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Thousands March Across The Country; Atlanta Protesters Shut Down Highway; Investigators: Gunman Had Arsenal Of Weapons; Murdered Officers Remembered; Police On Edge After Recent Attacks. Aired 6-7a ET

Aired July 9, 2016 - 06:00   ET




[06:00:13] UNIDENTIFIED CALLER: We got a guy with a long rifle. We don't know where the hell he's at!

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There's four cops down.

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: There's no possible justification for these kinds of attacks.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're hurting. Dallas officers are hurting. We are heartbroken.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Since day one he's born here as a hero.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Let's come together as a country.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, my God, please don't tell me he's dead. I want my justice. I want people to know who did this to us.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I for one will not rest until the adequate punishment is served to all parties involved.


CHRISTI PAUL, CNN ANCHOR: It's been a head shaking, heartbreaking several days together here, hasn't it? We're so grateful for your company today. I'm Christi Paul.

Victor Blackwell, my partner, there in Dallas talking about what we know this morning. Not just about what has happened but also looking at a lot of the protests that happened overnight, right -- Victor.

VICTOR BLACKWELL, CNN ANCHOR: Yes, Christi. We'll get to those protests in just about 15 seconds. I want to start here by just telling our viewers who are just joining us where we are. We're in front of the Dallas Police Department Headquarters. Two cruisers behind me covered with flowers. There are candles there around the wheels, the tires, notes, flowers and balloons. And this is the front page. I want to hold it up here of the "Dallas Morning News," the pictures of those officers killed here on Thursday night and the headline just two words summing up the pain here on the second morning after that attack, "We're hurting."

We'll talk more about the hurting and the healing as we move through the day here. But the city of Dallas, as we said, reeling, this Texas town, the epicenter of a tragedy, the heartbreak spreads now across the nation.

Five officers murdered here by a lone gunman, targeting white officers who was working a peaceful protest march. That march was in response to two other tragic incidents this week.

Two black men killed in encounters with police in separate incidents, one in Minnesota, one in Louisiana. Now overnight thousands across the country responded the way they knew how in numbers, marching to have their voices heard.


BLACKWELL: This is Rochester, New York, 74 people here, though, arrested for disorderly conduct. Hundreds protested police shooting there. In San Francisco, men and women there at city hall protesting what they call a racist police system.

Protesters flood New York's Grand Central Station angered by police violence demanding justice there. Tensions flared in Baton Rouge. This is where Alton Sterling was killed early this week. That protest ending just a few hours ago.

The rally is there, clashed with police who were wearing riot gear and a few of them placed under arrest. In Phoenix, police used pepper spray and shot bean bags pushing back protesters trying to protest and overrun a freeway. There were three people arrested there after rocks were thrown at police.

The biggest protest, though, in Atlanta. Demonstrators just stopped traffic here. You see the standoff with police on a major road there, major highway. They overtook both lanes of traffic bringing rush hour to a standstill.

Now despite the incredible size of this gathering, Atlanta's mayor says that fewer than ten were arrested. Polo Sandoval was there during that protest and he filed this report.


POLO SANDOVAL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Peaceful yet tense is one way to describe what took place on the streets of Atlanta Friday evening. It all started as a peaceful march at the streets of downtown. However, authorities quickly sealed off the route that some of the protesters.

Thousands of them were taking as soon as they were heading towards the interstate. Authorities basically creating what was a human chain, uniforms shoulder to shoulder here keeping some of these protesters from making their way out to the interstate.

As the mayor of Atlanta said the main concern here is they don't want anybody to get hurt whether it's police officers, protesters, especially some of the people who are simply out for a drive.

[06:05:04]So that's one of the reasons why things did escalate a bit during the early evening hours. That's when you basically had authorities, troopers, police officers facing off with some of these demonstrators as well.

I'll have to say what's interesting there were actual conversations that were happening between law enforcement and some of these demonstrators as well at the head of the line. People were having conversations.

In fact, there were some individuals that would actually go up to these troopers, shake their hand and say thank you for their service. So it's interesting dynamic on the streets of Atlanta.

Authorities will be on high alert throughout the weekend. They do say that they will be taking a more tactical approach for future demonstrations in light of what happened in Dallas. Back to you.


