tv CNN Newsroom With Fredricka Whitfield CNN August 10, 2019 11:00am-12:00pm PDT
♪ >> announcer: this is cnn breaking news. >> hello, again. thank you so much for being with me this saturday. our breaking news, jeffrey epstein, the multimillionaire and accused sex trafficker is dead. cnn has learned that the 66-year-old was discovered in his jail cell early this morning. no foul play is suspected at this time. u.s. attorney general william barr says the death raises serious questions. epstein was in cardiac arrest when he was taken to the hospital and was later pronounced dead. he was being held on multiple federal charges all of which he pled not guilty to in july. the indictment accused him of soliciting sex from girls as young as 14 years old and he would have served up to 45 years
behind bars. polo sandoval is on the scene for us. what's the latest on his death? >> outside of the correctional center, it is business as usual, but inside the questions are certainly mounting. it's been confirmed -- taken to a nearby hospital where he was pronounced dead. sources telling us that he took his own life. investigators tasked with trying to find out exactly how that happened. i can tell you at this point that the bureau of prison is confirming that he was found in his cell in the special housing unit. if you remember about two weeks ago, you recall that he was placed under suicide watch. not long after he was discovered in his cell with some -- with some injuries to his neck. he had claim that he was assaulted and that he was called
multiple things by some of his fellow inmates. however, authorities never confirmed whether or not those injuries were the result of some self-inflicted injuries or if they in fact were related to an assault. that will be key here. i can tell you that based on the current guidance that was issued by the bureau of prisons, they state that any inmate that's exhibiting any significant potential for suicide must be removed from that essential housing unit and be placed in a suicide prevention room. that could mean that prison officials determined he was no longer a risk to himself, so he would have removed from suicide watch or protocols weren't followed. that is what the fbi is tasked with answering. and, again, those are two possible outcomes and also when
you look at the guidelines that they are supposed to be following, fred. >> all right. keep us posted. i appreciate it. there's an investigation into epstein's death and how this could have happened particularly after a report of a possible suicide attempt just weeks ago. our kara scannell is with us right now with more on what the u.s. attorney and what he is pledging to do now. >> before we get to what ag barr has said, we have some new reporting right now that the u.s. attorney's u.s. for the southern district of new york, which is the office that brought the charges against jeffrey epstein, a source familiar with that investigation tells me that that investigation is going to continue. the investigation into jeffrey epstein's conduct of this sex trafficking operation will continue even after his death. now, the charges against epstein
themselves will be dropped because you can't follow-up a criminal investigation with someone who's dead. but they will continue to investigate the whole conduct of jeffrey epstein, who was involved in that conduct and how that might play out. that's new information that we have with a source familiar with the investigation. but ag barr is livid and he has issued a statement saying that there's going to be not just the fbi investigation, but also an investigation by the inspector general. he said mr. epstein's death raises serious questions that must be answered. in addition to the fbi's investigation, i have consulted with the inspector general who is opening an investigation into the circumstances of mr. epstein's death. anyone who has been charged with child predatory behavior or sex trafficking offer is a marked man in prison. and rod rosenstein has also commented publicly, he's been tweeting about the danger that someone in that situation poses and the enhanced risk of
suicide. rosenstein said that pet filfed facing criminal charges are at high risk for suicide. stopping people from harming themselves is difficult. now we are also hearing from some of the accusers, lawyers for some of the alleged victims. also several others calling for additional information, calling for other victims to come forward. brad edwards, an attorney in florida, has also issued a statement today and in that statement, he says, the fact that jeffrey epstein was able to commit the selfish act of taking his own life as his world of abuse unravelled is unfortunate yet predictable. while we engaug-- victims deser
see epstein held accountable. we will tonight to represent his victims and will not stop in the pursuit of justice. it is never too late to come forward with information. in fact many co-conspirators who may have been fearful to speak out against him have been relieved of that accuse. more people who have been afraid, have been intimidated by epstein should come forward, that they can pursue civil settlements with him. and they're still going to investigate the conduct that jeffrey epstein was involved in. fred? >> kara scannell, thank you so much for that. still ahead, heart ache in el paso, texas. today people hit the streets marching to make a change.
