Return to Transcripts main page
Active Shooter At Capital Gazette Newspaper Building In Annapolis; CNN: Multiple People Injured At Capital Gazette Shooting. Aired 3:30-4p ET
Aired June 28, 2018 - 15:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
JOSH CAMPBELL, CNN LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: That's right. It's very telling. As we were talking about earlier, you look at the posture of the police, they're not surging into the building. You don't see the influx or inflow of additional emergency vehicles. So that is telling.
It appears as, though, they don't see the threat continuing it, but they are going to do their due diligence going into the building. I can say, you know, as we all know, an active shooter situation is considered an active shooter until it's not. Until police are completely confident that there is no additional threat and that requires actually going through that building.
As we listened to Lieutenant Frashure there, public information officer, one thing he alluded to -- important for us all to remember as we look at these pictures and we look at the amount of time it's going to take to go through this is when you're in a situation where you have an office building, people that are milling about that are moving around. 2 If you're going to evacuate, you're going to have items left behind, bags, people dropping whatever they're doing in order to exit the building. When police show up, they have to make sure that those aren't -- those don't contain devices, that they aren't incendiary in and of themselves, which is what you heard Lieutenant Frasier saying there.
That they're going to have to make sure there aren't, you know, any additional threats that they have to look at. So, all that's going to take time. We're going to see that come through.
One thing also is we'll continue to learn, and he wasn't ready or prepared to say where exactly in the building that took place. We don't yet know if the building was exclusively this newspaper or if there were other offices in there, as well. It's going to be far too early to determine the motive or what the target was until those additional details come out.
ANA CABRERA, CNN ANCHOR: Again, so much we don't know. I want to update our viewers. We do know that they are responding, law enforcement is responding to what they're calling an active shooter situation at the building which we believe houses the "Capital Gazette," a newspaper in Annapolis, Maryland, that's also owned by "Baltimore Sun" Media's company.
"Baltimore Sun" Media reporting multiple people may be shot. Again, waiting for confirmation from law enforcement on any numbers regarding injured or deceased and whether there's anybody specifically in custody at this time.
We do have some more information that the FBI and ATF are both responding. Tom Fuentes, the fact federal officials are moving in, does that provide information as to what may have happened?
TOM FUENTES, CNN SENIOR LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: Not really. It just says that for now the local police are in charge. There's no indication that this is terrorism yet. There is no indication of it being organized crime or some other type of crime that would trigger federal jurisdiction.
However, all of the police agencies have mutual assistance. You would have the FBI and ATF and all the other law enforcement in the Annapolis are, which means also the greater Washington, D.C., area would be providing resources to help the local police in all the efforts that they have.
Interviewing people, searching the building, including every closet and every nook and cranny to see if there's anybody else hiding, whether good or bad guy. It takes a lot of resources to do that.
You have a crime scene that requires laboratory technicians, evidence experts to work that, to do the forensic investigation. Yes, they would -- the FBI would respond, ATF, other agencies, state police, local agencies, county police. That would all be providing assistance to the local agency that actually has the main jurisdiction.
CABRERA: We have another update from Anne Arundel Police in Maryland confirming active shooter at 888 Bestgate Road in Annapolis. They tweet, but they also write "building evacuated. Officers continuing to search building. Relocation point is inside Lord & Taylor in the mall."
So, Josh Campbell, it sounds like the building is evacuated according to the tweet from Anne Arundel Police. If that is the case, what happens next in this investigation?
CAMPBELL: So that's one in a series of steps that police will have to take now. Obviously the first being to determine is there a threat, is there additional, any type of threat to life, something that they're going to look at.
Second, getting everyone out of the building which is sounds like they've done. As Tom was mentioning, they have to go through the building, top to bottom, from end to end, in order to ensure that there are no threats, in order to ensure there aren't additional wounded people who were attempting to flee.
But this is something that they do. They practice for it methodically. If you think about how law enforcement approaches these municipal-type situations where you have an office building, it's very much similar to the fire department.