BLACKWELL: All right, our thanks to Polo Sandoval for filing that report. Meanwhile, authorities are trying to get inside the head of this gunman, the man behind the deadliest attack on law enforcement since 9/11.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Is that a cop dead? That's a cop down. Dude, that's cop down. There's four cops down.



BLACKWELL: Authorities says the gunman, 25-year-old Micah (ph) Johnson had an arsenal of weapons when he unloaded into the crowd on Thursday night with a mission to kill white people, especially white police officers according to the chief of police here in Dallas.

Investigators searched that Army veteran's home finding bomb making materials, ballistic vest, rifles, ammunition, and a personal journal of combat tactics. That journal could be really key to learning how he was able to pull off this attack.

President Obama now cutting his trip short overseas in order to head to Dallas early next week.

We'll bring in Sara Sidner here in just a moment to talk about what we're learning about this shooter. Sara, if you could come on in and join us now. There are questions about initially when this happened the connection to what was happening on that day. Police have said there is no connection. He was very critical of black lives matter. What do we know about what seemed to be the length of time he planned this and this seemed to be planned before that protest?

SARA SIDNER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes. I think when the shooting happened they suddenly realized this was something that had to have been planned. Now looking at the evidence they are pulling out of his home, it certainly appears that way.

There's a journal about tactics. He was reading through these pamphlets that shows how shoot and move. For a while there basically people thought and police thought that there were two separate snipers shooting from a high vantage point literally picking police officers off one by one by one, killing five people, injuring seven.

But then they realize that this was just one man and they started to negotiate with him. They negotiated for hours according to the police chief. But that, obviously, did not work.

But they started to take things out of the house after he was dead and realized that this was something he had certainly planned, this was something he had certainly taken the time to figure out how to do this bastardly deed.

He had the ammunition. People saw ammunition falling out of his pockets that's how much ammunition he had on him. They found a rifle, ballistic vests in his house. So this was a person who was clearly prepared to do the worst and utmost damage.

Not someone involved with the Black Lives Matter Movement, not someone involved as he said with any organization but clearly upset about what was happening and what is happening in this country between police and African-Americans.

And so those things, obviously, played a role in his mind, but it was made very clear by police this had nothing to do with the protest. In fact, they said look during the protest we have pictures of police officers and protesters, who are there protesting police brutality getting along quite fine. There are selfies.

Absolutely. This department has worked for years to put itself in a good position with the community. It is community policing that's going on here and you saw that during those protests. And I think we have to be very clear that these were two absolutely and completely separate incidents.

The only link is that this person saw what was going on in America, it affected him. We don't know what was going on in his mind just yet, but we're getting a clearer picture that he was angry. He targeted white people that's what he told police and targeted particularly white police officers.

BLACKWELL: And took the opportunity to have, as you said did this deed to conduct that because there were a large number of police officers there for that protest.

Sara Sidner, we'll talk more about what happens next in the investigation in just a moment. Thanks so much for being with us this morning.

Some of the words used to describe the officers killed here in Dallas, because we're going to focus on them this morning, great, dedicated, wonderful dad.

[06:10:06]Coming up how the community is rallying to show their support for those victims.

Plus over at Baylor Medical Center other officers who survived the ambush, that's where they were treated. Our Kyung Lah is following that part of the story for us.

KYUNG LAH, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Victor, it was controlled chaos, fear and then the realization that the very people who were being targeted here were police officers. I'm Kyung Lah outside Baylor University Medical Center. I'll bring you the stories of the ER doctors, who treated the very first victims.


BLACKWELL: I'm Victor Blackwell. Back live now in front of the Dallas Police Headquarters. We're learning more about the victims of the deadly ambush here on Thursday night. Twelve members of law enforcement here in Dallas were shot during that peaceful protest.

Some members of the police department, others of the Dallas Area Rapid Transit System. The protests, though, were in response to the deaths of two black men at the hands of police in Minnesota and Louisiana earlier in the week. Five police officers did not make it.

Our Jean Casarez has their story.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We are reminded of the power of faith and the uniqueness that happens when we call on a higher power.

JEAN CASAREZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): An emotional prayer vigil in the city of Dallas as the community mourns the loss of five police officers. Among the victims 43-year-old Brent Thompson, a seven-year veteran of the Dallas Area Rapid Transit Police, the father and grandfather was originally from Corsicana, Texas.

Thompson traveled to and survived the most dangerous parts of the world helping to bring justice to those that didn't have it.

