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One Dead, 10-Plus Injured In Active Shooting Situation In West Texas; Active Shooter Shot And Killed In Odessa, Texas. Aired 6-7p ET
Aired August 31, 2019 - 18:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANA CABRERA, CNN HOST: You're live in the CNN NEWSROOM. I'm Ana Cabrera in New York. We are following breaking news here on CNN. It is an active shooter, as described by police in West Texas. At one person, police say, possibly more than one are shooting at people from a moving vehicle.
And we are being told there are casualties, many people shot, a lot of information coming into CNN. Polo Sandoval is verifying sources and checking details. He's with us now. Polo, what's the latest?
POLO SANDOVAL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: This is happening in West Texas, Ana, in the Midland of Odessa area. The Odessa Police Department taking to their Facebook page to send out a wide warning to everybody in and around the that interstate region to basically seek shelter according to this post that was published about maybe 38 minutes ago.
The Odessa Police Department confirms that at least one suspect, possibly two, were driving around the region there randomly shooting at individuals. They are reporting multiple victims. Our colleague, Ed Lavandera, hearing that at least ten confirmed injuries and that number could potentially make it at least up to 20, based on what we're hearing from authorities there on the ground. And among the injured, one dead. We also understand a state trooper is among the injured, however, we're not sure if that is possibly the fatality.
And According to authorities, investigators are saying that a suspect basically was driving a United States Postal Service vehicle, possibly taken without authorization. And then the other vehicle that authorities Are looking for right now is a gold and white small Toyota truck, as well as that USPS van. And authorities are asking people simply stay indoors.
Still don't know about a possible motive. This is extremely preliminary, that includes the numbers and the scenario we're hearing. But as you gets those accounts from the ground, and see those photos also that are being published on social media as well, showing a very active scene right now there in the Midland, Odessa area with police on the side of the road, trying to track down the suspect and/or suspects.
But, again, these are fresh images that have been published on social media right now, and we expect, obviously, to get more details. That includes in the next 30 minutes when the City of Odessa, Ana, will be holding an official press conference to bring us up to speed on what exactly happened today four weeks after the El Paso Walmart shooting.
CABRERA: And we have, again, ongoing images that are coming in to CNN through social media that we're vetting and verifying before bringing them to you. We can say this is happening right now there in West Texas, again, the Odessa/Midland area, where police are on the hunt for an active shooter who they say is driving around shooting at people. Officials say they believe at this point that they're shooting at random people and not yet known if there are more than one shooter.
Polo, please stay with me. We are also getting the first pictures, again, from the ground of the active shooting situation. Here's another one for you, where you can see some of the damage that was done to a vehicle. Denise Perez tells CNN her boss, a truck driver with Odessa Furniture Exchange, had his truck shot at while doing a delivery. She says everyone with her is okay, with him, he was doing a delivery with a delivery truck when someone in a truck drove past him and shot his truck and another person's car. That's a quote based on her post.
Let's bring in James Gagliano. He's a CNN Law Enforcement analyst, and retired FBI Supervisory Agent. Also with us is CNN National Security Analyst Juliette Kayyem, former Assistant Secretary for the Department of Homeland Security.
James, Midland and Odessa are small communities, about 20 miles apart, not large cities. Does that mean the FBI could be called in faster to assist or does this have to meet a certain criteria before the Feds come in?
JAMES GAGLIANO, CNN LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: No. I think -- Ana, I think back in the 90s, and Juliette can certainly speak to this, there was a presidential decision directive that gave the FBI oversight anytime there's presumed to be terrorism.
And, look, we have to operate from that until it is disproven. So something like this, we have one, possibly two shooters, this is the worst possible situation for law enforcement where you have a mobile crisis site, meaning you have somebody in a vehicle that is moving throughout counties, possibly crossing state lines, those type of things. It requires a lot of depth and (ph) coordination between law enforcement. The FBI certainly would be called in.
But, obviously, the understanding here is the first responder or the brave local cops in Odessa, they are the ones that are going to be there the quickest, the ones that can immediately get there and potentially interdict people that, in these situations, generally speaking, Ana, people aren't looking to negotiate.
They're not looking to get a plane to Aruba, they're not looking to have political prisoners released, they are looking to ratchet up body counts. And in this instance, the police have to get to them quickly. And they've done a great job in doing that, and the other three incidents we've talked about in the last couple of weeks, and hopefully they can bring this to bed pretty soon.
