investigation with a former top official, of the fbi also, the former secretary of homeland security, all standing by. you'll also hear survivors of the floodyfloody -- bloody shoo tell us of the panic and cape ys as the shooter aimed his weapon at them. we want to welcome our viewers in the united states and around the world. i'm wolf blitzer in washington. you are watching a special "situation room." >> announcer: this is cnn breaking news. >> let's get to the breaking news, mayor vincent gray says officials still, still are looking for a potential second suspect in the mass shooting here at the washington navy yard. it is not clear if that person was actually involved. all very murky right now. police are asking people in this area to stay indoors. while the search continues. authorities say 12 people were killed. when at least one gunman opened
fire in the naval facility earlier in the day. the shooter is dead. he has been identified as 34-year-old aaron alexis of texas. just a little while ageshgs the navy secretary, ray mavis told me alexis was a civilian it contractor with the u.s. navy. authorities say they do not have the motive. they don't know what led to this mass shooting. here at the navy yard. let's bring in justice reporter, evan paris, doing reporting on what is going on. first the suspect, 34-year-old alexis, what do we know about him? any criminal record? >> we know that, there have been previous incidents. as happens in the scenes. now the fbi is going to go back and look at every one of those incidents and determine if there is something there that, perhaps, you know indicated something more that could have led to this today. we know of a 2010 arrest in ft.
worth, for instance, in which a neighbor reported that someone shot through the floor of her apartment. the police went there and talked to him. he was very calm. apparent low ly he simply said s cleaning his gun in the apartment. it went through the floor of the apartment above. he was arrested for discharge of his weapon. that is one of the incidents. right now, fbi agents who are working the scene are trying to figure out if there is something else there that could indicate what, what, could have happened here today. >> what are you hearing abut a possible second suspect who may still be at large? that is something the captain, police chief kathy lanier mentioned this morning. there are no indications there is a second shooter. they're looking to speak to some one else, a second person at the
scene. and another person reported this morning. talked to the person. determined the person had nothing to do with this. in the cape yhaos of the scene normal to have reports like that. in a scene where you have armed military people in camouflage and in, fatigues who, might be running around, the scene. >> yeah, and the fbi is the lead investigative agency right now. >> correct. exact low. >> though the military is involved. washington, d.c. metropolitan police are all involved. the fbi its leading the scene. >> on a federal piece of federal property. evan, thanks very much. shots first rang out early this morning. brian todd has been covering the breaking news for all of us. all day. here is brian's report. [ sirens blaring ] >> reporter: first frantic calls to police came in after 8:15 a.m., shots fired several injured at the u.s. navy yard.
>> i heard three shots. pow, pow, pow. 30 second later, i heard four more shots. and a couple -- they knew they were shot. and started panicking. >> i know i lost a friend. i worked in the pentagon years ago with the i belief to be one of the fatalities. >> came around the corner. aimed the gun. fired two or three shots. >> reporter: 3,000 people work at the facility miles from the white house and capital. >> thee was far enough down the hall, we couldn't seep his face. we could see him with the rifle. he aimed, raised it, and hit high on the wall. >> security was tightened around the capitol. schools nearby locked down. reagan national airport grounded all air traffic. 9:56, president obama is briefed by homeland security and counterterrorism team. eyewitnesses like commander tim juris told horrific tales. juris was talking to a man shot in front of him. he walked up and told me he heard there was a shooteren our
buildiour -- shooter in our building. we were standing having a conversation. we heard two gunshots. he went down. i ran. it had to be a semiautomatic. they're talking about -- gunshots that they heard in rapid succession. >> reporter: washington, d.c. police chief recounted gripping details of the police response. >> within two to three minutes. metropolitan police officers were on the scene. internal security had engaged. identified the suspect we had victims down. within seven minutes we had active shooter teams inside the building moving through the building. there was multiple engagements with the suspect that was eventually deceased. >> reporter: d.c.'s mayor does not think the shootings are tied to terrorism. police still don't have a motive. >> brian todd joining us here. not far away from the navy yard. right behind us. do we know how this individual actually got into the -- facility, this navy yard. >> wolf, that's what they're
investigating. police and fbi saying that's something they're looking into. right now. we pressed them on that. this news conference. previous ones. they don't know at laes they're not saying right now. not able to say exactly how he got in there. we have been told by officials. this its a secure facility. you can't get in without a special clearance or pass. how he exactly got in, that is subject of the investigation. >> we don't know right now whether he walked in tlhrough a gate or drove in in a vehicle. could have had weapons. >> we don't know if heave gve ga vehicle. you have how to have a sticker or clearance to get on the base y have to have a military id. these are all things they're trying to figuree oo figure out. we have not heard of a vehicle. not something, subject to and the authorities have said throughout the day. whether this man had a vehicle.