[06:15:05]According to his LinkedIn page, Thompson was chief of operations for a private military contractor in Iraq from 2004 through 2008.

GARY THOMAS, WORKED WITH OFFICER BRENT THOMPSON: He was dedicated officer, dedicated to the safety of Americans all over the world certainly.

CASAREZ: The 32-year-old Patrick Zamarripa (ph) also survived the odds of serving overseas only to be killed protecting his hometown. The Dallas police officer was deployed to the Middle East as part of the Iraq war effort.

Just this week he tweeted out his love for our country. His brother, Dustin, tweeting, "Love you, brother. Couldn't be prouder. We'll see you again."

The 40-year-old Michael Krol (ph) always wanted to be an officer and fulfilled his dream when he joined the Dallas police force in 2008. Also killed Dallas Police Officer Lorne Ahrens, 14-year veteran of the Dallas Police Department according to media reports.

And Dallas Police Officer Michael Smith. Smith joined the department in 1989, according to his sister who spoke to CNN affiliate, KFDM. Five officers lost their lives. Another seven were wounded including Officer Misty McBride. Her family rushing to the hospital to be by her side.

HUNTER MCBRIDE, DAUGHTER: She can live on to tomorrow and that I'm just glad that she's alive really.

CASAREZ: Alive but according to her father requiring surgery.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She was shot in the arm and it broke her shoulder and she was shot in the abdomen and it went in one side and went out the other side.

CASAREZ: Still the McBrides know they are the lucky ones. Hunter telling her mother --

MCBRIDE: I love you. I'm glad you're here.

CASAREZ: Jean Casarez, CNN, New York.


BLACKWELL: I want to share with you one of the quiet poignant moments that happened Thursday night into Friday morning. If you haven't seen it you should and if you have it doesn't hurt to see it again. This happened just after the shooting.

Doctors and hospital staff, this was over at Parkland Memorial Hospital. They linked arms around group of uniformed officers to give them privacy to say goodbye to their fallen colleagues. This was a very important moment. Happened early, early Friday morning.

Kyung Lah is live at Baylor University Medical Center where some of the other victims of this shooting were taken. Kyung, get us up to date, up to speed on those who survived the shooting and how they are doing.

LAH: We don't have exact details on their status. The hospital says that they are trying to work with the Dallas Police Department to offer some privacy, some sort of peace for the families as these officers work through the trauma of their injuries.

But from what we've heard from city, Victor, what they are anticipating is that most of them have already been released or will soon be in the process being released. What we heard from in the overnight hours is we got to sit down with some of the very first responders, the people who were here at the ER.

They described what it was like the first call that was, that it was a shooting. They came here expecting the very first victims and then there was this realization that this wasn't just a shooting.

The first victims arriving not by paramedics, they were arriving in their own bullet ridden squad cars. Here's what ER doctor told us.


DR. STEPHEN BURGHER, EMERGENCY ROOM PHYSICIAN: The police officers basically rode in their cars and got here as fast as they good. Came screeching around the corner. The squad cars themselves were shot up. Some of their tires were blown out so they were coming on wheels. Sparks flying.

We had multiple patients suddenly that we needed to take care of. The most critical we had the team up front take care of those patients as I then approached and as people then converged we realized, OK, we need to get this team on this patient, this team on this patient.

And we need to make sure we had the right teams on each patient. We needed to start thinking as we understood there's still an active shooter. We had to start preparing for the next wave of patients.

LAH: At what point did it start to dawn on everybody what was happening inside the city?

SHERRY SUTTON, NURSE MANAGER, BAYLOR UNIVERSITY ER: I think it was when the officers started to all come in and you saw their emotions and frustrations and just how sad they were and just really one officer was -- you know, he was watching the news and hearing what was happening out there and the emotions that he had because, you know, those were his -- that was his team out there that was being shot at.

[06:20:01]And he started crying when he was watching the news. I think that's when it really hit me that oh, my gosh, this could really be like Orlando. We have to prepare for the worst and we don't know how many patients will be coming in or whether they will be police officers or civilians. We have to be ready for these guys.


LAH: And when Sherry Shutton, the nurse there, when she talks about these guys, she's talking about her husband. Her husband is a Dallas police officer. He was working that day. Thankfully, he wasn't one of the first people who was downtown when all of this happened, but certainly you can imagine the fear gripping her as she's trying to do her job. Dr. Burgher, he mentioned something to us that we found very interesting, Victor. He has spent a lot of time. He's in the reserves with the Navy. He spent a lot of time in the Middle East. He said what he was experiencing yesterday was very much like a trauma in Afghanistan -- Victor.