As before, last thing, we've got to remind people, run, hide, fight, tell, in that order. That's what you've got to do in this situation. And we're doing our job right now to put the word out on social media, put the word out on CNN, make sure people understand if you're anywhere in the vicinity of this place, avoid it, and, obviously, you cannot walk around in an oblivious condition. You have to be in a heightened state of alert now, Ana.
CABRERA: Yes, no doubt. We know the president has been briefed, Juliette. Safe to say, the FBI director, Christopher Wray, maybe other members of Homeland Security have been as well.
JULIETTE KAYYEM, NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: That's exactly right. So right now, this is early, it's still ongoing, just looking at three things, method means (INAUDIBLE) is really unique, as James was saying. Possibly two shooters from cars, you know, that could be anything. It also, as we often know, may just be one shooter. Sometimes people, you know, separate eyewitnesses think it's two separate people.
Then you have the means, of course, we get back to the gun issue. And, you know, I am curious what kind of gun it is and how the shooting is occurring by drivers, by passengers. We just don't know this yet. And then the reason why you bring up the FBI and it is the motivation, we can't be in 2019 without first concluding or at least first suspecting that this may have a racial animus of some sort or some sort of animus.
Look, this can range from anything like terrorism to a hate crime, which we're seeing a lot more of white supremacy and those issues. It could also be two guys on drugs. So we have to remember that this happens, you know, unfortunately as well.
And so we'll just wait, but those are the three buckets that we'll probably hear a lot about in the next half an hour.
CABRERA: James, if there are, in fact, multiple shooters, how would law enforcement on the ground be handling that?
GAGLIANO: You know, first of all, I mean, Juliette nailed it here. I mean, the issue for law enforcement with this essentially moving crisis site is to try to do the calculus, Ana, in real-time in a vacuum to figure out what the motivations and causes are. And as you pointed out, it could be a whole host of things.
But that obviously is going to have a huge impact on the response. Police have to assume that this active shooter or active shooters are looking just to harm as many people as possible, until proven differently.
And in this instance, again, we don't know if this is a domestic dispute, if it's workplace violence, if it's a bias crime, if -- as Juliette pointed out, if it's an active of terrorism, domestic terrorism, we don't know those things. And that's why it is so difficult for law enforcement in these situations. They've got to get on these guys as quickly as possible, stop them from hurting other people and then sort out whether or not this is a single incident, meaning these are one or two people, and that's it or whether or not they are part of a broader conspiracy, Ana.
CABRERA: And, Juliette, it's a grim question, but has law enforcement, as a whole, learned anything from the recent mass shootings, like in El Paso and Dayton, which, again, were just four weeks ago?
KAYYEM: Yes, absolutely. So the first thing is I want to applaud, and then there's lots of questions too. As James is saying, it's clearly about communication to the public. The goal at this stage, and this is going to sound really morose, is you want fewer people dead.
And the only way you can do that at this stage, given what we're seeing in America today, is get them out of public, notify them, so the Tweets that we're seeing, the communications, getting on CNN, and just saying, you know, essentially, shelter in place, do whatever you need to do.
I think the second thing though that is unique here is we tend to leave most of these incidents, whether it's a Florida school shooting or El Paso and a Walmart or even a street in Ohio, you do have a stationary site. The moving shooter in real-time, as compared to say the Washington sniper, what, over 15 years ago, is unique because you have a chase, if they know where they are, combined with the capacity of the guy to get away, plus he's armed, and we just don't know now whether there's passengers or anything else.
So that is just so -- you know, that is so fluid and dangerous because, you know, the guy or guys can get off the highway, you know, exit 4, whatever it is, and start shooting on a street that doesn't seem like they might be on five minutes ago.
So the public information, everyone get off the streets, you just want to keep the body count lower at this stage. That is success in this sort of horrible, you know, situation we find ourselves in in the United States, and then try to catch these guys.
CABRERA: OK. Juliette and James, please stand by, a quick break. We're continuing to watch this breaking news out of West Texas. Don't go anywhere. You're live in the CNN NEWSROOM.
CABRERA: Welcome back. We're following breaking news. Police say there is an active shooter situation in West Texas near Midland and Odessa. They believe there are potentially two shootings in two separate vehicles. One suspect is believed to be in a gold Toyota. The other is believed to have hijacked a mail truck. Police say there are also reports of an active shooter at a Home Depot in Odessa, Texas. We are told there are casualties with many people shot, at least one person dead according to Odessa city officials.
Joining us know, CNN Crime and Justice Correspondent, Shimon Prokupecz. Shimon, what have you learned?
