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CNN NEWSROOM

Virginia Shooting of GOP Congressman, 3 Others; Interview with Representative Rodney Davis; Aired 10:30-11a ET

Aired June 14, 2017 - 10:30   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


[10:30:00] BRIANNA KEILAR, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: And the women's game next week and this is just part of the thing that says it is summer in Washington, D.C., because even though you have these teams with dozens of players there are so many people who come out.

We have seen Supreme Court justices coming to these games. Not just members of Congress and senators, but officials and throughout all of Washington who flock to these games which are charity events. And it also provides a bipartisan spirit, I think, for a number of members of Congress. We're actually going to try to get Congressman Rodney Davis from Illinois over to talk with us. He -- I'm looking at him right now.

WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: Hold on a second, Brianna. Hold on. There is a news conference, Alexandria Police are about to update us.

KEILAR: OK.

BLITZER: Capitol Hill Police, I believe, as well. They are just getting themselves finally organized. This is in Alexandria, Virginia, right outside of Washington, D.C., where this shooting incident occurred.

CHIEF MIKE BROWN, ALEXANDRIA POLICE DEPARTMENT: Good morning, everybody. I'm Mike Brown, chief of the Alexandria Police Department. That's B-R-O-W-N.

(CROSSTALK)

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Can you come closer to the microphone, please?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Thank you.

BROWN: We are here today to give you an update on the incident that occurred this morning here in Alexandria. And let me repeat, if I can, some of the facts that we do know at this point. Before I start, though, I want to say that this incident is not an active incident. The city is safe. We have an active investigation going on for the incident that took place this morning, but I want to reassure the community here in Alexandria that this city is indeed safe.

We will continue to work with the investigation as it moves forward. The facts as we have it this morning again at 0709, nine minutes after 7:00, we received a call, a 911 call of an active shooter at Simpson Park here on Monroe in Alexandria. Our units responded and were on scene within three minutes. The officers were -- received fire from a suspect and they returned fire and that part of the investigation is ongoing as we speak.

We came to find out that at this event was a practice session for a baseball team involving some representatives from Congress or some employees from Congress. There were Capitol Police individuals contingent on scene and they also engaged with the subject and I'll let the chief of the Capitol Police respond to that.

The emergency medical personnel that responded to the scene from the Alexandria Fire Department as well as officers from the Alexandria Police Department provided treatment to a number of individuals on scene. Those individuals, we know that five of them were transported by Public Emergency Medical Sources to hospitals within the area to deal with a variety of injuries and treatment.

At this point the Alexandria Police Department because this case involves the assault on a federal officer, the Federal Bureau of Investigation will be taking over the investigation, and we welcome our work with the FBI.

We are embedded and are assisting the FBI along with other agencies that are trying to deal with this particular scene and this investigation of this incident. That said, I would also like to say our gratitude to the allied agencies that responded to this scene. We had individuals from the Alexandria Sheriff's Department, of course, the Alexandria Fire Department whose initial response helped us a great deal in trying to manage this thing, and quite frankly I couldn't be more proud of the men and women that were involved from the Alexandria Police Department. They did an outstanding job in my opinion, from what I hear so far.

At this point I'd like to go ahead and introduce Chief Verderosa from the Capitol Police to come up and talk a little bit about their efforts in this area and what they're doing. Chief?

CHIEF MATTHEW VERDEROSA, U.S. CAPITOL POLICE: Thank you, Chief. I would like to, of course, start out by thanking the Alexandria Police, Sheriff's Office, Fire Department, the FBI, ATF and all of our federal law enforcement and local partners who assisted in this response. Certainly it's a very large response. It's going to take a while to sort through all the details.

My units of our Dignitary Protection Division were on site with the congressional protectee when we had -- when the incident occurred. They did engage in gunfire with the suspect and were assisted by the Alexandria Police. The officers -- the United States Capitol Police officers who were injured are in good condition and have not suffered any life-threatening injuries at this point.