So, the fire department, they understand the mapping of a building, where the stand pipes are, the sprinklers, that kind of thing. The access to the schematics of the building are going to be readily available to law 2enforcement. They'll know what the building entails in short order.
It's a matter of going through that to ensure they do the top-to- bottom search before they give the all clear, before they give the thumbs up. Then the investigation will continue after that. We see the pointy end of the spear right now.
But law enforcement showing up and going and clearing the building. But once they determine who is the subject or subjects, that's when the additional part of the investigation that they are going to have to then launch once they determine why did the person target this target this particular location.
As we mentioned earlier, you know, all these people that are evacuating the building are potential sources of information and they are going conduct witness interviews to determine who this person is.
[15:35:11] I would imagine that -- you know, and again, it's very early. There's a lot we don't know, I imagine they are going to find out in short order who this person was based on the CCTV and witness statements.
There have been outliers. If you recall recently in California, there was that YouTube shooting which was this bizarre incident with the very deranged person. It took some time in order to determine who they were because they had no association.
So, that's always a factor. But again, that's all going to be part of the investigation to determine is this someone who knew what they were doing, or it was a random event.
CABRERA: OK. I want to go back to Evan Perez. Evan, I understand you have some new information?
EVAN PEREZ, CNN JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: That's right, Ana. I'm told by a law enforcement source that there have been people who were wounded in this active shooting. The police there still calling it an active shooting.
But as Josh and I think tom have both referred to the pictures, you see police coming out, police standing back. That means that they believe they've contained the situation. They're not saying it yet. They're still calling this an active shooter situation.
But it is clear that they believe that perhaps they have moved into a stage where they at least control the situation. I'm told by a law enforcement source that it appears they have somebody in custody who may believe may have carried out the shooting.
Again, there's a lot of investigative work that needs to be done. We don't know if the person in custody is the person who carried out the shooting, but at least at this point the law enforcement people on the scene there believe they have the person contained who carried out the shooting.
We don't know the status of that person, whether that person was shot or whether that person may have taken matters into their own hands. It appears they believe they've contained the situation.
And this is why perhaps if you look -- if the viewers are looking at the picture, looking at police, not necessarily ac acting? A more active manner it tells -- acting in a more active manner it tells us more what the stage of the situation is at this point.
Again, law enforcement there have not really given an official comment or official statement, update of what exactly has happened. We're told by people familiar with the early stages of the investigation that there are some people who were injured or wounded in the shooting in the building that houses the "Capital Gazette" newspaper.
We don't know exactly where in the building this shooting took place. There's reason to believe that it affected the newsroom of the newspaper. That's the information law enforcement is going on.
They're obviously going office by office, room by room, floor by floor, in this office building to make sure they get to every single corner and find who may have been responsible for this at this point. They believe that they have isolated the person.
They've taken the person into custody. The threat for now appears to be over. Again, there's a lot of work that they need to complete here. Again, they believe there's multiple injuries, multiple wounded. There may be some fatalities. When we hear from law enforcement, there may be some fatalities that we hear about. But at this point, they believe that the situation is contained.
CABRERA: We are getting word that the president as well as the first lady both at separate locations today, the president in Milwaukee, the first lady currently in Arizona, they both have been briefed on this shooting.
Again, happening in Annapolis, Maryland, at the "Capital Gazette" newspaper building where we are continuing to monitor live images in our affiliate, WJLA. We see law enforcement on scene, crime scene tape-up.
And now confirmation, according to Evan Perez, that one person is in custody in what police are saying is an active shooter situation. No word or confirmation on how many if any are injured.
Early reports are that multiple people may have been shot. The police there, Anne Arundel Police saying that they have now evacuated the building, but the search continues through the building.
Brian Stelter, you are still with us. This is the "Capital Gazette" newspaper, relatively small newspaper, right? What kind of security would be there? BRIAN STELTER, CNN SENIOR MEDIA CORRESPONDENT (via telephone): There would have been low or no security. That's important as we talk about this, Ana. The "gazette" publishes multiple newspapers in and around Annapolis. It's the kind of newsroom that makes journalism great.
