tv CNN Newsroom With Ana Cabrera CNN October 27, 2018 12:00pm-1:00pm PDT
paid breaks "so that they can respond immediately when needed." vote yes on 11. it is 3:00 mere in new york. noon on the west coast. wherever you're watching around the world, thanks for joining us. i'm alex mar quart here in new york, in this weekend for anna cabrera. it has happened again. a mass shooting in america. several people dead. others wounded. the fbi calling this now a hate crime. now, this is the latest. we now know the killer's name. he is in custody. it happened here at a jewish
synagogue in pittsburgh during saturday services. the gunman walked inside and started shooting. city officials have not yet announced an exact death toll. they only said there are multiple fatalities and the scene inside the temple is very bad. the man who opened fire on that synagogue has been identified, robert bowers, 46 years old, he is alive and has been detained by the police. one of the many threats that law enforcement is now looking at is his online history. which now includes a list, a growing list of anti-jewish posts. president trump spoke to reporters about the shooting a short time ago. let's take a listen. >> they didn't have any protection. they had a maniac walk in. and they didn't have any protection. and that is just so sad to see. so sad to see. the results could have been much better. it is a very, very, it is a very difficult thing, for me to stand as president, to watch any of
this go. >> cnn's nick valencia has been on this story all day. bring us up to speed on the latest. >> reporter: alex, an awful, awful day here in america. here we are yet again talking about another mass shooting, this time in the squirrel hill neighborhood of pittsburgh, pennsylvania. 9:45 is typically when shabbat services start, at the tree of life synagogue. shabbat of course is the busiest day of any synagogue and within 30 minutes at cnn we got our first reports of an active shooter. police raced to the scene, as we understand it, they did engage this alleged gunman, who at this point is believed to have been the only gunman, and here is what we can tell you. at least 12 people were shot according to initial reporting from sources close to our crime and justice reporter shimon prokupecz. at least four people were killed. or the local affiliates are reporting a number that is slightly higher. we did hear at a press conference from from the public safety director at pittsburgh who did not corroborate those deaths only to say six people
injured including four officers. he said three people were in critical condition. at this point, it is being investigated as a hate crime, a federal violation if only because we understand this shooter was saying some anti-semitic remarks while this shooting was going on. which happened, i should say, during a service, while that service was occurring. the past president of the tree of life synagogue, saying an estimated, maybe 90 to 100 people were present in the synagogue at the time of the shooting. this alleged gunman has been identified. he saw a grimace of him on your screen. 46-year-old white male. i don't even want to dig fy him by saying his name but police are nooking into his history, especially his social media media profile and anti-semitic remarks. >> let's talk more about the social media history. one of the targets in his post is a jewish refugee agency. what do we know about what he said about them and about jews in those posts? >> an official was on just a little while ago with fed ricka
whitfield and said at least individually he was unaware of this alleged gunman making threats toward the organization. that is very evident from his social media posts, on a form called, a forum called gap.com. he has extensive anti-semitic profile. and all of that will be part of the investigation p. right now it eems the anti-semitism is a motive for the attack but why he targeted this specific synagogue in the squirrel hill neighborhood of pittsburgh, which is a high concentration of the jewish community, why he targeted this synagogue is all part of the investigation. >> and one of his posts listed the shabbat services nearby. nick valencia in atlanta, thank you so much. let's bring in our reporters and experts to break this all down. with us is national security analyst for cnn, juliet. and the cnn crime and justice reporter shimon prokupecz and
just joining us now is josh campbell who used to be of course with the fbi. gentlemen, juliet, thanks for being with us this afternoon. shimon, let's start you with. you have been speaking with law enforcement sources all day. we have gotten his name. we have gotten his age. a photo. what more do we know about the profile of the shooter? >> so we know that as nick was saying, he was, this is clearly a hate crime, there was anti-semitic words that were uttered during the shooting and as police were trying to take him into custody, he was talking about jews and a hatred towards jews so clearly lots of evidence this is all motivated toward hate, hatred towards jus. the fbi now taking the lead, because it is now obviously a hate crime and upping it to a federal hate crime. the u.s. attorney has enough evidence already, they have already drawn up the charges, so we will see the federal criminal complaint filed against him. he is in the hospital, is what local police have said. it is possible because there was an exchange of gunfire and he
