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NEW DAY SUNDAY
Mass Shooting in El Paso Shopping Center; Mass Shooting in Dayton, Ohio, Nine Dead, 16 Injured. Aired 5-6a ET
Aired August 4, 2019 - 05:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (voice-over): This is CNN breaking news.
VICTOR BLACKWELL, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning. We're starting NEW DAY an hour earlier. I'm Victor Blackwell in El Paso, Texas, outside of a massive crime scene here, where 20 people were killed, 26 were injured. There's a lot happening here, as this investigation is just beginning. But there has been another mass shooting.
Christi, to you.
CHRISTI PAUL, CNN ANCHOR: I'm Christi Paul. Victor, thank you.
We went to sleep with the news of those 20 people dead in El Paso. You're waking up now, I'm so sorry to tell you, to nine more people who have been killed in a second mass shooting. This time, Dayton, Ohio. Between these two shootings, 29 people are dead, 42 people are injured in a 15-hour time span and two mass shootings.
We want to get you back to Victor but want to get you the latest on what happened in Dayton. Here's the latest on this overnight shooting.
LIEUTENANT COLONEL MATT CARPER, CHIEF OF POLICE, DAYTON: I'm Lieutenant Colonel Matt Carper, assistant chief of police. Just after 1 o'clock this morning, we have an active shooter situation, in the Oregon district, part of our downtown area. We had one shooter that we're aware of and multiple victims.
Right now, the shooter is deceased from gunshot wounds from responding officers. We have nine victims deceased in addition to that. We have 16 more victims hospitalized right now in unknown conditions.
We're working on identifying the suspect, to see what the possible motivation might have been. We do not have that yet. The suspect was carryings a long gun with multiple rounds, at the victims.
We are currently opening up the convention center. Information for family members and friends, if they have questions about the status of anybody who might have been involved or if they have information to provide. We have a dedicated phone line. The number is 225-6217. Anybody has information regarding this incident or if they have questions about the status of their loved ones, please call that number.
We have the FBI on scene. We are conducting the investigation. FBI is on scene as well, to provide any necessary resources. Initially, we had multiple jurisdictions responding to assist the police department in handling this incident.
Fortunately, we had officers already on scene in the Oregon district, providing patrol. This is a very safe part of downtown. It's a very popular destination for visitors in the Oregon district.
So we regularly have officers in the area. Fortunately, we had multiple officers in the immediate vicinity, where this incident started. There's a very short timeline of violence. For that, we're fortunate. It's a tragic incident. We're doing everything we can to investigate it and try to identify the motivation behind this.
With that, I can try to answer a few questions.
QUESTION: Do we know when this may have started, around Ned Peppers?
CARPER: It started in the 400 block of East Fifth Street. This was all an exterior event. It all occurred outside.
QUESTION: Any description of the shooter you can share?
CARPER: Not yet. The shooter is deceased. You know, we still -- we're still interviewing, obviously, a lot of witnesses, as well as officers, to try to determine if anybody else was involved.
QUESTION: What type of weapon was used?
CARPER: It was a long gun.
QUESTION: There was one shooter?
CARPER: That we know of right now. There's always a possibility that more people could have been involved. But that's what we're trying to identify right now.
QUESTION: Were any of the officers hurt?
CARPER: No officers were injured.
QUESTION: What is the age range of the victims?
CARPER: I can't tell you that right now. The coroner's office has a lot of resources on scene. Obviously, this is a very taxing event for resources, for the police department, fire department, medic's office, coroner's office. But we have a lot of help from the mother agencies' organizations.
There were 21 medic units that responded to this incident.
QUESTION: Was it a Dayton police officer that took down the shooter?
CARPER: Multiple Dayton police officers.
QUESTION: How much time elapsed between the time the shooting started and he was engaged by the officers?
CARPER: I will be able to get you more information. We will have a follow-up news briefing probably tomorrow. I can't give you an exact date and time. But it will likely be late tomorrow, where we can provide additional information. I can tell you it is a very short timeline of violence.