they that's something. of a possible second suspect. they don't know who it is. lacking f lacking for a second man in his 50s. wearing olive drab clothing. they're lacking for help finding that man as well. they're trying to clear one of the buildings. an all day job. going on 10-plus hours. since the shooting. >> spoken to people at the navy yash yard. if you are cleared. drive your vehicle on there. drive your vehicle. you may have something in a trunk. who knows whether this individual walked in or drove in. an important part of the investigation. >> thank you very much. the massacre raising new questions, very serious new question as but security right here in the nation's capital. we will talk to a panel of experts including the former homeland security secretary, michael chertoff: umming. sfx: birds chirping
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>> just got the picture from the white house. the president of the united states being briefed on the mass shooting here at the washington navy yard. there you see the president in the oval office, lisa monaco, the assistant to the president for homeland security and counterterrorism. the president clearly like all of us very, very worried. very disturbed. upset about this massacre. the only word you can really use to hear what happened here earlier today. much more of our special coverage right after this. over 20 million drivers are insured with geico. so get a free rate quote today. i love it! how much do you love it? animation is hot...and i think it makes geico's 20 million drivers message very compelling, very compelling. this is some really strong stuff! so you turned me into a cartoon...lovely. geico. fifteen minutes could save you fifteen percent or more on car insurance.
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plus, you could save hundreds when you switch, up to $423. call... today. liberty mutual insurance -- responsibility. what's your policy? >> welcome back to our continuing coverage here in the situation room. this mass shooting, this massacre that occurred here at the washington navy yard. just behind me, 12 people shot and killed. another 12 people injured. shot and injured. they're recovering. they're being treated at local d.c. hospitals. the suspect in this case, shot and killed as well. the simple fablgt thct that tod shooting happen at washington's navy yard. sets up the potential for conflict and confusion among so many of the different
investigators. it woulden clupd the mi einclud fbi, d.c. police force. among others. they all knead how to work together. certainly elt would be awful if they worked independently. let's talk about the challenges, in the investigation. joining us michael chertoff, served as secretary of homeland security, he is chairman of the chertoff group, a global security firm. and maryellen o'toole, a former fbi special agent and senior pro timer. cnn law enforcement analyst, tomful. -- tom fuentes. michael chertoff, coordinating the investigation. you've speak as former secretary of homeland security will not be given easy given all the various agencies involved though the fbi is the lead agency. take us a little bit behind the scenes, how this will unfold?
>> you are right, wolf, it is challenging. the good news, the law enforcement agencies in the district of columbia and surrounding regions actually have a lot of experience working together on investigations. back -- in the day of the sniper, for example, which was in 2001, two snipers, we had very good coordination between the bureau which had the lead, and then, the county prosecutors and county detectives that were investigating the individual shootings. so there is a lot of experience here. what also helps a little bit. it took place on a federal premesis. the federal government has control over the domain. not a question where you will have a lot of civilians coming in and out. i think that will aid the investigation as well. >> mary ellen o'toole, you are a former fbi special agent. a senior profiler. tell us if you were called in right now, to get involved and investigate. what would you be doing as a
senior profiler? >> one of the first things i would want to find out mr. about the shooter's background. about the warning behaviors we know exist in these kind of cases. i would want to find out about the preparation. these cases are not impulsive. there is a lot of planning that goes night. i would be going back to look at, at the background. and how this evolved over a, probably a fairly long period of time. off awe rig >> right now we have no idea what if any mow tich ttive the may have had. >> in these cases, cases and the need for retaliation and revenge. these are thrill seeker. these are people that want ape lot of attention. he basically stopped the world right now. all the focus has been on him today. as awful as the that sounds, those are some of the motives we seen other cases. >> we also stopped himself. he its dead right now. tom fuentes. if you were involved in this investigation. i know you would be going through all the videotape.