may have been injured during. that and a lot of what we know about him comes from his social media postings, obviously, a lot of the anti-jew postings. so look, i think it is fair to say that the police there, the fbi there, know everything they need to know about this, about what the motivation is, and now, there is, you know, going through, trying to see if there is anything that could have prevented this. this is going to be a key part of, i think, the fbi. >> the red flag, always a big question. josh, we understand you have new reporting, new information, what do you have. >> obviously we talk about this troubling, some of these troubling social media posts that we've been looking at and now when law enforcement officials first showed up, we are told they looked at the area around the synagogue, is this a target of opportunity, is this something that was possibly targeted based on the what it is, a house of worship there outside of pittsburgh. the social media posts obviously are now leading officers in a refined direction, so to speak, where it doesn't look like it was just a target of opportunity, but based on some of the anti-semitic things that we have been seeing on social
media, they think that is the prevailing view right now, leading in that direction. again, we don't know at this point what he actually told officers. as shimon mentioned, he was take tonight hospital right after the incident. and then the next step would be to interview him, to gather information and we're not sure if he is being cooperative, if he is providing details. obviously, that could be a potential gold mine for law enforcement officers, if he does indeed talk to them about what he did. one thing i will say lastly, and again, there has been so much going on, this last week, when it comes to violence and obviously we're familiar with the package bombings, that were sent across the country, and the similarities are there in the sense that law enforcement officers try to figure out what is the motivation, and in that case, you had someone who was out there on social media, essentially telling us what he believed. this appears to be another one of those individuals who is not necessarily hiding what his thoughts are, because at least the initial scrub on social media, we see some of the very troubling anti-semitic comments. >> he had a license to carry? >> that's right. we're working on the reporting right now. we are gathering information.
that's one thing they're looking at but that will be an interesting thing that law enforcement officers always look at. what was the method of attack? what did they use. and as we mentioned, were there missed opportunities? how did he actually obtain the firearm that was used during the incident? again, lots of questions remaining. >> we will get a lot more details on that i'm sure in the coming hours. >> julia, let's go to you. we mentioned this is being investigated by the fbi as a hate crime. why would this not be domestic terrorism for example? because the definition from the fbi is that it is perpetrated by individuals or groups inspired or associated with primarily u.s.-based movements that espouse extremist ideologies of a political, religious, social, or environmental nature. and the religious nature of this is quite obvious. why is not terrorism? >> so right now, there is a couple of reasons why they wouldn't argue it is terrorism right now, because terrorism is a crime of motivation, so even though it may seem obvious to us, right now, because we're looking at social media, we just want to wait.
so prosecutors can always up the charges, in terms of terrorism, but it is clearly a hate crime, because the hate crime has to do with the target. in this case, of course, a religious ceremony at an orthodox jewish synagogue. just to put this in perspective as a nonjew, married to someone who is jewish and raising three jewish kid, the naming ceremony is the most intimate and joyful of ceremonies that you can imagine in the faith. it is crowded with lots of kids. explaining the jewish name, as well as the american or english name if there is one. and so the horror of this is amplified. it is much like one can imagine going into a wedding. this is the similarity. a couple of other things about what we know right now. this web site that a lot of people don't know about, gab, i'm in communication with gab right now, gab has taken his postings offline and has offered them to the fbi and investigators. what we don't know is whether anything was done with his, in terms of action, by gab, to