This covers the Maryland state government, Annapolis state house. They do it all in a relatively small, small budget. This is the kind of newspaper readers can stop by, members of the public can stop by.
The address of the office was well known to the public. We don't know if the newsroom was targeted. If it was and if journalists were killed, this will be the first time in three years that these journalists killed on assignment.
[15:40:07] You remember the WDBJ shooting in 2016 when the news crew was attacked on live tv. It is thankfully rare to see this kind of thing happen. We don't know the full context of the incident. We know it's in the rise of press against journalists in recent years.
Either way, whether random or targeted, it is causing alarms in other newsrooms. We know Police have arrived at the newsroom of "The Baltimore Sun" as a precautionary measure, just to be on scene, both because are owned by the same parent company.
CABRERA: Josh, I want to get your reaction. The president, first lady, both briefed and now Evan Perez reporting that one person is in custody.
CAMPBELL: So, first on national leadership, this is something that is standard. Obviously, officials at the White House and national security establishment will monitor ongoing developments around the country that impact the national security.
Law enforcement at various levels in order to ensure our national officials have that information and are updated even when they're on the road. The second thing with respect to the rest is interesting because in so many of these types of situations -- unfortunately there have been so many where we see either the shooter is killed by law enforcement or kills him or herself.
And depriving us all of that source of information as far as what went down and what was the motive behind it. With the person in custody, that is a potential intelligence collection platform themselves in order to provide the information with police.
t will be interesting to see was this person overwhelmed by police when they arrived, or did this person surrender? Did they come shooting and know that they would be taken into custody, or will they leave.
The second thing is, are they being cooperative with authorities. Police are going to verify whatever a subject tells them. They're not just going to simply believe them. But that will be interesting to see whether this person is indeed being cooperative, whether they're unashamed with what took place. They had something they wanted to act on and decided to do it, or if there are extenuating factors that go into why the person made the decision. That's going to be coming out in short order.
I can tell you that there's great public interest here in determining what was the motive and who was responsible. I imagine police with someone in custody, they're going to be sparse on the details that they provide.
I'm sure once they're ready to confirm there's been an arrest, that will come out. We're not going to hear details as far as the motive until the investigation takes place. There's a final factor, that is who was it in this person's orbit that may have known, seen warning signs, someone known to authorities, that will be part of the investigation, and that will take time.
CABRERA: There are so many questions. But again, we can confirm there's an active shooting situation happening in Annapolis, Maryland. And right now, we understand one person is in custody. The building where this happened is the "Capital Gazette" building, a daily newspaper there, been around since 1884. Owned by "Baltimore Sun" media. Circulation, somewhere around 30,274 daily, a little bit more on weekends.
We're seeing a tweet from the Maryland governor, Larry Hogan, saying absolutely devastated to learn of this tragedy in Annapolis. I am in contact with County Executive Steve Shuh and the Maryland police on scene assisting the police, the local police.
He says in his -- he says to please heed all warnings and stay away from the area. Praying for those at the scene and for our community.
Sol I want to bring in Juliette Kayyem, former Homeland Security joining us on the phone. Juliette, again, still little known on how many people may be involved and who may have been the perpetrator here. What stands out to you?
JULIETTE KAYYEM, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST (via telephone): Well, I will put good news on this that the perpetrator is captive. That's going to give a lot of information. The question now, I think the $64,000 question because it will have implications about whether this is local or a national story is, who is the perpetrator, and what motivated him, was it personal, was a former employee, was he a boyfriend or friend of someone?
Is there a personal grievance that led to this? We've seen that before. This could be workplace violence. We've seen that before. The second question or the alternative is this the use of, you know, violence to make a larger statement about the media today.
