democratic nominee will visit charlotte on sunday. and wolf we just found out that israeli prime minister bing men net netanyahu will be -- ted cruz surprised a lot of us. formally almost enthusiastically endorsed trump today.
this was a surprise. >> yeah. i think it was a big surprise. there were people who were urging him to do it. i think for his own political future he was getting a lot of push back in the state of texas. so i think this is as much about ted cruz if not more than it is about donald trump. the reason people are surprised is because he called donald trump a pathological liar, a coward. he spoke before the republican convention without endorsing trump. urging people to vote their conscious and said it was a matter of principle. to reporters. so you could say people were surprised and stun by this. >> remember at one point even raised questions answer ted cruz's father whether or not he had been involved in the assassination of of president kennedy. that's a pretty bitter spill to swael low for ted cruz right no
president obama says be yourself, explain what motivates are you. >> well i think she certainly wants to get under donald trump's skin. she wants to prove he doesn't have the temperament to be president. i think she also wants to show that she is more prepared. and use it in a way that exposes the lighter debate preparation that donald trump had been doing. and you are going to have a lot of voters who go into the debate essentially hating both candidates so you also need to give people a reason to like you. to want to vote for you. that is going to be a challenge. she needs to prove to people that she does have a softer side and show who she is as a person and kbif people a reason to trust her. i think both candidates going with really steep challenges wolf. >> and jim acosta still with us. the trump campaign seems to be lower expectations. is that a savvy strategy? >> i think so, wolf. >> earlier this week they put out this memo, this debate
expectations memo saying hillary clinton is almost too prepared. donald trump is going to be himself. he's not one who overprepares for the debates. but they have been opaque about their own debate preparations. we know they were preparing for the debate today. didn't want to admit but they were preparing for the debate today. and one other thing i just wanted point the out quickly on ted cruz. i talked to an advisor. they are still upset inside his world that donald trump has not apologized to ted cruz for those comments about his father. for that retweet of that unflattering picture of his wife. so he's bringing a more united party to the convention on monday but they feel like any other candidate would not have gotten away with those things, wolf. >> is it going to help him a lot gloria? >> it is not going to hurt donald trump because the one question conservatives have had about him is, is he
conservative? and if you get the vote of ted cruz that matters. cruz obviously feels trump is with him on the supreme court issue. and that's his number one issue. >> erin burnett "outfront" starts right now. "outfront" next. breaking news. video of the deadly charlotte police shooting released by the victim's family. what does it show? we'll talk to the charlotte's mayor jennifer roberts. and we're going to breakdown the video with our experts. and anthony bourdain on slurping soup with president obama and why the secret service is so mad. let's go "outfront." ♪ good evening, i'm erin burnett. out front we begin with breaking news. the video of the standoff between cha