As we get more information we'll be working through the FBI and our local partners with the Alexandria Police to provide more details as they become available, but at this point I'd like to turn it over to the FBI. [10:35:12] TIM SLATER, SPECIAL AGENT IN CHARGE, FBI: Good morning.

Tim Slater. I'm the SAC, the special agent in charge of the Washington field office. And I just want to reiterate what the chiefs have said. This is a secure community at this point. It's an active investigation. However, the security of the community is paramount, and I want to reassure you that that's the case.

So we got involved around 9:30 this morning. Initially we responded with our National Capitol Response Squad from the JTTF per our protocol, and they're assisting our state and local partners. Once it was confirmed that we had a member of Congress that was involved in the incident we have taken the lead/ However, this is a joint command and this is a joint investigation with our state and local partners to include who has been at the microphone already and our partners from ATF and Alexandria County and Alexandria City and Capitol Police, as well.

I will take a couple of questions in just a second, but I want to turn it over to the governor for a second for a couple of comments.

GOV. TERRY MCAULIFFE (D), VIRGINIA: Thank you. First of all, our thoughts and prayers to everybody affected by today's incident. I want to congratulate the effort of the state, local and federal. We are all here together.

Early this morning state police and VDM were activated. I want to thank everybody who's involved but I specifically want to thank the first responders. I have been told that members of the neighborhood and the community came to be of assistance. This is truly an extraordinary effort.

I also want to compliment the U.S. Capitol Police for their quick action and through their heroic efforts and others they saved a lot of lives today. We do everything we can to keep our community safe, and I once again want to thank all the law enforcement personnel and first responders who were involved today. Thank you.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Agent Slater, sir? Can you step to the microphone?

(CROSSTALK)

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: What can you tell us about the suspect?

BARBARA STARR, CNN PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT: Is it your feeling at this point that this was -- what you see, number one, a deliberate, planned attack and are you investigating this now on the basis it could be an act of terrorism by an individual?

SLATER: Ma'am, it's too early to say. It's really raw at this moment. We are just at the initial part of the investigation so it's too early to say. We're working it both ways right now.

(CROSSTALK)

STARR: When you say you're working it both ways, is one of the angles you're exploring, investigating that it could be an active terrorism?

SLATER: We are exploring all angles.

STARR: And do you have any information -- it is said that there may be a tentative ID, even if you can't say, aren't specifics are you beginning to narrow down on the identity of the shooter?

SLATER: Yes, we are.

(CROSSTALK)

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Do you know who he is?

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Sir, was this an assassination attempt? Was this an assassination attempt?

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Do you know who he is?

SLATER: No, it's not an assassination attempt.

STARR: Do you know who he is?

SLATER: We're still working on it.

(CROSSTALK)

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Members of Congress were targeted?

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Former military?

SLATER: We'll not confirm that. No, sir.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Members of Congress were being targeted, though? Was it an intentional attack --

SLATER: It's too early to tell if they were targeted or not.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: What can you tell us about whether anyone suffered life-threatening injuries? Can you tell you about their condition?

SLATER: Don't know. Everybody was transported to the hospital and is receiving medical treatment. Just don't know about they're life- threatening or not.

(CROSSTALK)

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Agent Slater, a member of Congress said that the shooter asked are these Republicans or Democrats, can you say yet whether you think there is a political motivation?

SLATER: No. Not aware of that at all.

(CROSSTALK)

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Can you give any information on the weapons, sir?

SLATER: No information on the weapons. Don't know yet.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Sir, do you think this could have been random?

SLATER: Don't know. Still -- it's really early in the investigation.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: How do you know that then?

SLATER: I don't know any of those facts, right? It's too early to say one way or the other.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Can you give us the condition of the suspect? The suspect was taken to the hospital. Do you know what his condition? And also the general condition of the officers who were shot?

SLATER: I think the officers are doing better, I'm not sure about the suspect at this time.