all the closed circuit tv cams that may have been watching what was going on. taking a look at forensic evidence, the weapons, the bullets all of that. walk us through what you would be doing. >> i think, wolf, what mary ellen send is key to the case. what was he thinking? what were his motivation to do something like this? very critical is to try to locate his mobile phone records, his e-mail record, text messages, talk to colleagues, co-workers, family, friends. and find out -- what if anything he has said in recent times about his mental condition. or his attitude about the u.s. government, the navy in particular. is he looking for that, for revenge or tension, attention, 15 minutes of fame. or is he mentally unstable. and just snapped. and this caused that high level contacts that high have just spoken with in the last 30 minutes. indicate so far the
investigators, it is a mystery they have not determined or come across any evidence of radicalization, or disgruntled employees, or place of violence. that type of motive yet. doesn't mean they went find it. so far there has been no indication so. you are very, very much could have -- the mentally unstable individual committing this act for many of the reasons mary ellen just mentioned. >> tom, everyone stand by. we are going to continue our breaking news coverage. we are also going to hear from a woman, terrified about the fate of her husband. she says, he worked on the floor where the navy shooting happened. more of our special report and dramatic eyewitness accounts that's coming up. what's your function? ♪ ♪ hooking up the country helping business run ♪ ♪ build! we're investing big to keep our country in the lead. ♪ load! we keep moving to deliver what you need. and that means growth, lots of cargo going all around the globe. cars and parts, fuel and steel,
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what began as a normal back to work monday here in washington, d.c. suddenly turned into confusion, panic and chaos. we've spent all day listening to stories of how people escaped the scene of the massacre. these stories are so powerful and so true. >> reporter: absolutely, wolf. and not only do you hear the stories, but then you have the other side of this, which is family members that simply feel helpless because they've seen the images. they've heard the news, and they want nothing more than to know that their family member is
okay. i'm standing receipt outside national stadium. we have seen buses dropping off people who were on the campus during the shooting. when they get here, they're met by family members or they make their way home to the metro. we've been out here since early this morning. that's a lot of time to see family members come here, very frantic, wanting to know for sure that their family member's okay. take a listen. >> you don't know who's in there further and w hurt and who isn't, and who's on his floor. >> reporter: and you're trying to find him now? >> yes, i'm trying to get into parking lot b because i don't know if he's in there or not. >> reporter: that was hours ago. this woman, as you can see, she was in tears. she was feeling a lot of anxiety
because her husband worked in the building where the shooting happened. she knew he was okay. but seeing is believing. so she wasn't going to feel settled until she was able to wrap her arms around him. and then fast forward about seven hours later. then came the reunion and perhaps a sigh of relief. we were here for that reunion. take a listen. i saw the anxiety on your face >> that he's okay. and that he will not have any aftereffect from this. and that life will resume a normal pace, normal stride. it's scary. >> reporter: are you okay? >> well, being that there's at least one person that i understand those of us that enter the building every day knew was apparently injured, it's, it's a matter of concern, a place that you know every day and that you're very familiar with the people. it's shocking.
>> reporter: all right. well many of these people that you saw there, they were on lockdown for maybe eight hours or so. there was one woman who got off of the bus, and she said it like this, and she put it in perspective. she said we all came to work on a monday not expecting any of this to happen. to put it in one word, she says it was hell. wolf? >> it certainly was. and for a lot of people it remains hell indeed. renee, thank you. shots rang out, police swarmed the washington navy yard. it's been a dramatic and scary day right here in the nation's capitol. stand by for the powerful images when our special report continues. crowd. ♪ [ male announcer ] the parking lot helps by letting us know who's coming. the carts keep everyone on the right track. the power tools introduce themselves. all the bits and bulbs keep themselves stocked. and the doors even handle the checkout
american flags will fly at half staff here in washington d.c. until friday in memory of the people killed at the horrific shooting at the naefl yard. watch this. >> as he came around the corner, he aimed his gun at us and fired at least two or three shots. >> he was far enough down the hall that we couldn't see his face, but we could see him with a rifle and he raised and aimed and fired and hit high on the wall just as we were trying to leave. >> just standing here, maybe three feet away having a conversation. then we heard two more gunshots. and he went down. that's when i ran. >> just gunshots. multiple gunshots.
and one yelled gun, and we ran. everybody ran. >> everyone said this is no drill. go. go. go. go. emergency exits now. g go -- and we heard several more shots. >> she heard gunfire? >> she saw the guy shooting one of her co-workers. >> we didn't know which direction to go into. i'm getting out of here. i'm running. they were trying to keep us in the cafeteria. i said no. i'm running. all i could think about was my family. >> and once again, a massacre. a massacre happened here in washington, d.c. earlier today. 12 people killed. another dozen injured. some critically. they're being dealt with in local dc hospitals. the shooter also dead. we're going to continue our non-stop coverage here on cnn.
i'll be back tomorrow with much more of the coverage. you can always follow us, what's going on in the situation room on twitter. tweet the show @cnn. erin burnett out front starts right now. good evening, everyone. i'm erin burnett. out front tornado. a deadly shooting rampage in washington, d.c. at this moment we are learning more about the gunman. and police have not ruled out the possibility of a second shooter at large tonight. here is what we know at this instant. 12 people were massacred today. one of the suspected shooters also dead. about a dozen others are wounded. we have a special report on what we know