You know, I'll go straight to the jugular -- you know, there is a lot of political atmospherics coming from -- in the discourse that is, you know, targeted against fake news and the media, and particular reporters. I do not know right now, and so we should not get ahead of the story at all, about which of those two alternatives. But the consequences of what the answer is, right, is it personal or something larger, are going to have different ripple effects. If it was the workplace violence, you have a contained incident. You prosecute, you protect the victims.
If you have something bigger, then I think other newsrooms are going to have to take caution. We'll have to have a serious discussion about how we treat the media, how the media is discussed.
[15:45:11] obviously, once again, Ana, stay tuned. This is, you know, we don't know yet. But that's what stands out to me. That is for me the pivotal moment, the pivotal question now.
CABRERA: Obviously, things are happening fast and furious on the ground there. Yet the information is just trickling our way. We only know this is an active shooter situation happening at the scene of a newspaper building. This is the "Capital Gazette" in Annapolis, Maryland.
Our affiliates providing these aerial pictures for us at the scene of law enforcement moving in. We've seen several people come out with their hands up and the local police departments tweeting that the building is still being searched.
They believe they have evacuated the building, telling people where they can go to reunite with some loved ones. Charles Ramsey is a former D.C. police chief, joining us on the phone.
And Chief Ramsey, when you hear what we're learning in this situation and are looking at the images and knowing this is happening at a newspaper, at a media company, what are your thoughts?
CHARLES RAMSEY, FORMER WASHINGTON, D.C. POLICE CHIEF (via telephone): Well, first let me apologize. I'm actually at the airport to board a flight. I apologize for the noise. It's too early to tell exactly what's going on. I heard Juliette mention -- we don't know if this is workplace violence, if this is some disgruntled individual with a beef against the media. We don't know yet.
I would be reluctant to draw too many conclusions. But anytime something like this happens it's very troublesome. Right now, the police are going through the entire building. They have to, floor by floor, room by room, looking to see if there are any injured people, if there's anyone else who may be involved.
Word is possibly they have one person in custody. Don't know if that's true or not. Maybe more than one person involved. You're at the very early stages right now. They have to clear the building.
Information will be trickling out because they want to try to get a handle on what it is that's going on. I'm sure that they will try to get as much information out as possible as soon as they can.
Right now, this is very early on in this. We don't know what the heck is going on other than the fact that apparently you do have a situation where you have people wounded as a result of an active shooter.
CABRERA: And yet, we don't have that confirmed. Does it surprise you that they haven't confirmed if there are any people wounded?
CABRERA: We only have reports from reporters connected to the same media company that there were multiple people --
RAMSEY: Yes, again, all that -- and I've been in situations where you try to get as much information out as possible. But the reality is that the first bit of information you get in a situation like that usually doesn't stand up very long because the conditions change pretty rapidly.
So, every bit of information you get, you have to be very careful until we're able to actually confirm things, whether or not people have been injured, have they been killed, one person in custody, was it the employee, not an employee, there will be a lot of unanswered questions right now. Those questions will be answered as soon as they can be.
CABRERA: OK. We're going to continue to stay on top of this breaking news as we monitor several breaking news situations right now from this ongoing active shooter situation in Annapolis, Maryland.
There's ongoing hearings on Capitol hill now involving the FBI director, Christopher Wray, as well as Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. Contentious at times. And then protests from D.C. to Wisconsin to Texas over the president's immigration policies of zero tolerance and what's happening at the border with family separations. Our special coverage continues now with Jake Tapper in Washington, D.C.
JAKE TAPPER, CNN ANCHOR: Welcome to THE LEAD. I'm Jake Tapper. We are following breaking news -- police say that there is an active shooter situation at the offices of the "Capital Gazette" newspaper in Annapolis, Maryland.
A law enforcement source telling CNN that multiple individuals at the "Capital Gazette" have been injured. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms has tweeted that they are responding to a shooting incident at that same location.
President Trump and First Lady Melania Trump have been briefed about the situation. Maryland Governor Larry Hogan has tweeted warning people to stay away from the area. Stay away from the building in Annapolis where this active shooter situation is still ongoing.