QUESTION: How long do you expect to be on scene tonight?
CARPER: Throughout the night and morning.
QUESTION: You said roughly 16, at least 16?
CARPER: Yes, nine dead plus the suspect, 10 dead and 16 that we're aware of hospitalized
Yes. Nine dead, plus the suspect, 10 dead. And 16 that we're aware of, hospitalized, in unknown condition right now.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (INAUDIBLE). We have set up a family assistance center at the convention center. We'll give you a telephone number when we can get that. That way family members can call to find out if their loved ones were involved and get the status of who was transported to each hospital.
QUESTION: Is there any remaining threat to the public?
CARPER: Not that we're aware of. The incident was resolved in a very short period of time. And the investigation will continue through the night. And we'll go wherever it leads us. Obviously, we're investigating the possibility of more people being involved at this time. It looks like it might just be one shooter.
QUESTION: After the shooting happened, first responders go to several bars, make sure people were OK.
What did you do after the shooting?
CARPER: The initial response was, as in any active shooter response, is to respond to the threat itself, the immediate threat. That was done in a short period of time in this incident.
After that, first aid was rendered to the many victims. Obviously, first responders had a pretty busy evening tonight. But it was a county-wide request for assistance. We had assistance from a lot of different areas.
QUESTION: What is your message to the community after an event like this? CARPER: Anybody with information, please -- please give us a call to that dedicated line. Or they can always call 333-COPS, as well, for additional information. But Dayton is a very safe area. The downtown area is a very safe area. This is extremely unusual, obviously, for any community, let alone Dayton Oregon district. This is unheard of and sad. It's a very tragic evening.
And we have a lot of resources dedicated to take care of the victims, the victims' families as well as identify any other people who might have been involved or obviously, the public will be very interested to know what the motivation might have been for such a horrific incident as this. And we're anxious to discover that as well.
QUESTION: How recently has Dayton police trained for these situations, off the top of your head?
CARPER: The Dayton Police Department trains regularly for an active shooter.
CARPER: We actually have -- we have personnel within our department that train other departments nationally. So we've been training for active shooter for many, many years. Not just training Dayton police personnel but other departments as well.
So our people are very well trained for a situation like this. We're very fortunate that the officers were in close proximity and that they reacted the way they did. And as bad as this is, it could have been much, much worse, as I think everyone will become aware of here in the next -- as more information unfolds.
We're very appreciative of the officers who were on the scene and the action they took. It's a very difficult, obviously very difficult situation. They put themselves in harm's way. That's what they're here for, to protect the public.
QUESTION: You know how many shots were fired?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Everybody good?
We'll come back.
CARPER: OK. Thank you. And we will -- we'll give you more information on when we'll do a follow-up briefing; likely some time late tomorrow, I suppose.
PAUL: Our thanks to assistant police chief Matt Carper there, as he was giving us a briefing of what happened at 1:22 in the morning. Several -- a few hours ago, when they got the call that there had been an active shooting situation or there was an active shooting situation. Polo Sandoval with us now.
This is an area called the Oregon district. I understand it's an arts and entertainment district. We heard the assistant police chief say this is very safe, this downtown is very safe, that this is unheard of.
POLO SANDOVAL, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Looking to the background of this area, it's been described as this thriving arts and entertainment district, on a Saturday night. You can imagine it was packed with people. There are various restaurants and bars in that area. It's an area that had recently experienced an urban regrowth.
We're seeing police concentrated and focused on the scene, as we hear from police authorities. They were called to an active shooter situation. Now we can confirm nine people dead, in addition to the shooter, in addition to the 16 people taken to area hospitals, where their condition is unknown.
The main focus right now, of course, now that the scene has been secured, is to try to establish a motive and what has led to one of the nation's latest shooting incidents here.
The process and the procedure does mirror what we witnessed in El Paso, where police responded. Once they were able to secure the scene, now, turning this active shooter situation, now, into an active homicide investigation. That includes turning to federal authorities. We're told the FBI is on scene.