SHIMON PROKUPECZ, CNN CRIME AND JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: Yes. So, look, I think right now, based on everything we are hearing and people we're talking to, and things we're just sort of hearing, basically, it does sound like things are still a little chaotic. Police are not running around like they were before in the same manner. We had what appears to be a state trooper was shot, chasing, looking for this suspect, they may have encountered at least one of the suspects.
And then that's how the trooper was shot.
It's unclear what the situation is and where that suspect is that state trooper encountered. And, really, now, I think it's a process as we have seen time and time again in these shootings, they're going through different areas, neighborhood, stores. There's a movie theater.
There's a -- it's called Synergy, there's an entertainment complex where this apparently took place near the shooting scene. So police have been going through there, making sure that no one inside is the shooter. So we're seeing what we see in a lot of these situations.
What makes this very different obviously than what we are used to seeing is that if, in fact, there are two shooters, even if there are two shooters. We've seen a lot of shootings where in initial reports, you get one shooter, two shooters and usually those turn out to be not the case.
But in this case, it seems, that police, at least at this point, believe that there are at least two shooters make this a very more dynamic, very different situation than we normally see in these kinds of shootings. And we also don't have a clear number yet on how many people have been injured.
One thing is very clear, is that there are several people shot, at least one state trooper has been injured, possibly shot, they believe, and now the hunt, it appears, is still on for suspects, for shooters out there.
And keep in mind, this is in Texas. Obviously, this is coming just within a month after the El Paso shooting. It's going to be the same investigators, the Texas Rangers, that have been out there investigating that case. They're going to be back out here investigating and assisting in this investigation along with the FBI, obviously, and the ATF, a lot of resources.
But I think right now, it's very clear that between the Midland Police Department, the Odessa Police Department and the other local authorities there that it's a pretty chaotic situation that is still very much ongoing, things are still at play, and quite frankly, it doesn't appear that things are safe -- fully safe yet. It seems that police have some control of the situation, but things are still very fluid and it doesn't appear that things are safe out there.
CABRERA: Right. And we know Home Depot in Odessa is now a location where they believe at least one of the shooters, if there are more than one, has now gone and is shooting.
I want to bring in Jonathan Wackrow. He is a CNN Law Enforcement Analyst and a former Secret Service agent. Jonathan, from the latest information we have, this is still an active situation. Can you take us inside how law enforcement would be navigating this situation right now?
JONATHAN WACKROW, CNN LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: Well, to Shimon's point just a moment ago, this is a chaotic situation. And, you know, part of the reasoning around the chaos in the early moments and the early reporting of the active shooter situation is we're actually now dealing with a new dynamic in the totality of active shooters is this mobile active shooter utilizing vehicles. This is the second time this year that we have seen a change or an increase in tactics around active shooters. Earlier this year, we saw the utilization of a silencer.
So these the new dynamics are a challenge for law enforcement to address -- they have to address on the fly. Right now, what law enforcement is -- one of the big challenges that they have is containment. They have to try to contain this mobile shooting situation and put that threat down and stomp it as fast as possible. But they also have to, you know, contain and preserve all of the various crime scenes for evidentiary value going forward.
CABRERA: And, Shimon, is there any concrete information that these shooters are connected in some way?
PROKUPECZ: There is no concrete information that they are connected. But, you know, I think law enforcement is working under the theory that they are.
I think in a lot of these situations early on, there are all sorts of different reports that come into 911, people call 911. They're hearing gunshots. They're reporting, I hear gunshots here, I think I'm hearing gunshots here. There have been some false reports and that is normal in these kinds of situations. But the fact that you have the police and also the local authorities there are saying that they do believe there is more than one shooter here, possibly two or even more in some cases is very troubling and concerning.
But, you know, people, as they're running from scenes or as they're hearing things, are dialing 911, reporting different things and sometimes it's just -- you know, it's people's instincts and they are reporting just what they're hearing, and it could be erroneous information. But it does seem in this case that police are treating it more seriously, that they do believe that there is more than one shooter. The description of the white mail truck, that is really interesting, that someone may have hijacked this mail truck and then was using it on the shooting spree. There was another car that they were looking for, so that is -- it's a very interesting situation.
We don't know how this person came into contact with this postal truck, how they got their hands on it. All of that is very much unknown. And there's still so much we don't know. But it's definitely a very type of situation, I think, than what we normally see because of the multiple shooters, the vehicles, the number of cars that police are looking for in this situation.
CABRERA: And, again, we have evidence now the shots that were fired, hitting at least one vehicles, that was out and about. I just want to reiterate what they are looking for. Law enforcement telling us it's a gold and white small Toyota truck as well as a USPS postal van where they believe there are active shooters driving and shooting at people. They've also identified one location. It's a Home Depot in Odessa, where they believe an active shooter situation may be underway.