(CROSSTALK)

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Is he talking to law enforcement?

SLATER: Say it again?

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Is there any motive?

SLATER: No, ma'am, not at this point.

(CROSSTALK)

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: -- the security detail that was here with Congressman Scalise in this incident. Can you just give us a sense of the fact that there were armed officers on the team when this started?

SLATER: Members of a dignitary protection, yes, they were here. Yes, as a protection team.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: And the difference it made?

SLATER: I'm sure it made a significant difference.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Sir, is the suspect talking at this point? Is he cooperating? Is he explaining --

SLATER: I do not know the answer to that.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: The security detail --

(CROSSTALK)

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Is there anywhere elsewhere this investigation is taking place?

SLATER: We have secured the scene and we're getting it through the logical investigative steps at this point as far as --

(CROSSTALK)

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: You had said you don't -- you had said you don't think this is an assassination attempt and yet it would appear that members of Congress were targeted.

SLATER: No, I did not say that. What I said is that we are not sure at this moment. It's still early on in the investigation and we're working through it.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Is he a local man or is he from elsewhere?

SLATER: Do not know yet.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Don't know even if he's from the region?

SLATER: No, ma'am.

(CROSSTALK)

SLATER: Say it again?

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Do you know if the suspect approached lawmakers in the parking lot and asked whether or not they were Republican or Democrat?

[10:40:05] SLATER: I am not aware of that, no, ma'am.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Sir, you had said earlier that it wasn't an assassination attempt. Can you just clarify for us? Was this or was this not --

SLATER: OK. I will. If I said that, I misspoke. It's too early in the investigation to say one way or the other.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Can you confirm the appearance that there are some reports that he had white hair or dark hair? Can you tell us what (INAUDIBLE)? What he looks like?

SLATER: No, I am not aware of what his appearance looks like.

(CROSSTALK)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK. Just the last couple of question.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Given the fact you've laid out, obviously how much you don't know at this point, how much you're investigating.

SLATER: Right.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: How, with all due respect, can you and the chief and the governors say that -- if you don't know, that the community is safe and this area is safe, how can you rule out, sir, that there is not a broader threat situation? SLATER: From the early on in the investigation, where we are right

now, we think we have a really good handle on it. We just want to run out a couple of details before we confirm other additional stuff. Fair enough?

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Can you confirm the weapon and whether there was more than one?

SLATER: I cannot. No, ma'am.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Can we ask the Capitol Hill police chief --

(CROSSTALK)

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: -- weapon it was?

SLATER: I do not know the kind of weapon.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Can we ask the Capitol Hill police chief, sir? Can we get an update on your officers who engaged the suspect? We understand that they were wounded in the line of duty? Can you give us an update on how they're doing?

VERDEROSA: Surely, yes. They're being treated at a local hospital and the injuries do not appear to be life-threatening at this point.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Did you say good condition when you listed their condition, sir?

VERDEROSA: I would categorize, from what I've been informed, that they're in good condition.

(CROSSTALK)

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: And can you describe what they did? How they engaged the suspect?

VERDEROSA: We received reports of gunfire through our communications. And then we coordinated with the Alexandria Police so obviously from the early instance of this incident it was shots were fired.

(CROSSTALK)

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: And your officers engaged the suspect, yes?

VERDEROSA: That's my understanding.

(CROSSTALK)

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Where were your officers at when they started firing on the gunmen? Were they in the field --

VERDEROSA: We're not -- it's just really too preliminary to go into the details of the investigation. Suffice it to say that our officers acted, I believe, heroically today, and they're in good condition and we look for a rapid recovery. So -- with that said I'll turn it back over to --

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: One office, male, one female, is that correct?

VERDEROSA: I'm not going to comment on the names, numbers, until I'm reasonably sure that the next of kin are notified.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Absolutely.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: What about the investigation that tells you anything about the motivation here and whether it was political?