either bring down his site, notify authorities or notify the potential targets. we heard in the last hour, from frederica's guest, with the image refugee group, that they had not notified that they were the subject of concern, that someone had been essentially targeting them. so while there is a lot going on, but there is anti-semitism of course, name, it and also a sense of anti-immigrant or refugee. that seems to be a line in this right now. so clearly, a hate crime. it can always be ratcheted up at later stages. but right now, of course, it is just to try to get this community back together. >> that platform that you mentioned, not terribly well known to most, i would imagine, i hadn't heard of it until today, and apparently, it has notoriously lax speech rules. but they have come out with a -- >> and notification. >> yes of course, and the notification issue is big. twitter gets into trouble, too, if someone is violent online and
is there an obligation to note if fy -- to notify or bring the site down and we don't know what gab did and it looks like a history of really horrific things put on the web site. >> right. >> all right. back to josh campbell. we have in the past few moments confirmed that bower, the suspect, had an active license, has an active license to carry a firearm. >> we are working with law enforcement to gather information and there is an entire operation behind the scenes that basically vets information that we're getting to make sure it is accurate before we put it out. we can say the subject, this is in fact, being involved in the shooting today, was a licensed firearm, had a licensed permit there in pennsylvania, and we're learning that from some of our law enforcement contacts. he was suspected of purchasing at least six firearms since 1996. six firearms. there are a lot of questions here, we don't know, we don't know a lot about what took place as far as the caliber of the weapon that was used. the details. we don't know if that firearm
that was used in today's incident was purchased legally or where he got it. but we are starting to paint a picture of him as a firearm owner and had six purchases since '96. >> that will be significant for law enforcement, because there is going to be questions about were there signs and when is the last time he purchased a weapon and because the president -- >> and of course what's kind. let's get back to that. president trump has walked out on stage in indianapolis. we will take a listen to what he has to say. he made brief remarks earlier about this shooting. and one would expect that he will again now at the top of his comments. ♪ god bless the usa.
♪ and i'm proud to be an american where at least i know i'm free ♪ and i won't for get the men who died who gave that life to me ♪ and i gladly stand up next to you ♪ still today ♪ because there ain't no doubt i love this land. ♪ god bless the usa . well, i want to thank you. when i hear the word future farmer, that's a very, very important term. you're very smart doing that. future farmer. i hear some people want to go into a business or an industry.
i say i wouldn't want to do that but i would like to be a future farmer. that, i can tell you. but as you know, earlier today, there was a horrific shooting targeting and killing jewish americans at the tree of life synagogue in pittsburgh, pennsylvania. the shooter is in custody. and federal authorities have been dispatched to support state and local police and conduct a full and thorough federal investigation. this wicked act of mass murder is pure evil, hard to believe, and frankly, something that is unimaginable. our nation and the world are shocked and stunned by the grief. this was an anti-semitic act. you wouldn't think this would be
possible in this day and age. but we just don't seem to learn from the past. our minds cannot comprehend the cruel hate and the twisted malice that could cause a person to unleash such terrible violence during a baby naming ceremony. this was a baby naming ceremony. at a sacred house of worship. on the holy day of sabbath. anti-semitism and the widespread persecution of jews represents one of the ugliest and darkest features of human history. the vial hate-filled poison of anti-semitism must be condemned and confronted everywhere and anywhere it appears. there must be no tolerance for anti-semitism in america or for
any form of religious or racial hatred or prejudice. you know that. you know that very well. you know that very well. you're outstanding people. you were brought up incredibly by outstanding parents in most cases. and i just want to thank you for your understanding because today, with one unified voice, we condemn the historic evil of anti-semitism and every other form of evil. and unfortunately, evil comes in many forms. and we come together as one american people. i have just spoken, go ahead. we should, we should.
[ cheers and applause ] >> i have just spoken with the mayor of pittsburgh, bill peduto, terrific guy, and with the governor of pennsylvania, who have i been dealing with quite a bit lately on the hurricanes, and other things, tom wolf, two terrific people, to assure the full and complete resources of my administration in the investigation of this attack. we are praying for the families of the victims and our hearts go out to the wounded law enforcement officers in pittsburgh, very badly wounded, and very brave. the results and the facts will be put out very shortly, but these were very brave officers.