One more thing that resembles what we witnessed just a little while ago in Texas, is this push for information. You heard from one of the police officials there on the ground. Pleading with the public, if they saw anything, shot some video of the situation there, to call that number that you see on the lower portion of your screen here because they're trying to piece this investigation together. And now, an active scene that continues after shots were fired in a very popular part of Dayton, Ohio, about 1:00 this morning.
PAUL: All right. Polo Sandoval, we appreciate it so much.
Want to bring in Josh Campbell to talk to us, CNN law enforcement analyst and former FBI supervisory special agent.
You heard Polo and the assistant police chief say the FBI is on scene. Talk to us about what is happening on the ground there.
JOSH CAMPBELL, CNN LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: Massive investigation underway in Dayton involving multiple agencies, as we heard from the police official talking about it. This mutual aid, that the departments will have, grievances (ph) with other agencies. People surge to that location to begin that investigation.
As Polo mentioned, the FBI is now on the scene. They'll bring a host of resources from the federal government, forensic and analysis, as well as being able to dig into this person's past, when they're able to identify him.
This is a reality here in America in 2019. We're on the scene of one mass shooting in Texas, reporting on another mass shooting in Ohio. If you're a law enforcement agency anywhere around this country, you're now on high alert. In the span of two weeks --
CAMPBELL: -- we had an incident in California, here in Texas, now Dayton. This puts the burden on law enforcement agencies around the country.
We don't know that these are tied together. But you look at the timespan, the condensed timeframe, having multiple incidents. This is a state of emergency for law enforcement in the United States, trying to stop a copycat and trying to ensure the safety of their communities.
PAUL: It's very possible. We don't know for sure but it is plausible that this is a copycat situation, based on what we saw play out yesterday.
CAMPBELL: It's hard to say right now, this early. We want to dig into identifying the shooter. The differences between these two incidents come down to the shooter. Here in Texas, the shooter was taken into custody alive. Authorities were able to gather information about his motive.
It will be challenging for law enforcement officers in Dayton because the subject was deceased. We don't know if the subject took his own life or if it was a fatal round from law enforcement that killed him.
Nevertheless, you're dealing with the subject they cannot interview. So they have to bring in the resources to first, identify him and move out. You want to orbit the subject, to dig into his life and figure out who this person was.
PAUL: And determine he was acting alone. Josh Campbell, appreciate your insight, thank you so much.
Again, I hate to give you this news as you wake up. Early on a Sunday morning, 29 people are dead today, 42 are injured. That's 71 families that are changed this morning in a span of 15 hours because they lost somebody they loved in a mass shooting.
We are back with more on the Dayton, Ohio, massacre in a moment. Stay close.
BLACKWELL: I'm Victor Blackwell, live in El Paso, Texas. This has been a tragic 13 hours of bloodshed, 29 people killed in a matter of just a few hours, 42 injured. Let me tell you about what happened here, 20 people killed, 26 injured here in El Paso, when a man from Allen, Texas, 10 hours away, came here with a long rifle, we're told, and started shooting people.
That investigation continues. We're told --
BLACKWELL: -- by police that he is speaking with them. Now this is a very active scene behind me. The investigation has continued from the moment the first officer arrived, six minutes after that call came in.
We also know that those who lost their lives here, they're still inside this Walmart. This is a massive scene.
Let me now take you to Dayton, where nine people were killed overnight in the interim, coming here and covering this story. We've seen what has happened in Ohio. Let's get the latest on what happened there. Let's bring in Deb Decker. She is the PIO for the Montgomery County Emergency Services.
Deb, thank you for being with us this morning. Give us the latest on what is happening there with that investigation, right now.
DEB DECKER, MONTGOMERY COUNTY EMERGENCY SERVICES: As you know, the shooting began at a place in Oregon district, a very popular district here in Dayton, downtown Dayton.