BLACKWELL: All right. Kyung Lah there for us. Thank you so much, Kyung.

Some cops are saying that they feel under attack across the country, reports of police also feeling like they are being targeted, lured, ambush. The recent shootings sparking a debate now on how police can protect themselves.


BLACKWELL: Welcome back. I'm Victor Blackwell outside of the Dallas police headquarters here and as the country mourns the loss of the five officers murdered in Dallas, police officers across the country are now on edge as several more of them have become target in just the last 24 to 48 hours.

[06:25:06]So far there have been attacks in police officers in Tennessee, in Georgia, Missouri, and Louisiana. Now hours before the Dallas ambush, the first attack happened in Bristol, Tennessee.

Police say a man opened fire on drivers early Thursday at a motel along the Volunteer Parkway. Killing a woman and wounding three people including a police officer. The gunman was shot and arrested.

Now to Valdosta, Georgia, investigators say a man made a bogus theft call to police in order to lure an officer to an apartment complex and then shot and wounded that man. The officer was able to shoot back at the gunman. Both are in an area hospital there.

Now let's go to Baldwin, Missouri. Police say a driver who was pulled over for speeding shot the officer in the neck. That officer is in critical condition this morning. The gunman ran away but was later captured.

And New Orleans, the FBI has notified local police departments of social media threats to officers. Here's one. I'm going to read it here, must kill every police.

Now, I want you to also having that in context listen to something that the mayor of Dallas, Mike Rawlings, said at a news conference here just yesterday. Let's play it and we'll talk on the other side.


MAYOR MIKE RAWLINGS, DALLAS: But the chief makes decisions at times that people could be critical of. He escalated it too much. Do you put too much body armor on? Think about today. This is what you're risking if you don't do it right.

(END VIDEO CLIP) BLACKWELL: Let's bring in CNN law enforcement analyst, Cedric Alexander, and Attorney Lance Lo Russo who is also former law enforcement officer. Good morning to both of you.

Cedric, I want to start with you. Detail for us because you're head of the department there in Dekalb, the public safety officer there. What is that balance and how is it struck between protecting the officer and defending against these criticisms?

CEDRIC ALEXANDER, CNN LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: Well, you know, let's understand something here very quickly because oftentimes those two are mixed up. There is a part of policing where you do have to militarize yourself and we live in a very different time post-9/11.

Certainly we're very community oriented. We like to go out. They have oneself gear, their uniform. But in cases such as what we saw the other night in Dallas and also in Orlando, we were up against violent individuals, who were carrying high powered weaponry.

And in the case there in Dallas also there is indication or suspect of IED explosives being possible. So you have to prepare your police department one, to be trained in this weaponry, to have the necessary equipment and gear combat or fight an opposing subject who is coming into your environment, into your scene with high caliber weapons.

I mean, let's go back to San Bernardino. That was a major shoot out there on the streets of San Bernardino with two individuals who had high powered rifles who came for a military-type of fight. So you have to have training. Training is the important key here.

But do officers walk around all day long with this weaponry on them or in fatigues? No. We don't see that. But when they come to that type of fight, they have to be prepared for it. But it's about training and it's about understanding the difference between the two because today police have to be those guardians.

But at the same time, they have to be able to gear up for a different kind of fight that we're seeing streets of our country by those who are trying to do great harm to a great number of people at one time.

BLACKWELL: Lance, let me come to you with how this -- what we saw on Thursday night. These officers, granted were coming out to secure and protect the people who were -- therefore, peaceful protesters and the protest was peaceful, but they were outgunned by this one man. How does this impact the conversation of demilitarization of police officers that started after Ferguson, after Baltimore?

LANCE LO RUSSO, AUTHOR, "WHEN COPS KILL": My heart goes out to the Dallas police officers. You know, every police officer remembers they found out one of their own was shot or killed in the line of duty. The whole demilitarization thing is pretty interesting.

We have people in the debate that really have no idea about law enforcement tactics or information. In Ferguson, people were throwing frozen water bottles at law enforcement and Molotov cocktails. [06:30:00] So if you are a police administrator and you have the ability to protect those officers from being burned or injured, you have an obligation to use those efforts to do that.