these are incredible people of law enforcement and law enforcement does so much for us. so much for us. they really do. they do so much for us. and they really are unsung heroes. they don't get the credit they deserve. but i have always given them the credit. these are incredible patriots, incredible people. we mourn for the unthinkable loss of life that took place today. and we pledge in their name to fight for a future of justice, safety, tolerance, morality, dignity and love. we must all rise above the hate, move past our divisions, and embrace our common destiny as americans. and it doesn't mean that we can't fight hard and be strong
and say what's on our mind, but we have to always remember those elements. we have to remember the elements of love and dignity and respect and so many others. as we hold pennsylvania and the great people of pennsylvania close in our hearts and prayers, i am glad to be here today in the wonderful state of indiana. we love indiana. and to address some people that are going to be so successful, the future farmers of america. especially, especially -- >> all right, the president there addressing the horrific shooting in pittsburgh at the top of his remarks. he said that all of the federal
assets that the city needs have been dispatched. he called this attack pure evil. said it was hard to believe. and unimaginable. he did call this an anti-semitic act and condemned anti-semitism and other evil in all its forms. he did interestingly confirm that this did happen during a bris, a naming ceremony, on saturday morning at the tree of life synagogue, and he went on to thank law enforcement, which of course has had a very busy week in florida, new york, trying to track down those packages containing bombs sent to high level democratic officials and others and who are now very busy investigating this horrific shooting in pittsburgh. we will take a quick break and we will be back with our guests right after this. making my dreams a reality takes more than just investment advice. from insurance to savings to retirement, it takes someone with experience and knowledge
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the ultimate punishment, you know what the ultimate punishment then, this time, we can't let this happen this time, and if it does happen, they have to pay a very big price and it has to go much quicker. not ten years of legal wrangling. >> the president there in indianapolis, saying that the death penalty, the pace of the death penalty needs to be stepped up, in cases like this. resulting in harsher punishments for shooters who carry out these mass murders. now, we have just confirmed that at least ten people were killed in this morning's shooting. five more injured at that synagogue. the tree of life synagogue in pittsburgh, pennsylvania. the suspect is alive. and in custody at this hour. we have city council woman erika straussburger joining us by phone. council woman, first of all, our deepest condolences from all of us here at cnn, we know that you represent squirrel hill.
what can you tell us about how the community is reacting? >> well, thank you for the condolences. it is obviously an incredibly sad day for the city of pittsburgh and the very tight-knit squirrel hill community that i in part represent. and i can tell you that a set of elected leaders who were gathered near the site today, and participated in a press conference there, along with the other city councilman, corey o'connor who also represents part of squirrel hill, we walked the streets of the downtown district after the event, and after the all clear was given, and it was a ghost town, frankly. and i think people are really hunkering down, spending time with friends and family, and like me, are probably in a state of shock. >> councilwoman, we did confirm through your colleague mr. o'connor's office, that the ten people, that is the death toll, ten people have been killed. what more do you know? >> we are going to be finding out the details at a 4:00 p.m.
press briefing that the fbi will be handling. and the fbi is handling as a hate crime and so that's why the feds are involved at this point. and not much more has been confirmed than what you've already heard about the injuries, the number of people in the synagogue at the time of the shooting, the circumstances, and really anything else. there is an active investigation. so i don't have many more details that i'm able to share about the incident at this point. >> we understand. there is a lot coming out that has not yet been confirmed. but what we do know is that the shooter had a long history of targeting jews online, of spewing ugly vitriol about the jewish community. do you know at all if he was known to local authorities? >> i don't know if he is known to local authorities but i can say i have talked to many people who have attended synagogue, not necessarily that synagogue or another synagogue, and i myself
are a member of our jewish community center where in the past there have been bomb threats and scares, who feel as if they need to turn and look over their shoulder every time they are in a place of worship or the jcc, which is obviously a sad statement, a statement of the times we live in. so although, you know, i don't think anyone was expecting this at all, obviously, it is an horrific event and many of us i think are still in a state of shock, comprehending the stale and the horrific nature of this. i don't think it came as much as a supply surprise, sadly as it might have, otherwise. >> squirrel hill, of course, is a famously historic jewish community. the tree of life synagogue is a conservative synagogue. what could you tell us about the types of people who would have been there on a saturday morning? we now understand that it was
for a bris. >> well, we also don't have confirmation of exactly what types of activities were happening, but we heard certainly a bris, a school for children, regular saturday morning services, so people from all walks of life, maybe not just from the squirrel hill community but from elsewhere, attending, as they normally would, on a saturday morning. it is an incredibly, incredibly -- sad is not enough of a word to describe this type of event. it is shocking. it is horrific. and it is incredibly sad. >> erika straussburger, councilwoman for that area of pittsburgh, again, we are so sorry and can't begin to imagine what you and the community are going through. our thoughts are certainly with you. thank you for joining us. all right, we are going to take another quick break. and on the other side, we will be live on the scene in squirrel hill, in pittsburgh. geico has over 75 years
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a book that you're ready to share with the world? get published now, call for your free publisher kit today! breaking news this afternoon, ten people killed inside a mass shooting inside a pittsburgh synagogue on saturday morning. police are identified the suspected shoot are, robert bower, 46 years old. law enforcement sources have told cnn that the suspect had made anti-jewish comments during the deadly rampage. four police officers were injured before taking the suspected shooter into custody. here is what pennsylvania's governor tom wolf had to say. >> this is an incredibly sad day for all of us.