The shooting began around Iron Bob's (ph) and the shooter, one person, wearing body armor, carrying an assault rifle, began shooting and making their way toward a place called Ned Peppers. A guy from Ned Peppers ended up grabbing the barrel of the gun. So the shooter picked up a handgun and was going to continue shooting.
However, the police arrived and shot the man dead there. So far, including the shooter, there are 10 dead and at least 16 wounded. That's the extent of it.
BLACKWELL: The last number we got was nine. You're saying there's 10 dead in this shooting in Ohio?
DECKER: Yes. There are 10 dead, including the shooter.
BLACKWELL: Including the shooter. OK. This investigation, tell us what is happening at this moment. I imagine it's shut down and there's a large scene there. Give us an idea of what's happening right now.
DECKER: As you said, it is shut down. The investigation is still going on. Police have marked off the areas in Oregon district that they're keeping people out of, to do their investigation.
We have -- the convention center is set up for people that have questions or trying to find someone or need more information about possible loved ones that were in the area at the time. We are here responding at Montgomery County and waiting for the investigators to do what they need to do, in order to bring peace to these families.
BLACKWELL: The 16 injured, do you know if those are all gunshot victims, as well?
DECKER: I do not know that at this point.
BLACKWELL: Is there any idea -- and I know this is early on -- of a motive?
Did this man say anything?
DECKER: I heard nothing about a motive, no.
BLACKWELL: OK. All right. I understand you're asking people to come forward with information, pictures, video. Talk to us about that.
DECKER: Honestly, I don't know that they're doing anything of that. I think they're still trying to assess the scene and get people the treatment they need.
BLACKWELL: Can you give us a clear idea of the Oregon district and what that is?
DECKER: It's just a part of the -- it's more of an upscale part of the downtown area. It's a nice place. It's got good restaurants and shopping and things like that. It's not far -- it's off Fifth Street in downtown Dayton.
BLACKWELL: I'm sorry; there's a bit of a delay, so if you hear me jump in, there's a delay. I'm not cutting you off.
Do you know what happened in Dayton?
The victims, have they been removed from the scene?
DECKER: As far as I know, yes. Everybody is getting treatment.
DECKER: Everybody is getting treatment.
BLACKWELL: OK, PIO with Montgomery County Emergency Services there in Ohio. The second of two mass shootings in 13 hours. Deb, thank you so much.
I will continue our coverage here, live from El Paso, where there is an active investigation at this Walmart. Stay with us. Our breaking news coverage here on NEW DAY continues.
BLACKWELL: Welcome back. I'm Victor Blackwell, live from El Paso, Texas, where, in 13 hours, 39 people have been killed, more than 40 injured.
From Dayton, Ohio, this is the scene of, unfortunately, the latest mass shooting. We're told nine people have been killed at this scene, 16 injured. We're told that the suspect, the shooter in this case, has been taken down. He also is dead. I have with us Josh Campbell, CNN law enforcement analyst.
Here in El Paso, this was Saturday morning, families, a department store.
We go to Ohio, that is 1:00 in the morning, probably loud music. Some people drinking. Very different response from police. Walk us through, first, in Ohio, how law enforcement approaches that scene.
CAMPBELL: Yes. Absolutely. Two different characteristics with these scenes. How unbelievable it is, we're standing at a crime scene, talking about another mass shooting at a different scene, just unbelievable.
As you mentioned, there's different characteristics, first being the shooter and how the shooters were taken down.
Here we know the suspect was taken into custody by law enforcement, he's alive. Presumably they can question him, glean information from him. A much different story in Ohio, where the shooter is deceased.
Obviously, it's much more difficult for officers to gather information about him, to get to that motive. They'll have to bring in those resources to dig into people in his past and the social media, anything that may help them glean the details, a much more difficult job.
You mentioned, there's a similarity in timeframe here. This is a condensed timeframe, where you have one after the other but different settings. We don't yet know why the subject traveled the 650 miles from Allen, Texas, where he's --
CAMPBELL: -- from, to this border city to conduct the attack. We've been reporting on this manifesto that is being looked into.
Was this person radicalized by some kind of hateful ideology?