And what we've seen is people pulling, or the government pulling some of these surplus military vehicles from law enforcement in Georgia and at the same time, the shoot out, the same week, the shoot out in San Bernardino, those officers were protected and those devices were used to keep them alive. And that's the bottom line.

Demilitarization has been addressed to everything from officers wearing high-quarter boots to carrying rifles. And bottom line is the technology is there to protect them and we owe them the best protection that we can give them at the time.

This concept of guardians versus warriors, warriors run into gunfire and protect citizens that are protesting to try to keep them alive. Guardians draw chalk lines, and every one of those Dallas police officers are warriors and that's what was needed at that moment.

BLACKWELL: From your perspective, Cedric, the name of your book is "The New Guardians."

What do you think about it? And I'm not trying to start a conflict here, but this concept of warrior versus guardian, the role of police officers.

CEDRIC ALEXANDER, CNN LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: Well, me and Mr. LoRusso are really saying the same thing. "The Guardian" concept is exactly that. We are there to be in the communities to assist, to be a part of, a member of that community, a part of that community.

We're talking about those individuals who are prepared, they are trained, they got the best training to go out, and do their jobs inside those communities. That's clearly stated in my book.

But there's a flip side. The flip side of that in certain circumstances, and just as we were talking about, where police officers are going to engage a threat of individuals who want to do great harm to a great number of people, they have to be prepared for that fight as well too.

So, you always are going to have this continuum. We are here, we serve as guardians but we also have to be prepared to move into a much more proactive type of position in order to go up against the real threats that are out there. And I choose not to refer to them so much as warriors, as those that are guardians, but have the ability to move from guardian and to move into that position where they can save lives if necessary with the right equipment and technology.

BLACKWELL: All right. Cedric Alexander, Lance LoRusso, thank you so much for being part of the conversation this morning. We'll continue to have separate angles of this conversation throughout the morning, including the political element here.

The presidential candidates are now addressing the ambush here in Dallas. And the deaths of two black men in Minnesota and Louisiana after encounters with police. A look at how the candidates are responding to these events to rally supporters.


[06:31:35] BLACKWELL: I'm Victor Blackwell here outside of the Dallas Police Department. Right behind me is this memorial that's grown over the last day and a half after the shooting here.

And I understand why these flowers, why the balloons, why this community is hurting. We need to go back and look at really the devastating week.

Two black men in two different parts of the country were shot by police officers, and then this in Dallas.



BLACKWELL (voice-over): Three consecutive days of violence sending shockwaves through the nation. Tuesday morning, police are called to the "Triple S" food mart in Baton Rouge, Louisiana for a report of a man with a gun. Officers Howie Lake II and Blane Salamoni tackled 37- year-old Alton Sterling to the grounds and after a brief scuffle, Sterling is shot several times.

Graphic video of the incident caught on bystander cell phones.






BLACKWELL: The video was shared widely across social media sparking local protests and drawing national attention. Sterling's 15-year-old son openly weeping during a press conference the next day. Sterling's Family demanding justice.

QUINYETTA MCMILLAN, MOTHER OF ALTON STERLING'S OLDEST SON: I say again, I for one, will not rest and will not allow, you all, to sweep him in the dirt until adequate punishment is served to all parties involved.

BLACKWELL: The investigation now in the hands of the Department of Justice.

Wednesday night, 32-year-old Philando Castile is shot and killed during a traffic stop in Falcon Heights, Minnesota. His girlfriend, Diamond Reynolds, live streams the aftermath of the shooting on Facebook. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DIAMOND REYNOLDS, PHILANDO CASTILE'S GIRLFRIEND: Stay with me. We got pulled over for a busted taillight in the back and the police (EXPLETIVE DELETED), he's covered. He killed my (EXPLETIVE DELETED) boyfriend.

He's licensed. He has licensed to carry. He was trying to get out his I.D. in his wallet, out of his pocket and he let the officer know that he was -- he had a firearm and he was reaching for his wallet. And the officer just shot him in his arm.

We're waiting for a -- I will, sir, no worries. I will.

He just shot his arm off. We got pulled over.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE POLICE OFFICER: I told him not to reach for it. I told him to get his hand open.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You told him to get his I.D., sir and his driver's license. Oh, my God, please don't tell me he's dead.

Please don't tell me my boyfriend just went like that.