We are continuing to gather information. We are expecting a news conference with officials there locally here in the next 10 to 15 minutes. We'll be monitoring that and be bringing you any new information we'll learn from that.
In the meantime, let me take a quick break as we continue to watch this breaking news out of Texas. Don't go anywhere. You're live in the CNN NEWSROOM.
CABRERA: Welcome back. We are waiting on a press conference right now concerning an active shooter situation in Midland and Odessa, Texas. That's West Texas.
Here's what we know right now. At least one person is dead and more than ten are injured. By definition, that means America is experiencing its latest mass shooting.
We are told there are at least two shooters. Police believe one gunman is traveling in a gold or white Toyota truck. The other is in a stolen U.S. Postal Service van according to officials there on the scene.
There are multiple details we cannot confirm right now, such as the multiple shooting locations but we are hoping to get some answers when this presser begins.
Again, expect it in the next few minutes.
Right now, we hope to hear these shooters have been arrested but we don't know just yet what the status is. We're also learning that ATF is responding to these shootings, according to a tweet by ATF Dallas. We're getting reaction now coming from former Texas Congressman and 2020 candidate Beto O'Rourke whose community of El Paso just experienced a mass shooting earlier this month. Here is what he tweeted. Our hearts are with Midland Odessa and everyone in West Texas who has to endure this again. More information is forthcoming, but here is what we know. We need to end this epidemic.
Another 2020 candidate and fellow Texan, Julian Castro, also tweeting, heartbreaking news out of Odessa and Midland, Texas, as police search for an active shooter at large. Stay indoors and monitor news alerts and safety protocol. So, again, a lot of information coming into CNN.
I want to go back to CNN's Shimon Prokupecz here with me. Shimon, what have you learned since we last spoke?
PROKUPECZ: So I think it's best to just describe it's still very fluid and it's what you would imagine in this kind of a situation, things very much still ongoing. And I think authorities are still trying to get a handle on exactly what they're dealing with, who they're dealing with, why this happened.
And like you said, they are looking for this other vehicle, this Toyota, this vehicle that we have been describing as a second vehicle. They have identified one of the vehicles they were looking for, which was a white postal van, they believe, was stolen and was used by the shooter.
And we're seeing all sorts of photos posted on Twitter of cars just with bullet holes all over them, all along this stretch of road, cars turned sideways almost, as you -- probably drivers trying to escape the gunfire, and just couldn't escape it. There are bullet holes through many of these vehicles. And it appears that the shooter or shooters in this case were just firing at random just as cars were driving along the stretch of road, and they're just firing at them.
And people -- you could tell by the way some of these vehicles are positioned now that people were trying to escape the gunfire. We also have people who appears were running from a -- there's an entertainment center close by to one of these scenes where some folks may have been injured as they were trying to flee the gunfire.
So, again, as time and time and again, we see with these situations, very chaotic in the beginning, and also on the police department side, very chaotic, Midland and Odessa both dealing with active shooters through their cities, through their towns, trying to find these people, chasing them in some cases, thinking they have leads, while they're getting more reports of gunfire. And we saw there's police with heavily armed weapons, rifles, as they go out and search, putting helmets, vests, heavy-duty vests to try and protect themselves.
So, again, early on, when you see these situations, even for the police, it is very chaotic and you can hear that going on as this was unfolding. The police trying to communicate even with each other. You have two different police departments here trying to communicate with each other about what's going on, relaying information in different towns. That always creates chaos because they're not all on the same frequency, so you have to find a way to communicate with them. So that creates chaos.
So a lot of information right now out there. What we don't yet know for certain is how many people have been injured. We know several people have been shot. We know a state trooper, we believe, has been injured who may have intercepted this shooter, at least one of the shooters in this case. We don't have information on the second shooter yet, and, really, again, just a very chaotic and still fluid situation.
It does appear by the sound of things that things have calmed down a little bit there for the police department, but still very much an ongoing process as they continue to search, going through various locations to try and find out exactly who they're looking for and to make sure that there are no other people that have been injured.
CABRERA: Right. And according to local law enforcement, both what we're hearing from Odessa, as well as Midland officials, they say at least ten people have been shot, possibly more injured and, again, at least one person confirmed dead. That's the latest as far as the numbers go. But, again, it's still a fluid situation. And, again, the two vehicles that now have been identified as a white or gold Toyota, as well as a USPS postal van that they believe are involved in these active shooter situations.
And we are seeing more and more from social media, people sending in pictures showing bullet holes in vehicles and describing it as somebody driving around, actively shooting at moving vehicles.