and we have some things that people want to report on, but i just want to say on behalf of everybody, in pennsylvania, these were our neighbors. these are fellow pennsylvaniians. and this is an incredibly sad day. i want to thank the first responders for doing what they have done to make us safe. and to respond so quickly, so effectively, to this tragedy. >> incredibly sad day. i want to go to cnn's sonya mogi in pittsburgh. she has just arrived on the scene. we understand there is still a perimeter around the synagogue. what are you seeing on the ground? >> reporter: that's right, alex this is as far as they will allow us to go. we're seeing multiple emergency vehicles near the entrance to that synagogue. i spoke to neighbors who were clearly in shock right now, many of them are sitting in their homes, texting each other, trying to find out if they knew anyone who might have been killed as you saw that number, it has now gone up to ten.
and one woman i spoke to said whether or not you're a part of this synagogue, or any of the congregations inside of it, she knew that, you know, people are going to know many of the people who have been affected. this woman told me that when the shooting happened, she was at the grocery store, shopping this morning, and she got a call from a little girl whose friends with her daughter who lives just across the street and she told me that little girl called her asking if she could come to their home because she heard there is a shooting happening. that mother understandably abandoned her shopping cart, ran home, went to go grab that young girl across the street and when she did, she heard gunshots, brought that girl to her own home, with her daughter where she sheltered in place for safety. and you know, now, the scene here is secure. it is clear that that woman says she and other neighbors for so long were not sure if it was and they are focusing finding out what to do how they can help and
they will put together a memorial tonight, a vigil, it doesn't matter your faith, they are welcome to come, and this is something that devastated this community, which is a well to do part of pittsburgh. predominantly jewish area. historically jewish area. and the synagogue itself is made up of multiple congregations inside. some of them more traditional. some of them reconstructionists. some progressive. so many different types of people practicing different interpretations of the faith, under that roof. and neighbors here are devastated. >> that is a very good point. this was a synagogue, we understand, with not just different strains of jewish worshippers but also different rooms and so we're still trying to get a a sense of how this all under folded. i did note that there is a perimeter there, and we've also seen the pictures of heavy law enforcement presence. can you tell us if the people that you have spoken with, or are the people in squirrel hill allowed to move around. are they still on lockdown?