BLACKWELL: His family saying he was targeted because he was black.

VALERIE CASTILE, MOTHER OF PHILANDO CASTILE: I think he was black in the wrong place.

REYNOLDS: We didn't do anything. We put our hands in the air. We knew our rights and we followed procedure.

V. CASTILE: He's not a gangbanger. He's not a thug. He's very respectable. And I know he didn't antagonize that officer in anyway.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: None whatsoever.

V. CASTILE: To make him feel like his life was in danger.

REYNOLDS: (INAUDIBLE), not one shot, not two shots, not three, not four but five shots.

[00:40:00] BLACKWELL: Even the state's governor questioning whether this incident was racially motivated.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Would this have happened if those passengers or the driver or the passenger were white, I don't think it would have.

BLACKWELL: President Obama addressing the shootings of both men as protests break out nationwide.

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: When incidents like this occur, there's a big chunk of our fellow citizenry that feels as if because of the color of their skin, they are not being treated the same and that hurts. And that should trouble all of us.


BLACKWELL: Thursday, as hundreds of people take to the streets to protest the violence, chaos erupts.


BLACKWELL: A gunman begins firing into the crowd, targeting police officers.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE OFFICER: There's four cops down.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE OFFICER: Yes. He shot five, seven times.


BLACKWELL: The chaos captured on police scanners.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE OFFICER: Assist, officer shots fired. Code 3. Officer down.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE OFFICER: We got a guy with a long rifle. We don't know where the hell he's at.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE OFFICER: Slow down. He's in the damn building right there. He's in that building.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE OFFICER: We're hearing shots from that building.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE OFFICER: We have got to get DFC down here now. (INAUDIBLE), get them here.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE OFFICER: We believe he's in the El Centro College building.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE OFFICER: Looks like he's inside the El Centro building, inside the El Centro building.

BLACKWELL: In the end, 12 officers are shot. Five of them are killed. It is the single deadliest day for law enforcement since 9/11.

CHIEF DAVID BROWN, DALLAS POLICE: There are no words to describe the atrocity that occurred to our city. All I know is that this must stop. This divisiveness between our police and our citizens. We don't feel much support most days. Let's not make today most days. Please, we need your support.

BLACKWELL: Police identified the gunman as 25-year-old Micah Xavier Johnson. The Dallas police chief saying Johnson told them he was upset about the recent police shootings and that he wanted to kill white people especially white officers and that he acted alone.

After several hours of negotiations, he's killed by a police bomb robot.

President Obama calling the shooting a vicious, calculated and despicable attack on law enforcement and ordering flags at public buildings around the country flown at half-staff.

LORETTA LYNCH, ATTORNEY GENERAL: This has been a week of profound grief and heartbreaking loss.

BLACKWELL: Attorney General Loretta Lynch speaking Friday urging Americans to move forward together.

LYNCH: To all Americans, I ask you, I implore you, do not let this week precipitate a new normal in this country. I ask you to turn to each other, not against each other as we move forward. Let us support one another. Let us help heal one another. And I urge you to remember today and every day, that we are one nation. We are one people. And we stand together.


BLACKWELL: A tragic, tragic week across this country. The politicians, the presidential candidates are weighing in. That conversation is next.


[06:47:00] BLACKWELL: I'm Victor Blackwell, welcome back. It's just before 6:00 a.m. here in Dallas. And there are families who are coming here to the Dallas Police Department already, bringing flowers and notes and balloons and candles to remember the five officers killed here on Thursday night.

PAUL: Victor, thank you so much. I'm Christi Paul.

Of course, we're so grateful to have your company and to get that perspective from Victor who is there at the scene.

I want to let you know about some other stories surrounding everything we've seen in the last two, three, four days here.

First of all, after visiting Spain today, President Obama is going to be cutting his European trip short. He'll return to Washington tomorrow and travel to Dallas. That's at the request of the city's mayor.

In Poland yesterday, he talked about how he felt regarding the loss of the five Dallas officers.


OBAMA: I believe that I speak for every single American when I say that we are horrified over these events, and that we stand united with people and the police department in Dallas.


PAUL: Now as for those running for president, both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump cancelled campaign appearances yesterday. They were responding to the Dallas ambush.

We want to let you hear some of what Hillary Clinton told our Wolf Blitzer.