CNN's Evan Perez has been talking to his sources. Evan, apparently, you've learned one person is in custody?
PEREZ: That's right, Jake. We're told by law enforcement sources that at least they believe that the person is the one that carried out the shooting but still very early in the investigation. [15:50:01] And so, they are going room by room, floor by floor by in that building to make sure that there's nobody else who may have been involved. They believed that they found the shooter and that person is in custody by law enforcement.
We're told that there are multiple people who have been wounded. There are multiple casualties there at the scene inside the newsroom of "Capital Gazette" newspaper and they believe that includes some fatalities.
So again, multiple wounded including some fatalities inside the newsroom of this small newspaper there in Annapolis. Again, this is very early from the information from the scene there. Law enforcement is still obviously trying to figure out exactly -- get control of the situation.
You can see from the pictures some people are being led out of building. Clearly, they believe it's safe enough to bring the people out. That helps underscore the likelihood that they believe they have got some control of the situation but again they have to make sure that there's nobody else in the building who may have had something to do with this.
But it does tell us that they believe they've got some control of the situation. Multiple people wounded and at least some fatalities.
TAPPER: There's also obviously a difference when law enforcement says casualties. They don't necessarily mean fatalities. Your sources are telling you specifically in addition to casualties there are fatalities, plural?
PEREZ: Right. Right. Exactly. In addition to the casualties, people who are wounded, may have been shot, may have been injured trying to flee the scene, but there are people who were shot and killed as a result of this.
TAPPER: Let me bring in Josh Campbell, former FBI supervisory special agent. Josh, the newspaper, "Capital Gazette," has been around for I think around a century and a half or so. It is a community newspaper, well respected in Annapolis. We don't know yet whether this is a situation based on some sort of workplace violence or whether this is animus towards the media or what. What would the FBI be doing to try to ascertain motive in this situation?
CAMPBELL: You're spot on, Jake. It's too soon to determine what took place and who was targeted. We have a building with people in it that worked and there was a shooting and, again, all that we know.
With respect to the FBI and law enforcement, right now this would be an investigation that's being run by the locals. We saw a public information officer from Anne Arundel County with an update there in Annapolis.
Federal authorities providing resources and although there's not much that we can tell right of what's going on inside the building. We can tell a lot by the posture outside. We don't see law enforcement officers surging into the building.
We don't see a continued inflow of emergency vehicles. There was a mobile command center arriving very slowly which tells you as we look at that the situation appears to have been resolved and moving to the investigation.
With reports that someone was taken into custody, that person will be a gold mine of intelligence and many times the shooter is killed or killed themselves. Now the officers will be working to determine why was the person there? Why did they do what they did?
And then looking at the images of people exiting the building every one of those people is potential witness and law enforcement officers conduct the interviews to tell what they saw, heard. All that in order to fill out what took place.
TAPPER: The Anne Arundel County, the county where Annapolis is, the police tweeted this is an active shooter situation and has not said it's over yet, have they?
CAMPBELL: They haven't. We talk about terminology. Active shooter situation until the police tell us it's not and you know, what's going on we can guarantee is a law enforcement officer will be searching that building top to bottom to determine there aren't additional threats and not additional victims.
Obviously, these types of situations, people that hear gun fire, they flee. Do they hide in a closet or another office, could there be out there, highly unlikely, that may have been involved?
So that will all be part of this coordinated effort to go surge the building top to bottom and law enforcement officers will ensure that they are 100 percent certain that there was no additional threat or casualties or injuries before they send out the all clear.
TAPPER: Let me bring in CNN Law Enforcement Analyst, James Gagliano on the phone. James, if you could talk about the active shooter situation. What does that mean for the local police or ATF or FBI as they come to the scene? What do they do to make sure that this one individual in custody is the only individual responsible for the shooting?
JAMES GAGLIANO, CNN LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST (via telephone): Well, Jake, that's the number one concern for law enforcement. If you have one person in custody, one person down, to make certain that there aren't other bad actors involved because the first piece of this is crisis resolution.