There's that piece. We don't yet have the same clues with the Dayton shooting because it's so early in the stages of that investigation. We're learning the details about the victim and the method that the attack went down. We don't yet have the details about that shooter. It's hard to compare them but there's are differences, as you mentioned.
BLACKWELL: We are starting to learn about Dayton. But what we are hearing about here in El Paso, at the department store.
I remember that, if there's loud music, sometimes when you hear the gunshots, you don't know if those are what it is. How does -- what's the response going into a bar?
CAMPBELL: So if you're a patron at one of the locations, the store behind us, where the shooting went down, or a bar, if you're inside a Walmart and you hear gunfire, something that is congruous with the normal setting, obviously you will take notice.
In a bar, with loud music, you factor in alcohol and people having a good time. There may be a delayed response there. I can tell you from the law enforcement perspective, the response will be the same. You're going to go in and go to the sound of the guns and try to disrupt any threat that might be under way.
Here, we know the response time was very short. Law enforcement officers arriving in short order, taking the suspect into custody without firing a shot. Different in Dayton, we heard from the law enforcement chief that we referred to earlier, the police engaged with the suspect. He mentioned the authorities were in the area.
Again, the differences, the similarities, it's striking. We're trying to keep straight two different shootings in our minds that happened in the span of a few hours.
BLACKWELL: It was remarkable that we were covering two major shootings in a week. Now there are two in a weekend.
BLACKWELL: From your perspective, standing here at one mass shooting, covering another, what goes through your mind?
CAMPBELL: I think if you're a law enforcement official at any department across the country, you are on high alert. Obviously information sharing in this new age is very rapid. Law enforcement departments that are taking note.
NYPD was watching to see if they needed to protect their facilities. Any department is going to be on high alert. We don't yet know if the attack that happened in Dayton was a copycat attack that followed this attack. A lot of times these people want notoriety. You don't know what motivates them.
I think I would consider this an emergency for law enforcement of the United States. You back up to last week. We're in California covering another shooting. In the span of two weeks, three mass shootings in the United States. If you're a department that's charged with protecting your community, you're on high alert.
BLACKWELL: Josh Campbell with us all morning, here in El Paso, this investigation is going on right behind us. A massive scene, takes a lot of time, when you are considering the space of a Walmart Supercenter.
Unfortunately, the bodies are inside, as investigators look for every piece of evidence in what will be a prosecution. The suspect in El Paso is speaking with investigators, did not turn himself in but was taken into custody without incident.
There's what's happening in Dayton, Ohio, nine killed, 16 injured. And the crime scene that is expansive there. We will cover both of these here, as CNN's breaking news continues.
BLACKWELL: I'm Victor Blackwell, live in El Paso, Texas. It is Sunday morning in America. And this country is reckoning with gun violence: 29 people killed in the matter of 13 hours, more than 40 injured. I'm standing here, where a man came in with a long gun and shot and killed 20 people, 26 injured.
But overnight, another shooting, this time in Dayton, Ohio. Nine people killed there, 16 injured. We know the shooter was killed by police.
Let's go to Elizabeth Long with Kettering Medical Center.
Elizabeth, thank you for joining us.
Of those 16 injured, how many are at your facility?
ELIZABETH LONG, KETTERING MEDICAL CENTER: Good morning. We had 13 patients in three of the hospitals in our network. At one of our hospitals, we had nine people come in, mainly gunshots to lower extremities. One was shot in the abdomen.
I have not gotten information from the other hospitals. One of the hospitals we had at least two people that were treated and released. I'm not sure on the total number. The number might be growing. Some walked in at a later time and went to hospitals that were far away from the Oregon district. So the number of injured might be rising.
BLACKWELL: Elizabeth, you make a good point here. I want to make sure our viewers know this. We have been here before. In the aftermath, in the first hours after a mass shooting, those numbers will fluctuate. Those numbers that are injured and deceased, that will change in the fog after an incident like this.
BLACKWELL: You talked about one person shot in the abdomen.