>> absolutely. they are walking around, we're seeing neighbors walking down the street behind me. and you know, law enforcement is trying to update the media. they have a really difficult job on their hands right now. they are trying to both investigate, keep this area secure, maintain that crime scene and to let people know what is going on, so many people have a vested interest in this, you know, from the white house, across the country, and even across the world, we've seen outpourings of support and grief over this. so people want to know what is going on. they are setting up an emergency operations center nearby to brief the media. so we will be hearing more from authorities in the 4:00 hour. fbi is obviously leading the investigation. so they will be there and updating with more details on what happened and what they know. >> that's right. not just local law enforcement, we should note this is being led by the fbi, as you noted, atf has also been involved, sonya mogi, on the ground in squirrel hill, we know you will stay on top of this. thanks for joining us. we will check in with you in
just a little bit. the pittsburgh community understandably shock and reeling from this mass shooting at the tree of life synagogue. this as sonya was just saying, is a quiet close-knit community. community leaders as we have been hearing are still coming to terms, trying to cope with this tragedy. take a listen. >> we've had a tragedy here today. the work of the first responders is probably prevented it from becoming much more tragedy than what it is. the scene is very bad. it is a very horrific crime scene. it is one of the worst that i've seen. and i've been on some plane crashes. it is very bad. >> this is shocking. these are our friends. these are our neighbors. and when this list of victims comes out, it is going to be people that we know. so i think you've got the mayor who lives right here, senator costa, we all grew up here, representative frankel. and you can see the outpouring of the governor coming here
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the presence of a few evil people among us does not define this country. we are blessed to live in the greatest country on earth. and for that, we thank you you, amen. >> rabbi, speaking there, at the president's event in indianapolis. the president, just before that, had called this an anti-semitic attack in pittsburgh that we now know has left ten people dead inside the tree of life synagogue in the squirrel hill neighborhood of pittsburgh. now, there's a lot of reaction coming out of israel. we know that many in the community in squirrel hill had close ties with israel. law enforcement sources have told cnn that the suspected shooter, robert bowers, made anti-jewish comments during the deadly rampage, as he gunned down now at least ten people, and others who are still
wounded. here is what israel's prime minister benjamin netanyahu had to say in response. >> i was heart broken and appalled by the murder ous attack on a pittsburgh synagogue today. the entire people of israel grieve with the families of the dead. we stand together with the jewish community of pittsburgh, we stand together with the american people, in the face of this horrendous anti-semitic brutality. and we all pray for the speedy recovery of the wounded. >> joining me now is cnn's correspondent in jerusalem, oren liebermann. as i mentioned, many of in this community had close ties to israel. i was listening to someone who had just gotten back from there. how are people in israel reacting to this tragedy? >> reporter: alex, especially at times like this, after a shooting attack like this at a synagogue, those ties are stronger than ever and there will always be that connection between jews living overseas
whether in suru.s., south ameri europe, and wells, it is put on display. and let me put this in context of the weekend here. it was already a tense weekend, with a sharp escalation between israel and gaza. alex, you have reported here, you know the feeling that the pressure it puts on the leaders here. it was the end of the sabbath, the end of what was supposed to be a day of rest, when news of the shooting reached israel here, and that's when israeli leaders found out. it was moments after the sabbath ended. just a short while after the attack that prime minister benjamin netanyahu put out the statement you heard there. and we have heard so many statements like that, from not only israel politicians and israeli officials but also jewish community leaders, some of whom live her or traveling here from the u.s. because of that bond you had mentioned. allow me to read you a statement from israel's president, ruben ridland, he was one of the first to put out a statement, he said, we are thinking of ourselves brothers and sisters, the whole house of israel in this time of trouble, as we say in the morning prayers, we are thinking
of the families of those who were murdered and praying for the quick recovero of those who were injured. i'm sure the law enforcement agencies and the legal authorities in the u.s. will investigate the event thoroughly and justice will be served on this despicable murder. we heard that from many leaders here, as they try to cross the bridge and try to help the pittsburgh community as well as the larger jewish american community as it tries to cope with this and as it tries to recover from. >> this the minister of education, the minister of diaspora affairs is already on his way to pittsburgh to see what he can do, and what else the community can do and that is an outreach effort we expect to see grow here in the coming days here. alex? >> i was struck by a quote from jeff finklestein, the ceo of the greater jewish federation of pittsburgh and everyone thinks of israel in situations like this and i took to mean that many in the jewish communities here think about going to israel, for security reasons, that's something that we have seen, also happen in europe, which is very distressing, and
very sad, if that's what this has come to. oren liebermann in jerusalem, thanks very much. all right, much more on our breaking news is coming up. what the suspected gunman's social media pages are now revealing. we've got new images just into cnn. stay with us. blam bla (avo) life doesn't give you many second chances. but a subaru can. you guys ok? you alright? wow. (avo) eyesight with pre-collision braking. standard on the subaru ascent. presenting the all-new three-row subaru ascent. love is now bigger than ever. you don't see psoriasis. you see clear skin. you see me. but if you saw me before cosentyx... ♪ i was covered. it was awful. but i didn't give up.