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>> i'm a gun violence survivor. about three years ago, my 14-year-old son was shot and killed by another child playing with an unsecure firearm. we learn how to set our dinner table differently. we went from a family of four to an instant family of three. no time to prep or prepare. senator sanders, if elected president of the united states, how will you prioritize gun safety in your administration? >> well, let me begin by thanking you for the work that you're doing and thank everybody for your efforts in taking on one of the most dangerous and powerful political organizations in this country and that is the nra. i have spent my political life taking on corporate entities who
are more concerned about their own power and their own wealth and their own profits than they are about the needs of the american people and that is certainly the case with regard to the nra. so i think the first point to be made, it's a good point, is that over the years because of organizations like yours and maybe even more tragically because of the terrible events that we have seen year after year, week after week, not just in dayton or el paso, california, but in schools all over this country where people have seen and witnessed things that are so unspeakable that it is difficult to talk about them. and when we talk about the epidemic of gun violence in this country, obviously our hearts go out to you and the thousands of other families that have been impacted. but i'll tell you something else
that we don't talk enough about. i've got seven grandchildren and my grandchildren tell me that when they are in schools, they go into drills in order to protect themselves from some murderer who might come into that school and shoot it up. when i was a kid and when many of you were kids, schools were places to learn, places to socialize, places to have a good time. sometimes not to have a good time. but they were places that were safe. no mother in america ever had a doubt that when she sent her kid to school that some terrible thing might happen. so the trauma -- i will not forget this. a couple of months ago, i was here in iowa and we did a town meeting and a guy stood up, must have been 6'2", maybe a football player, big guy, and he talks about the fear that exists in his own school, about what might
happen. obviously the first thing we have to do is do what the american people want us to do and there's a lot that they want to do. and you all know what it is. it is expanding and making certain that we have universal background checks. people in america who should not own guns based on their history will not own guns under a sanders' administration. we end the gun show loophole. what's the sense of having a background check if you can avoid it. we end the strawman provision. we're going to end that as well. what we are also going to do and i have been on this issue and i come from a very rural state, a state which literally had no gun control legislation until last year. but what i have believed for
over 30 years is that assault weapons are military-style weapons designed for one purpose, and that is to kill as many human beings as you can in a shorter period of time. and we have seen over and over again in las vegas and elsewhere, in el paso, dayton, we have seen what these weapons can do. i believed for 30 years and will implement as president of the united states the sale and distribution of assault weapons in this country. [ applause ] >> and on top of that, we need a lot of work to think this one through. many of you know that prior to 1986 it was legal to own a machine gun in this country, machine guns which are the quickest way to kill people with a gun. 1986 under ronald reagan machine guns were licensed and the --
>> you're listening to bernie sanders there in iowa roll out what he envisions if president. we're joined now from des moines where that forum is taking place. he talked about ending the distribution of assault weapons if he were president and expanding background checks to name a few. >> yeah, fred, and you've had many of the democratic presidential candidates, 16 in total, who are in person here today laying out their vision for how they would try to combat this issue of gun violence in this country. bernie sanders talked about the need to stand up and fight against the nra. a short while ago we heard from elizabeth warren who was rolling out her plan which sets a goal of reducing gun deaths in this country by about 80%.
and former vice president joe biden was also on stage talking about gun violence and grief in very personal terms as he talked about his own connection with grief relating to his family and he talked about his work, not just as a senator when he helped to pass assault weapons ban, but also his work as vice president when after that massacre at sandy hook when he was working, trying to come up with some solutions to try to stem gun violence. and take a listen to what he had to tell the attendees at this forum just a short while ago. >> what i'm going today if i'm your -- if you choose me to be your president is take what you have turned from a cause into a movement. things have changed. they've changed fundamentally. because we're not only any longer just talking about the major things that have to be done relating to dealing with gun violence in america. we have to start to educate the american public.
that's what we're doing. >> reporter: now biden also talked about the victims of gun violence and families who lost loved ones in school shootings. but also the impact it's had on police officers who have had to deal with these school shootings and these children who have died. we're going to be hearing from a few more candidates including senator kamala harris as we've seen gun control become a focal point in the 2020 race. fred? >> thank you so much. appreciate it. let's talk more about all of this. joining me right now is a "time" magazine contributor and white house reporter for "the washington post." good to see you both. okay, so you have some democratic candidates who are, you know, placing blame on the president, even going as far as calling him a white supremacist.