Do you have the number of those that are facing life-threatening injuries?
LONG: I do not. At one hospital, one person is in serious condition, eight people are in fair condition.
BLACKWELL: Is there an age range you have?
LONG: I have not been able to get that. Of course, immediately in the first few hours, our hospitals are focused on caring for the patient. I am fully making contact with them, working with them, to get this information.
BLACKWELL: Is anyone in surgery right now?
LONG: I know two people were taken to surgery in one of our hospitals.
BLACKWELL: OK. At least two people in surgery.
Are you expecting more to come in?
We know the investigation is going on in the Oregon district.
Do you expect more to come in?
LONG: That is hard to say. After the initial shock wears off -- and I was involved in a horrific incident. I was in New York when that car, a couple years ago, drove up onto the sidewalk and started to plow through for several blocks. So knowing, you're kind of in shock after a while.
You looking to see to other people. And then, you start to say, hey, something may have happened to me. So I think that could be what is happening. I was told that one person went into one of our hospitals later on, after someone suggested that that person go in and get treated.
BLACKWELL: All right. Elizabeth Long with Kettering Medical Center. Several of the 16 injured in the shooting in Dayton, one in the abdomen, two treated and released. And two people taken into surgery. Elizabeth, thank you for being with us.
LONG: Thank you.
BLACKWELL: We will continue our breaking news coverage, not only of what happened in Dayton but what happened in El Paso. Two active investigations, after 29 people were killed by gunshot wounds, across the country, in a matter of 13 hours. Stay with us.
PAUL: I almost cannot believe what we need to talk about this morning. In a 13-hour span, we had 29 people who have died -- 41, 42, actually, who have been injured in two mass shootings. El Paso, yesterday at 10:39 central; overnight, at 1:22, somebody started shooting in Dayton, Ohio, an arts and entertainment area.
On a Saturday night, people were out and about. And there was one man, Izack Johnson, who was near the pub where this second mass shooting took place. Nine people died, 16 are in hospitals. You're going to see here Izack's video that he took as it was happening. Let's watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
IZACK JOHNSON, WITNESS: Oh, (INAUDIBLE).
Dude, what the (INAUDIBLE)?
What the (INAUDIBLE)?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PAUL: It gives you a sense of what was going on. What struck you might have been the same thing that struck me. You heard the gunshots initially. They weren't coming out fast and furious. Then all of a sudden, there was a barrage of guns going off. We know the suspect was shot by authorities.
The assistant police chief there, Matt Carper, said they don't know who fired the deadly shot to kill the suspect. But we know he was shot by multiple authorities. I want to bring in Izack Johnson now.
We understand you were near the pub. We heard your reaction, when you started a process, what was going on?
Help us understand what you were feeling when you first heard those gunshots?
JOHNSON: I'll be honest, I didn't really know. I was taking my girlfriend to work. And there's nice motorcycles and cars. So I was sitting there waiting and I heard a pop. I thought it might have been fireworks or something. Just like one or two before I started the video.
Then it was three or four and fireworks are timed to be specifically five seconds or three seconds apart or --
JOHNSON: -- right back-to-back and those were just spaced out, uneven, so I was like, (INAUDIBLE), excuse my profanity and that. But yes, I was like, what's going on?
And then, I saw people start running. And cars coming out of the intersection like recklessly. I was -- I didn't even get out of the car because I was just sitting there, watching everything happen.
PAUL: I saw the window going up and down. Did you get a sense of trying to protect yourself at that moment?
JOHNSON: I really don't know. I think I was going to get -- I was thinking that I should actually go inside. Now at the same time, I was looking at my phone and I was like, I need to record this. So I don't know. I was just sitting there, deciding if I needed to go down to see what was happening or if I needed to get down inside.
PAUL: Izack, is your girlfriend OK?
JOHNSON: She is, thankfully.
PAUL: Was she in front of or in the building, near where this happened?