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a book that you're ready to share with the world? get published now, call for your free publisher kit today! . >> just into cnn, these are images that the shooter posted on social media portal gap. they show bower's handgun collection, at least part of it, and photos of shooting targets. now, cnn is also learning from a law enforcement official that bowers had made anti-jewish comments during the shooting this morning. bower has also targeted jews on-line and posted "i'm going n in" shortly before the shooting. official saz this is being considered a hate kram and is being investigated as such, and
the fbi is now in charge of the investigation. joining me again are cnn's law enforcement analyst josh campbell and cnn crime justice reporter. josh, first to you. these new pictures, of course, you know, plenty of people have guns. >> we're digging into the shooter's past, as law enforcement is right now, looking at social media. again, when you think about social media, at least information that's publicly available, this is something that people want the public to know. oids, they would be protected and locked down, you know, in the privacy settings. obviously, this person was a gun enthusiast, as evidenced by some of the images that i'm not sure if we have them on the screen there, but you have, you know, several handguns and target practice here. he is actually talking about -- his glock family. it looks like this is a community within the social media platform, guns of gab is
what it's called. i would say this isn't even necessarily troubling. look at this. this is the writings of a gun enthusias enthusiast, but i think it does tell us that he did have some familiarity with weapons and actually knew how to manipulate them, as evidenced by the targets that he showed. >> correct. shimon, to you. we have the audio. we're getting it ready. it's from the scanner. >> just exactly what they were dealing with, yes, they described that the shooter had a high-powered ak they found a
magazine, and they thought maybe that's the kind of weapon he was using where, they described what he looked like. light blue shirt, jeans. >> this is a live active shooter, and in the middle of that they are rescuing and removing people who have been shot and victims in this really awful, awful situation. >> incredibly chilling. when the president talks about the heroism of law enforcement, this is exactly what we're dealing with. we're going to brian levin, the director of the study of hate
and extremism. first, you study these hate crimes, these types of attacks. when you heard the news, what was your reaction? >> we've been girding for these kind of horrible things. post-charlottesville what we've seen is a fragmentation and splintering of not only the leadership of the organization of these far right anti-semitic groups. going into charlottesville and just after we saw more mega-rallies, large rallies by white nationalists and neo-nazis and those two and a half years than the previous ten to 20. here's what the danger is. november 2016 was the worst month for a hate crime. that's election month that we've seen in 14ers years, and the day after election day there was an anti-muslim bomb plot, and the most hate crimes in over a decade, since 2003.
this fragmentation that's been going on in this far right world has taken place as they've gotten traction with main stream politics and what we've been saying for some time is that we fear actions from loners who are these loose cherries that have either fallen off these groups or who are fellow travellers on social media. he has been on gab. it's pretty clear what his motive appears to be. >> right. you said it very quickly there, but i want to highlight that figure. 57% uptick in anti-semitic attacks, and that was last year in 2017. >> they show that jews are in
the top three in nearly every one of them, and number one in new york city. also, i think it was noteworthy that president trump went to indiana and indianapolis to talk about anti-semitism, but that state just refused to add a hate crime log to its statutes, one of five that have no hate crime law. we're very concerned about this uptick in political violence, and one of the things that we've seen is sometimes but not always state political leaders, like the president, also correlate to significant spikes in hate crime, particularly when it comes around a catalytic incident like a terror attack. >> thank you so much for your expertise and for joining us. >> thank you, alex. >> all right. >> this is cnn breaking news.
a synagogue in pittsburgh shooting is being investigated as a hate crime. we're expecting the police will update the public on the tragic events this morning in pittsburgh. here in the meantime is what we do know where, that ten people were killed. six others were injured, including among them, four police officers. the gunman is in custody and wounded and made anti-jewish remarks, comments during the shooting. he has been identified. he is 46-year-old robert bowers. cnn has learned that he frequently targeted jews on social media. particularly on a platform called gab, posting just today can't sit by and watch my people get slaughtered. screw your optics. i'm going in. president trump has reacted to this shooting just moments ago. >> with one unified voice we condemn