take a look at how many are attributing that to him. the president says he doesn't like hearing those labels. do you believe, however, that the president will in any way change the way -- or the jargon he uses in his re-election campaign? >> unfortunately, fred, no, i don't think that people are going to see donald trump change his rhetoric at all. he doesn't really have the ability i think to self-edit. even when he tries to sort of stay on message, that only lasts a limited amount of time. the difference between teleprompter trump and twitter trump, the teleprompter trump is short-lived, and then he goes back to twitter trump, these are my opinions and this is the way i'm going to give it to you. i don't believe in political correctness kind of trump who he
feels will win him the presidency in 2020. >> here are those candidates that i spoke of who are willing to call the president a white supremacist or blame some of his rhetoric on setting the done, giving allowances, if you will. the president yesterday, you know, said that he doesn't like those labels and at the same time he promised on gun control that there would be meaningful background checks that he will be a proponent of. does he have that kind of political capital to make that happen? >> the president says that republicans who are spectacle of the nra which is gearing up for a battle will all come along. he was popularity across the country among republicans and if you talk to democrats, republicans on capitol hill, folks in the white house, almost everyone agrees that the only way anything happens is the president makes it happen. in the past, a president has said after parkland, other
shootings that he wanted more extensive background checks, we moved on and you have five weeks before the signal would return. so it remains to be seen whether the president's current iteration of saying that he's going to support stronger background checks and he's going to force others to come along continues or not. five weeks is an eternity in politics, particularly in the trump white house. but the president right now seems very determined to do it. so we'll have to see. >> and this democratic candidates are not, you know, just in some cases placing blame on the president, but they're saying these railers have some responsibility as well. here's kamala harris. >> on the issue of walmart, yeah, they should stop selling guns. it's just -- there is -- we need background checks, let's start with that. we need background checks and we need people to be, as i've said, responsible in a way that they
are selling them. it's not about everyone needs to stop selling guns, but we need to have checks and balances on it and part of that is we need background checks. that's where i begin and end. >> some people, you know, put some pressure on dick's sporting goods, a while back and there are some democrats who are saying, walmart needs to make some changes. is this somebody that will appeal to voters? >> i think walmart, the question for walmart is, is it going to get them more or less going to make this change. if there's enough public pressure that says, maybe you shouldn't sell certain kinds of guns, maybe you shouldn't sell guns at all, that's going to bring more people into their shops, then maybe it's a pr move and if it's not, then it's hard to imagine walmart saying to its investors or stockholders, we're
going to do what doesn't make political sense especially when the country can't even come together and say, hey, maybe we shouldn't allow people on the no fly list not to buy guns. we can't close loopholes like the one in charleston. because our system is imperfect, people like him fall through the cracks. until we can figure out how to come together as a country, it's hard to say the solution isn't going to be pressuring retailers into selling less guns. they're always going to be available, it has to come from people coming together and getting their lawmakers and the president to say, this is enough, we need to pass some restrictions here that will stop this from happening again and again. >> we'll leave it there for now. good to see you both, thanks so much. tonight, fareed zakaria
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a camera might figure it out. that was easy! glad i could help. at xfinity, we're here to make life simple. easy. awesome. so come ask, shop, discover at your xfinity store today. welcome back. president trump says kim jong-un wants to restart nuclear negotiations once joint military exercises between the u.s. and
south korea are over. trump tweeting out today that kim's request came in a new letter sent to him by the north korean dictator. samantha vinograd is joining me. good to see you, sam. what do you make of the timing of this letter and the president's tweets? >> that's a big problem from a security perspective. kim jong-un is linking u.s. joint military exercises to denuclearization. joint military exercises are critical for force readiness with respect to the united states protecting its interests in the region. kim jong-un is doing something very different with these missile tests. he's testing these missiles to get at trump and to try to make trump fear that he's going to call off denuclearization talks. but at the same time, fred, and
this is getting a bit lost with all of the tweets, these missile tests advance north korean capabilities. the missiles that they have tested recently are a new kind of missile and every time kim jong-un does one of these tests, he's advancing north korean capabilities whether it be the reliability of the missiles or something else. so president trump is focused -- we heard yesterday, on potentially a third summit with kim jong-un. but if they do meet again from an analytic perspective, north korea's capabilities have increased while we have paired down joint military exercises and our force readiness is degrading. >> what's the psychology that you're seeing here that kim jong-un is playing when in this letter he apparently, according to the president, issued a small apology for some of those missile tests and is now saying, let's meet again. >> i would expect a big apology or for the president to demand one when they fire missiles.