VERDEROSA: We're not going to go into any kind of motivation. Much too preliminary in the investigation.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: But any indication of who he shot, what he was doing? There was some --

VERDEROSA: Again, it's too early on. When the facts come to light we'll share what we can share.

(CROSSTALK)

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Was the fifth person the victim or was the fifth person the shooter?

SLATER: We are not going to comment on that. Like the chief said it's significantly early. And so --

(CROSSTALK)

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Are there four victims or five victims?

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: -- injured was the shooter. Is that correct?

SLATER: I am not going to confirm that.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: But you can confirm that there were five people injured?

SLATER: I'm not going to confirm that either.

(CROSSTALK)

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Chief, you said that earlier. Is that wrong?

BROWN: There were five people transported by public emergency medical personnel to hospitals.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Was the suspect one of them?

BROWN: I'm not going to comment on that. That's an ongoing investigation issue, but let me comment to the question about the safe community piece. We have several things going on. The police department, after we secured the scene here, did an awful lot of work in the community. We walked in community. We looked for secondary issues. We brought in additional resources and assets so that we could deal with any possible secondary thing.

The question that was directed about the investigation if, in fact, it reveals something else then we will certainly respond to that, but right now every indication in this city is that this is an isolated incident, but the investigation will indeed be long term. And let me also do a thank you to the agencies that assisted us and as we canvassed the neighborhoods and looked around the community to make sure this was safe and that would include the Virginia State Police and the Alexandria Sheriff's Office and a lot of folks even in the neighborhood came out to kind of make sure that we were doing the right thing.

(CROSSTALK)

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Were there other minor injuries?

BROWN: There were five people transported by -- I won't go into that.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: -- being reported if we don't --

BROWN: Well, I can't speak to the information that others are reporting. Five people were transferred.

(CROSSTALK)

BROWN: I can't speak to that. I'll refer to the FBI on that.

(CROSSTALK)

STARR: Can I ask you, from your point of view, on a broader level of your knowledge about the national capital area, your view about the safety of the areas? Did you have any information prior? Did any of the investigatory agencies that there might be a threat in this area, there might be a threat to Congress? How satisfied are you now as you stand here that you have a handle on what happened here and that there is no additional threat in Washington?

[10:45:02] MCAULIFFE: I can tell you from the Virginia's perspective, from my secretary of public safety, Brian Moran, who is here with me, and VDM, we had no prior information we believe that anything like this was going to occur.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Governor, in general, do you think anything more needs to do to protect politicians?

MCAULIFFE: Well, let me say this, I think we need to do more to protect all of our citizens. I have long advocated, this is not what today is about. But there are too many guns on the street. We lose 93 million Americans a day to gun violence. I mean, I have long talked about this. Background checks, shutting down gun show loopholes, and that's not for today's discussion. But it's not just about politicians. We worry about this every day for all of our citizens.

(CROSSTALK) UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: If it's not the day for, why are you bringing it up? People are going to criticize that you're bringing up gun control at this time?

MCAULIFFE: Well, I talk about this every single day. This is a very serious issue. You know, I just came with Colonel Flarty recently. You know, we just buried one of our great state troopers, a special agent, with a wife and three young children, needless and senseless. So I've got to look at this. But I'm not going to get anywhere near the investigation, the FBI is leading this. But this obviously, with 93 million people a day is just something --

(CROSSTALK)

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Sir, just checking, 93 million is a big number. Did you mean to say 93 million? That's a big number. Are you sure about that?

MCAULIFFE: 93 million -- 93 individuals a day.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: 93 individuals a day.

MCAULIFFE: Yes, a day.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: How confident are you there aren't any other --

(CROSSTALK)

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: How confident are you this is a one and only and there couldn't be other --

MCAULIFFE: I can just say from Virginia's perspective, we monitor all of this, we have no threats before, we're not concurring looking at that, as it relates to this incident, this is totally up to the FBI and local law enforcement.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Sir, there is so much acrimony right now on the political discourse and dialogue in this country. There's so much back and forth and venomous discussion. Are you concerned that that climate in any way contributed to what we saw today? Or do you have thoughts about the climate we're in?