We have to stop the bad guys, the bad people from doing those things. And then we move into the next piece which is consequence management or working on the investigative piece of this. That's number one thing.
[15:55:02] I can tell you from being around the country and talking in front of the law enforcement audiences about this very topic, how to deal with active shooter situations, this is something that police departments are taking very, very, very seriously.
There are approximately 1.2 million law enforcement officers in this country. And if you don't think that police departments around the country and around the globe are not looking at this very hard right now and trying to figure a way with limited resources to deal with these types of circumstances.
It's happening in Texas, Georgia, happening in Florida, happening in the D.C. area, Belgium, happening around the globe, and what law enforcement has got to understand, we have got to move away from this paradigm of contain and negotiate.
The first thing that we have to do is we have to go to the sound of the guns. There are no more scenarios of recent where folks are looking to take hostages and negotiate their way out. They're looking to cause damage and in the situation like this, I heard Juliette speak to it earlier.
We don't know the motivations here and want to be careful. We don't want to jump to assumptions. Obviously, this is a media outlet. Obviously, this is a place where news is generated, and news is reported on, but we have to be careful.
Motivations are important for law enforcement because it helps us prevent the next one and it helps us disassemble what might have taken place and helps us bring the investigation to a conclusion.
But right now, the first thing first is to make sure people are safe and then the next thing to move into the investigative portion and try to figure out what motivated somebody to do what they did.
TAPPER: Also, joining me on the phone right now is CNN Law Enforcement Analyst, Jonathan Wackrow. Jonathan, how do police go about searching a building like this? Obviously, it's not a small building.
JONATHAN WACKROW, CNN LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST (via telephone): No. It's absolutely not. It's over 130,000 square feet in space. It is a professional services building. Yes, it does house "Capital Gazette" and other businesses that were located within this building.
To Jim's point earlier, law enforcement, immediate response by law enforcement, is to put that threat down. Go to the sound of the gun fire. Address the threat and ensure that the immediacy of the threat is done, they have to ascertain, is there anything else to do?
The methodical search of each suite, every floor, closet, HVAC system, everything, will take time. So, this is an active investigation that's going on right now. It's still dynamic. Remember, this building, 888 Sgate across from the Anne Arundel Medical and it's in between the Annapolis mall, heavily populated area.
Law enforcements want to make sure that the public in the area secure, no secondary attempts so this is still a very dynamic situation within the area. As you can see from some of the footage. Law enforcement at this site may be taking a more reduced posture. Anne Arundel PD probably in the vicinity securing the area beefing up all of these key location around this site.
TAPPER: This just in to CNN, one patient received at the University of Maryland Medical Center from this Annapolis shooting. The active shooter situation still going on. That's according to the director of media relations for the hospital. No other information on the patient is available at this time. We don't know the extent of the injuries, the age or the gender of the individual.
I want to bring in CNN's Jessica Schneider. Jessica, as is not uncommon for journalists, a lot of us first learned about the shooting because an intern at "Capital Gazette" tweeting information out and the crime reporter for the "Capital Gazette" also tweeting about the incident. Phil Davis, I believe is his name. What is he saying?
JESSICA SCHNEIDER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: That's exactly right, Jake. As, we are seeing these pictures outside, Phil Davis, one of the reporters there at "Capital Gazette" is giving us an inside look at the newsroom via Twitter.
Phil Davis, the courts and crime reporter there at the "Capital Gazette," he is tweeting out to give a bit of insight of what's happening inside the newsroom. Let's read the tweets.
The first one says, "Gunman shot through the glass door to the office and opened fire on multiple employees. Can't say much more and don't want to declare anyone dead. But it's bad."
Phil Davis also tweeting a second tweet saying, "There is nothing more terrifying than hearing multiple people get shot while you're under your desk and then hear the gunman reload."
So terrifying descriptions of what had happened inside the newsroom there. Two tweets from the courts and crime reporter who is inside that newsroom when this gunman opened fire. This reporter describing exactly what happened.