but the psychology is appealing to president trump's desire to be a historic leader and to make progress on denuclearization even though that's not happening. while also we don't know what's in the letter, playing to president trump's focus on the cost of these military exercises. he said that these military exercises are ridiculous and too expensive. and my question for the president is, what should the united states be spending money on if not protecting the united states and our allies from a dictator and his missiles. kim jong-un is trying to get donald trump back to the negotiating table. he's sidelining the experts in the united states who know something about north korea who have actual intelligence on kim jong-un's intentions and trying to get president trump to do some kind of quid pro quo i think with respect to sanctions relief, joint military exercises and north korea stopping these short-range tests. >> the president has said that the goal is denuclearization, but thus far, there has been no
evidence, you know, to show that north korea is willing to do that. what really is the objective here? >> well, this is exactly kim jong-un's objective, to make no progress on denuclearization which the u.s. intelligence community has said he won't do. the nuclear program is kim jong-un's crown jewel, so to speak. kim's objective is to get president trump focused on something else, like the cost of a joint military exercise or the short-range missile tests which are dangerous, while kim jong-un continues to make progress on his on inventional and unconventional capabilities. president trump's strategy, i struggle to see what it is other than to say that he's made progress on anything but denuclearization. he pointed yesterday to the return of hostage remains and some other small steps that north korea has taken. but there has been no progress on denuclearization and the intelligence community, there's reporting that they have
assessed that north korea has increased their nuclear capabilities. if they meet again, north korea will have an enhanced nuclear capability since these talks began rather than having engaged in denuclearization. >> wow. all right. samantha vinograd, thank you so much. coming up, the deadly mass shooting in ohio and texas now have film makers in hollywood scrambling as a major studio cancels plans to release a new movie. you wouldn't accept an incomplete job
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than anyone else in the country. this just in, universal studios is canceling the september 27th release of the film "the hunt" in the wake of last weekend's mass shootings. >> haunting human beings for sport. >> they're not human beings -- >> you've probably seen this promo that stirred controversy. the r-rated film is based around a premise where elites hunt every day people for sport. they say we stand by our filmmakers and will contribute to distribute films in partnership with creators. we understand that now is not the right time to release this film. i'm joined now on the phone by
cnn media analyst bill carter. this is a pretty big thing nor universal or any big film house to say we are going to suspend or cancel the release as a result of current events. >> it is, it's not the first time it's happened before. obviously that was a lot on television when they have television shows that are obviously following newscasts and things like that. if you think about what they were doing with this, they really had no choice. this was a -- it was a movie about people being slaughter bid guns. with the mood of the country right now, it is so shocked at what's really happening that it seemed like it was incomprehensible that they would attempt to put this movie out right now. >> the president also slammed this film on twitter this week saying it intends to enflame and cause chaos, end quote. so the premise of this movie is
pretty tough. it's a tough one to swallow. >> yes. >> but somehow there was a lot of advocacy for this film. they did put it together. >> it was a satire. but the point is, one of the things about the movie was that the people being slaughtered were like what they called deplorables, the conservatives were being the targets in this movie. it was a satire. and obviously i think they were going for something that would make people sort of both horrified and maybe think was funny, but that's one reason trump rackeeacts to it. in any event, it doesn't matter, it was about guns and slaughtering people and bottom line is, that's really where it went wrong. what's interesting is, they're going to delay the movie or put it off to another time, but the way things have happened in america, you can't predict when any of these events are going to happen. two of these happened within a
day so they could schedule this movie for six months from now and some other thing could happen right before that. it's a very dicey theme for a movie to put out in our current state of violence in america. >> and do you think it was the current events which was tit? >> it has to be the current events. i saw the promos for the movie and said they can't put this on now. it's offensive, it offends people's sensibilities. the idea of using guns this way, clearly that is the source of all of this outrage in america right now. the use of guns in these incidents. maybe trump pushed it a little further, but i think the main reason is just -- it was in bad taste to put a movie like this out. >> thank you so much. >> any time. we'll be right back. i had a heart problem.
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welcome back. jeffrey epstein, the multimillionaire and accused sex trafficker is dead. cnn has learned that the 66-year-old was discovered in his jail cell early this morning where officials believed he hanged himself. cnn has learned that he was not on suicide watch as of late july. epstein was being held on multiple federal charges which he pled not guilty to last month. the indictment accused him in part of soliciting sex from girls as young as 14-year-old. but in 2003, there were questions about epstein's behavior. journalist vicky ward says she wrote an article for "vanity fair" where she had on the record accusations from three different women the magazine would not publish her reporting. vicky is with me now. good to see you. >> thank you. >> tell me more about this powerful network that epstein
built and how he actually made his money and we'll talk further about the accusations in your reporting on that. >> it's interesting, i was talking to one of my sources this morning who i had talked to back in 2002 for that "vanity fair" article and this person said, you know, it was networking, women, money. it was all a game to jeffrey epstein. it was all one big game. how he made his money was a mystery. that was why i was assigned the article. he lived in the biggest private home in new york. so big it had once been a school. and no one could understand where the money came from. he told people -- and a lot of that is still a mystery. >> it completely remains a mystery. what i did discover in my reporting back then was that what he told people was just not true.