MCAULIFFE: I can't answer on today. The investigation is going on. I do think things have become very partisan, very hardened in this country today. We've got to being to work together to get things done. We're the greatest nation on earth. And there has been too much I believe raw discourse in this country together that's pulling people apart. It's general and we need to work together. To bring people together, to work together.

As governor, I worry about economic development, education, transportation, basic things that people here in Virginia want and that's what we need to focus our energies on.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Thank you. (CROSSTALK)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We do not have another briefing scheduled at this time. However, we will be communicating with the media to let you know. We will be providing another update later this afternoon. So --

BLITZER: All right. So there you have it. They'll have another update, you just heard, later this afternoon.

I want to quickly go to Brianna Keilar up on Capitol Hill.

Brianna, you have a guest with you, Representative Rodney Davis of Illinois. I take it, he was at that baseball practice?

KEILAR: He was at bat when the shooting happened, actually. This is Congressman Rodney Davis. You represent the 13th District of Illinois, I believe, right, central and southwestern Illinois. Tell us what happened. You were actually at bat when this happened.

REP. RODNEY DAVIS (R), ILLINOIS: I was batting. We heard a loud noise, felt like a construction site, somebody dropped a big piece of metal, and then the next thing I remember is somebody on the field yelling run, he's got a gun. I ran into the dugout like most people on the field.

KEILAR: The first base side dugout?

DAVIS: First base side dugout. And then eventually worked my way out of the dugout to other cover, and disperse. And I got to witness the heroism of the Capitol Police that were there. It was part of Steve Scalise's detail. If they wouldn't have been there this would have been a massacre of innocent people.

KEILAR: They were only there because Steve Scalise is on the team, right?

DAVIS: Ironically, yes. And our thoughts and prayers go out to my good friend Steve Scalise and also the staffers and former staffers who were shot, too, and the Capitol Police who were shot.

KEILAR: How long do you think that you were hunkered down in the first base dugout?

DAVIS: I wasn't there long because by the time I got there from home plate, I was on top of a couple of people. Didn't think that was the best place to be with an open dugout, and I immediately tried to get out of there.

KEILAR: So what our viewers cannot see is that you have a bloodied elbow and a bloodied hand. Obviously, there was quite a raucous as you were trying to get cover. So you get out of the dugout, and then where did you hid? Behind it? Did you try to go for some -- what kind of cover did you try to go for?

DAVIS: Yes. A lot of us went out behind the dugout. Took cover behind the building. Eventually when it seemed like there was a break in activity, I and others, we dispersed up into the street and across the street to take cover behind cars and then when someone yelled the gunman is just coming around the corner we took off down the street and a Good Samaritan let us into his apartment so that we could call 911 and then also called my family.

KEILAR: So this is -- this sounds like minutes that have gone by as you describe.

DAVIS: Well, I'm not that fast. So we'll wait to see what the final report is, but -- yes.

KEILAR: OK. So you're -- initially you take cover in the first base side dugout.

[10:50:05] You believe that the shooting was coming from the third base side but obviously all of this is happening so quickly, it's not like you were able to get a look at the gunman, right?

DAVIS: Yes. I'm not able to look when I'm run away from gun fire, but from talking to some of my colleagues, yes. It was on the third base side firing from there.

But let me tell you, this hatefulness that we see in this country today over policy differences has got to stop.

KEILAR: You feel like -- you feel like some of the rhetoric and heightened rhetoric, you feel like that is to blame for this?

DAVIS: You know, we'll see, but yes. I believe that there's such a hatefulness in what we see in American politics and policy discussions right now -- and social media and the 24-hour news cycle. This has got to stop. We can be -- we can disagree on how to govern. That's what makes our country great, but I'm here because we're all Americans. And I think Republicans and Democrats need to use this day today to stand together and say stop. Let's work together. Let's get things done. We can have our differences, but let's not let it lead to such hate.