HILLARY CLINTON (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We need to be bringing people together. And I have said on the campaign trail repeatedly, we need more love and kindness. And I know that's not usually what presidential candidates say, but I believe it. And I'm going to be speaking about it from now all the way into the White House and beyond.


PAUL: And Donald Trump released a video statement.

Here it is for you.


DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We must stand in solidarity with law enforcement, which we must remember is the force between civilization and total chaos. Every American has the right to live in safety and peace.


PAUL: Wondering what you thought of the political reaction to the events this week.

Let's talk about it more with Scottie Neil Hughes, a Trump supporter and political editor at and Maria Cardona, CNN political commentator and Hillary Clinton supporter.

Ladies, so good to have both of you with us. Thank you.


PAUL: Good morning.

I want to start with some specific here. What Hillary Clinton says she plans to do about confrontations like the ones we've seen this week.

Let's take a listen together.


CLINTON: As president, I would implement the very comprehensive set of proposals that I've been making for more than a year including we must do more to have national guidelines about the use of force by police, especially deadly force. We need to do more, to look into implicit bias and we need to do more to respect and protect our police.


PAUL: Maria, what she says, nobody would really argue. She's absolutely right. The problem that some people might look at in what a lot of people have been saying is these are conversations we've been having since Michael Brown was killed two years ago and still it seems not a lot has changed.

Will national use of force guidelines work? Is there anything specific that she points to that gives you confidence she can make a difference?

CARDONA: Sure. I think that what she is talking bout is a holistic approach. I think we can all agree that there's not one silver lining here that will fix everything. And so I think what Hillary Clinton is talking about is to have a very comprehensive holistic approach that is defined and that is talked about using comments and using input from all sides of this debate.

I think you're right. We have been talking about this for a very long time. But I think what is happening is that instead of talking to each other, we have been talking either at each other, yelling at each other or talking past each other.

And what Hillary Clinton is proposing to do is she has some very specific proposals as you have seen and as she has talked about. Let's remember that her very first speech was about criminal justice reform. But she is also talking about people coming together and addressing these issues together. And talking to each other as opposed to past each other. And I think that that's something that has not been done as much as we need to do in the past.

And as she talks about bringing people together, not dividing people, but making sure that people are really coming together and listening to each other is definitely something that has not been done as much as needs to be done. And moving forward, I think, that she will focus on that.

PAUL: And let's listen to Donald Trump, too, what he said in his video statement.


TRUMP: Our children deserve a better future than what we're making them live through today. But to get them there, we must work together and stand together. We will make America safe again.


PAUL: I've heard some people saying he looks and sounds very presidential there. And he's speaking to families who are being hit with this chord, something that's resonating with them about what the future looks like for their children in America.

I'm just wondering from you, Scottie, how do you think that's going to resonate with people who are on the fence with Donald Trump.

SCOTTIE NEIL HUGHES, DONALD TRUMP SUPPORTER: Well, this is one of the benefits of not being one of the parties in power right now. Mr. Trump can sit there and say these things, you can insert the proposals while Hillary Clinton is trying to figure out how do I sit here and say that I'm going to do something different from the president who is currently in office.

You know, it is all about that teach a man to fish, or give a man a fish, you feed him for a day, teach a man how to fish and you feed him for a long time, for a lifetime.

Mr. Trump's plans are all about revitalizing, bringing actually -- replacing hate with respect. And I think that's something that we've lost.

50 percent of Americans today feel like their race relations have gotten worse since Barack Obama took office. That's not a good number. And that's across the board. That's all minorities.

So, right now, but you have to look at it. Since Mr. Trump is a businessman, because you know the way to do that, let's go and let's actually give these folks real hope by giving them jobs. Revitalize these inner communities and then you might actually be able to see the growth and the change come from within because obviously what we're doing right now is not working.

PAUL: Scottie Neil Hughes and Maria Cardona, I'm so sorry. We're out of time already. Thank you. We appreciate your input as always. We'll be right back.

CARDONA: Thank you, Christi.

PAUL: Sure. You, too.


BLACKWELL: Welcome back. Our coverage of the deadly police shootings continues here in Dallas.

PAUL: Yes, it does, Victor. It's something to see everything behind you there. He's going to have more for us, of course, at the top of the hour. And Dallas police ended the standoff with a new tactic that by all accounts we haven't seen before.

How officers used a robot to blow up the suspect and protect any officers from further harm.