JOHNSON: No. She's actually at work. And a few -- I know there was a couple that came in and the woman, she was extremely in shock. They were in the Med. And she said they heard a couple shots and people rushed the door. They just all dropped.
Another one of her coworkers nearly, she heard the shots and everyone there was (INAUDIBLE) all around it and hitting the bar. I honestly, I think nothing. I was just (INAUDIBLE) pretty much and nobody was paying attention to me. I was just there and it was crazy.
PAUL: Izack, we see through your video that you got out of the car.
What happened after that?
JOHNSON: I actually walked up to the door and I was about to go inside. I started looking back, because I was confused. I was like, I don't know. Because it stopped. I didn't know (INAUDIBLE) there were a few guns. One doesn't fire (ph) that fast, obviously. I don't know if there's cops on this street or what.
PAUL: Did you see -- we saw the people running in your video.
Did you talk to anybody before you got back in your car?
JOHNSON: No. I heard people across the room. I could see (INAUDIBLE) putting her hand to her head and I heard her when she came in. So she saw someone get shot. I already knew that.
I didn't want to ask, did you see?
JOHNSON: I don't want to ask questions. That's a little excessive, if you ask me. That's crazy. That's just insane.
PAUL: Izack, we're glad that you're OK. We're glad your girlfriend is OK. Thank you for sharing that video with us and with our viewers.
JOHNSON: No problem. (INAUDIBLE) for Dayton and the United States (INAUDIBLE).
PAUL: Absolutely. We're glad you're OK. We're so sorry for what this community is going through. But thank you for taking the time to talk to us this morning. I know it's been a rough night for you. So please take good care of yourself and each other.
PAUL: We'll be right back.
BLACKWELL: Welcome back. I'm Victor Blackwell. This is CNN special live coverage of two mass shootings in America in a span of just 13 hours. I'm here in El Paso, Texas. And this is the first shooting of the weekend.
And before the country can come to terms with what happened here, another shooting overnight. Let's go to Boris Sanchez, traveling with the president in New Jersey.
Has the president been alerted about what happened in Dayton, overnight?
BORIS SANCHEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Victor, so far, there's no indication that President Trump has been briefed by aides on the situation in Dayton. We expect that it will likely happen shortly if it hasn't happened already. And the president will likely send out condolences, a situation that this president has had to find himself in routinely, having to offer condolences to communities stricken by grief and ravaged by gun violence.
BLACKWELL: We know the president has reacted several times to what happened in El Paso.
SANCHEZ: President Trump, sending out a heartfelt note, offering condolences to the families of victims in El Paso. The president also alluding to the shooter's hateful motive there. Look at this tweet the president sent last night.
"Today's shooting in El Paso, Texas, was not only tragic, it was an act of cowardice. I know that I stand with everyone in this Country to condemn today's hateful act. There are no reasons or excuses that will ever justify killing innocent people.... Melania and I are sending out heartfelt thoughts and prayers to the good people of Texas."
We should point out the president, historically, has routinely trafficked in the language of white supremacists and rhetoric of white nationalists from the day that he announced his candidacy, going down that escalator, talking about Mexican immigrants being rapists and thieves and supposing that some of them were good people.
He routinely talks about immigrant communities being crime-infested, bleeding concepts, talking about immigrants as invaders. Just a few weeks ago he was asked if he felt that rhetoric, that language inspired racists. And he said that he was not concerned about it because a lot of people agreed with him.
On the issue of gun violence, the president has been faced with this many times. After the shooting at that high school in Parkland, Florida, he gathered lawmakers and spoke ambitiously about passing some kind of comprehensive gun control legislation. He even joked with congresspeople who were there at the White House, that they were afraid of the gun lobby, that they were afraid of the NRA but he was not.
Since then, no such talk from the president -- Victor.
BLACKWELL: Boris Sanchez, traveling with the president in New Jersey.
We know that Congress is on that August recess. We'll see if we hear from members this morning. We'll pause here at the top of the hour.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (voice-over): This is CNN breaking news.
BLACKWELL: Good morning. I'm Victor Blackwell.