KEILAR: How are you feeling right now?

DAVIS: I'm angry. You know, I got back to my office after obviously staying out there for what I thought was way too long, but necessary because it was a crime scene. I've never been in one before. I went back to my office, and I took the chance to come down here because I want to talk to people about what I witnessed, and about the effect that it should have as we move forward as a country, and that's why I'm here, bloodied in my uniform still, not had a chance to go clean up because it's that important that a message gets out that the hatefulness, this political rhetoric hate and -- I would consider, we'll let the witnesses describe it, this could be the first political rhetorical terrorist act and that has to stop.

KEILAR: You are actually standing here in your baseball cleats and your baseball pants. You are in your uniform. And this is a game that is supposed to be for fun and it's supposed to be for charity and it's also a chance for Republicans and Democrats to have some good competition. Tell me about that and just what it's like to go to practices, what it's like to go to the game, and now with this having happened, just how that makes you feel about what is supposed to be really a wholesome event.

DAVIS: Well, this is an event where we raised over $600,000 for local D.C. charities and Republicans and Democrats in a partisan way come together to play a game. And we have kids in the dugouts. We have staffers and former staffers that practice with us. These aren't just members of Congress and you would think when you turn on the 24-hour news cycle that no Republican like me ever talks to a Democrat. That's just not true.

I catch in the game and you can ask every single Democrat. I jog with them. We have fun. It is a great opportunity and I never thought I'd play a baseball game for charity, go to practice at 6:30 in the morning and have to dodge bullets.

KEILAR: How does this change the game and how does this change just how members of Congress are concerned about their security?

DAVIS: Well, it has to change. This is -- this has to be the breaking point. I asked the question earlier, is this America's breaking point when it comes to the political rhetoric that's become so hateful? It's my breaking point. That's why I'm here talking to you today.

We've got to end this, we've got to stop it because I watched my friend and my fellow member Steve Scalise, lay motionless on the field, wondering if he was going to be OK. That is a picture I will never forget.

KEILAR: He is in surgery. I'm sure that you know that and you have an update.

DAVIS: I do.

KEILAR: He was able to talk to his wife so we know at least that he was, you know, awake and able to do that, and then, you know, the prognosis is good. It's a hip injury.

You do feel, though that this was targeted, right?

DAVIS: Well, I don't think it's a coincidence that no bullets were fired outside of that baseball field.

KEILAR: And so when you think about the possibility of that, is it the routine with which the practice takes place that also makes you think this wouldn't be that hard to figure out who all is in the park at this time?

DAVIS: It's not that difficult. There's plenty of press stories about how we practice, how this game is important to the local D.C. charities. We talk about it because we love the game. We never expect to have to deal with what we dealt with today when you're trying to play a baseball game for charity and that's why we've got to make this day our day when we say the political, rhetorical hate ends.

KEILAR: All right. Congressman Rodney Davis from Illinois, thank you so much for joining us here in Statuary Hall with your account. We do appreciate it.

And also important to note, Wolf, that Congressman Davis as well as other members on the team feel very strongly about continuing with the game tomorrow night. We don't know if that's going to happen but certainly there is a spirit that this game should go on and it shouldn't be called off, certainly entirely. We'll see, though, what happens.

[10:55:07] BLITZER: Yes. The game is supposed to take place at Washington Nationals Park tomorrow night. We'll see if that's postponed or if it goes ahead. Thousands of fans have been showing up over the years and presumably will tomorrow night if the game occurs or if it's postponed.

Brianna, we're going to get back to you. I want to go to our national correspondent Ryan Nobles right now. He's also up on Capitol Hill. You had a chance, Ryan, I understand to catch up with Senator Flake of Arizona. He's a member of the Republican team.

RYAN NOBLES, CNN WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT: Yes, that's right, Wolf. We were coming here to get ready for the day, to try and get the take of many of these members of Congress as to what happened this morning.

