CNN LIVE EVENT/SPECIAL
Sniper on Loose: Authorities Ask For More Pentagon Help in Case
Aired October 15, 2002 - 12:07 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: Our Pentagon correspondent, Barbara Starr, has been following what's going on from a military perspective. She's got some new and exclusive information for us -- Barbara.
BARBARA STARR, CNN PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT: Indeed, Wolf.
CNN has learned that, at the request of federal law enforcement, the Pentagon is now looking at what types of surveillance and reconnaissance equipment they might offer to use to help aid in hunting the sniper. Now, we should emphasize that no final decision has been made by military authorities about using military equipment in this hunt.
But, indeed, the Pentagon, as of today, has now put together what is being described to us as a package of ideas, again, about what types of military assets might be used. CNN has been asked to not detail the precise type of equipment that might be used out of concern for jeopardizing the investigation.
The plan, however, if it is approved by Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, would be to have civilian law enforcement officials working hand-in-hand with military officials. The idea would be simply to have the troops operating the equipment. And, of course, this is because the Posse Comitatus Doctrine in this country prevents, and indeed prohibits, the military from becoming directly involved in civilian law enforcement. There can be no military role in seizing and arresting domestic law enforcement suspects.
So, the idea here is to have those civilian law enforcement officials hand-in-hand, right next to the military troops that would be operating this equipment, the military forces would simply point out, by using this high-tech equipment, the potential targets to the civilian law enforcement officials.
CNN further understands today that Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and General Richard Myers, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, would have to sign what is call an "execute order" that would, indeed, then allow the use of this military equipment in this hunt for the sniper.
If that execute order is signed, the Pentagon may acknowledge it and may acknowledge that it is now involved in the hunt for the sniper, but the details are going to be very closely held.
So, again, Wolf, they are working on that here today at the Pentagon. No final decision has been made, we are told -- Wolf. BLITZER: Barbara Starr, breaking news for us here on CNN, as she often does. We'll have more, of course, as this becomes available. We'll stay in touch with Barbara over at the Pentagon.
TO ORDER A VIDEO OF THIS TRANSCRIPT, PLEASE CALL 800-CNN-NEWS OR USE OUR SECURE ONLINE ORDER FORM LOCATED AT www.fdch.com.