he was not a money manager for a large number of billionaires because there was no sign of him in the market. what i also discovered was that steve hofenberg who went to jail told me from his jail cell that he was in fact jeffrey epstein's mentor and he claimed jeffrey epstein denied it. he claimed that jeffrey epstein helped facile late that scheme. so more mysteries really. but he was not what he said he was. the network that you talked about, frederica, that's fascinating because he was very clever in the way that he would introduce businessmen to
academics, scientists, noble prize winners. everybody felt they were in an eclectic dinner party. the person who put all of this together for him was not jeffrey epstein. it was gallin maxwell of whom there's been -- >> her name appears a lot in this -- in these documents. when you talk about this network, so you've touched on, there's the money, then there's power, and now the sex portion that involved accusations from accusers who were as young as 14 and now what has led to these charges of sex trafficking, you know, of teenagers, this is part of that big network. >> it is part of the big network. and i think, you know, frederica, that what had so many people interested and on the edge of their seats about
this -- what would have been jeffrey epstein's trial, but that still really matters is the trial, if you like, of the ecosystem. don't forget, the original indictment talked about a conspiracy. there have been many other names brought up in connection with with this case, former president bill clinton, and others. a retailer last week saying i gave jeffrey epstein power of attorney but i discovered in it would have been, he stole millions and millions from me. but it begs the question, why did leslie wexler not go to the authorities. the fact that the case still is going to sort of go forward means that all the people connected to it, after all it was a conspiracy, should still
think that they're going to be questioned. >> some of the attorneys for these accusers have said that even in his death, they will continue to pursue avenues to find those responsible, whether they're co-conspirator is. this case is not dead because jeffrey epstein is. for now. vicky ward, thank you so much for your time. i appreciate it. we'll continue to follow this because it continues to be a big mystery. thank you so much. >> yes. thank you. we'll be right back. at t-mobile, for $40/line for four lines, it's all included for the whole family, starting with unlimited data. use as much as you want, when you want. and if you like netflix, it's included on us. plus no surprises on your bill. taxes and fees are included. and now for a limited time, with each new line, get one of our latest smartphones included.
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mental illness and jumped off the golden gate bridge. >> i hit the water and it shattered my spine. the second my hands left the rail, instant regret. >> this is the place where you jumped? >> yeah. this is the place where i lived. >> over the last two decades, the suicide rate in the united states has gone up 33% making it the number two cause of death in this country for people aged 10 to 24. hines has spent the last 16 years as an activist for suicide prevention. his goal to get a net attached to the golden gate bridge, a barrier to stop someone from dying. and his fight meant something, the net is finally going up. >> there it is. >> that's the net.
it's going up on the golden gate as of 2021. this is one of the most special days of my life. >> dr. sanjay gupta, cnn, reporting. >> wow. tonight in the cnn original series, the movies, we take a look back at some of the classic films from the 1960s. here's a preview. >> we're off to the people of "my fair lady." one of the biggest opening nights with a roster of stars that will make your eyes blink. the star of the picture, rex harrison. >> they have a contest to see if henry higgens can transform this pow power girl into someone who can pass off as royalty. >> you see this creature, in six
months, i could pass her off as a duchess. >> he became that rare guy who could recreate his role on air. julie andrews was turned down by jack warner who personally produce it had movie in favor of audrey hepburn. ♪ >> by george, he's got it. >> i love "my fair lady." the music is incredible. ♪ >> how fun to see that begin. don't miss the episode tomorrow night on cnn. thank you for joining me toed. see you back here tomorrow. we've got more in the "cnn
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(inhale, exhale) air wick you don't live in one corner. fragrance shouldn't either. air wick's new technology releases fragrance upwards and outwards unlike febreze. so now you can fill every corner with fragrance. upgrade to air wick. you're live in the "cnn newsroom." i'm ana cabrera in new york. jeffrey epstein is dead. a law enforcement source tells cnn epstein apparently hanged himself in his cell. he had beenwa