And I was coming through security on the first floor of Russell, and I heard someone in cleat walking on the floor here in Russell and I knew right away that it had to have been someone on the baseball team. I turned around and saw Senator Flake still visibly shaken. He came right from the field here to his office in the Russell Senate office building.

I did ask him to recount for me exactly what he experienced on that baseball field this morning. Take a listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

REP. JEFF FLAKE (R), ARIZONA: Pretty chaotic. A gunman with a lot of rounds and people shot down and others trying to find cover. It was a long 10 or 15 minutes, let me tell you.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Did you get the sense that Congressman Scalise is going to be OK?

FLAKE: Yes. I -- as soon as the gunfire -- as soon as I heard the gunman was down we were helping a staffer with a leg wound in the dugout, and I wanted to get out to Steve. I got out there and applied pressure for a while and he was coherent. So I think he's going to be OK. He's in surgery right now.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

NOBLES: That staffer he was talking about was a staffer for Congressman Roger Williams and Congressman Williams tweeted this morning about that staffer. His name is Zack Barth and this is what the congressman said. "I now can confirm that Zack Barth was a legislative correspondent in my office, was shot this morning at baseball practice." He goes on in series of tweet to say that he's receiving medical attention and should be OK.

But, Wolf, we can't stress enough just how unsettling the scene here is on Capitol Hill. Senator Flake had yet to take off his cleats from the baseball field that morning. In fact, in the middle of our interview he stopped to take off those baseball shoes because he hadn't been able to even stop for a moment and wrap his mind around what happened this morning.

He was incredibly poised, I have to say and it's clear that many of these members of Congress as you saw in Brianna's interview are just not exactly sure how to handle what happened here today and how they planned to address it going forward. Wolf?

KEILAR: Very, very, very, very sad. Ryan Nobles up on Capitol Hill, the shock is only beginning to unfold.

Joe Giacalone is us. He's the law enforcement trainer, former NYPD sergeant.

Because a federal official, a member of Congress, the number three Republican and the number three leader in the House of Representatives Steve Scalise, the majority whip was shot and the FBI now is in charge but the FBI will get a lot of help from ATF, local law enforcement, state law enforcement and other agencies, right?

JOSEPH GIACALONE, LAW ENFORCEMENT TRAINER: Absolutely yes. They all need to work and this is a collaborative effort. The FBI needs their local partners to be able to do certain law enforcement work within the public and what happens now is, you know, the FBI has a lot of assets and a lot of things that they can be used to be to bring to -- in an investigation like this. So everybody works kind of cooperatively in these types of investigation because we want to make sure that the public is safe.

And we heard him saying, you know, more than once that the public is safe so to me that means that's kind of cop speak for this is a sole individual that was responsible for this and that they are going to be, you know, looking into what else it is. I mentioned earlier about those vehicle so they found that now. And next will be his house or apartment, they'll be able to look into that. And like I said, we're going to see what he's posted online. He might have posted a manifesto.

And one thing, Wolf, as I don't believe in coincidences. You know. And no cop will say they believe in coincidences. I think this was -- these Republicans were targeted because of who they were and what they represented and I think that's -- you know, I think we can just get that out of the way but the issue it comes down to is to make sure that this doesn't happen again.

And they need to look at their security, Wolf. I mean, they only have two police officers there when you have about 30 different members of the Senate and Congress. I think that's kind of outrageous. I think they need to be able to do a better job with that.

BLITZER: All right, Joe. Stand by. We're going to continue our special coverage. We've just been told that President Trump will make a statement in about a half an hour or so from now, 11:30 a.m. Eastern. We'll of course have live coverage of that, all of the breaking news.

That's it from me at least for now. "AT THIS HOUR" with Kate Bolduan and Brianna Keilar starts right now.

ANNOUNCER: This is CNN breaking news.

KATE BOLDUAN, CNN ANCHOR: Hello, everyone. I'm Kate Bolduan.