I want to bring in Juliette Kayyem. She is a CNN National Security Analyst and a former Assistant Secretary for the Department of Homeland Security.
Now, Juliette, we know Midland and Odessa are small communities, they aren't large cities. Does that mean the FBI would be called in faster to assist or does this have to meet a certain criteria before the feds come in? How do you think the federal officials who are involved are handling this?
KAYYEM: So part of it is just going to be based off need at this stage. Can the locals or other local communities assist in whatever is going on right now. As Shimon just said, we're just not sure at what stage we're at, did they catch the guys or did one or two or both of them stopped shooting.
The federal presence will be immediate because it can always be pulled back. In other words, you're just going to make an assumption that an active shooter case like this could have a federal nexus to either terrorism, a hate crime and that it's not some workplace violence issues. And those assumptions are probably right, I think a rational person can make that assumption today. Now, the motive issue will then get to whether there's a federal
nexus, if it's terrorism, white supremacy, Islamic terrorism or if it's a hate crime, we don't know yet. So that's the range of possibilities. The fact that I'm saying them does not mean any of them are true, it's just this is how rational investigators would approach a situation like this.
But right now this is going to be run by the locals until they know what they have and until they stop essentially what we think is still an active shooting case. We'll learn a little bit more and as long as the local capacity is not stretched to the limit.
What we don't know and I'll just say this, we have been in situations in which cars are used as weapons of mass destruction. We saw that a lot with ISIS attack. We've also been in situations where you have mass shootings at a physical site. We have a combination of that now.
You have the moving vehicle with the guns and what we think is two. And that is so much harder to stop because, one; they're mobile, the villains, the culprits are mobile but, two; you can't communicate to the public that easily. I'm in a car right now. I'm trying to get to the studio, how would you communicate to me right now that I might be under threat? It's much harder than let's say if I were in a building or a school.
CABRERA: OK. Juliette, standby and Shimon I know you're still working on getting more details. We have to squeeze in another quick break as we await this press conference in which we hope to learn more information from officials there in West Texas. Stay with us as we continue to watch this breaking news. Don't go anywhere. You're live in the CNN NEWSROOM.
[18:36:05] CABRERA: Welcome back. We are waiting a press conference right now concerning an active shooter situation in Midland and Odessa, Texas. At least one person is dead and more than 10 are injured. Let me get right to CNN's Crime and Justice Correspondent, Shimon Prokupecz with some new information. Shimon?
SHIMON PROKUPECZ, CNN CRIME AND JUSTICE REPORTER: Yes. Significant information here coming out of the Midland Police Department. They say that the active shooter was shot and killed in Odessa, Texas. This is according to the Midland Police Department.
The suspect that they were looking for that they engaged with that trooper. It's believed that's how that trooper was shot. He is dead. That suspect is now dead. Police are saying - they say that it's been confirmed that the active shooter was shot and killed at the Cinergy in Odessa.
This appears to be an entertainment complex. I'm not familiar with this area, but from just some of the research that I've done, there's a movie theater there. There are some stores there. So it was at this complex the police engaged this shooter. He was killed. It's not clear if he shot himself or if they actually shot him. But
we do know that there was an exchange of gunshots between the police and the shooter. Very significantly, they say there is no active shooter at this time and that agencies are investigating reports of possible suspects.
So what does this all mean, obviously, well it sounds like police are not sure that they're looking for anyone else. Now, initial reports as we were saying always say there's more than one shooter, people calling 911 concern that they're hearing gunshots, seeing cars, seeing people run sometimes are mistaken and that's when we get reports of more than one shooter.
Police right now are saying very significant piece of information. Yes, the shooter is dead but also there is no active shooter or active shooting situation that they're dealing with. So right now it seems at least that the police are saying that they have this under control. They're going to keep searching.
They're going to try to find these other cars, description of other people that witnesses may have provided, certainly that's going to keep going significant. We have a shooter dead and right now no active shooter.
CABRERA: Right. Let me just read the specific tweet here from the Midland Police Department. "It has been confirmed that the active shooter was shot and killed at the Cinergy in Odessa. There is no active shooter at this time," write Midland Police. All agencies are investigating reports of possible suspects.
So as we continue to follow this situation, let me bring in James Gagliano, retired FBI Supervisory Special Agent who's been with us from the beginning of this. James, first, your thoughts on this new information.
GAGLIANO: Hugely consequential news and the police department was right to get out in front of this. The most important piece of information for the public is, is there an ongoing threat. And, obviously, in this situation it appears that the shooter has been neutralized or interdicted by the police.
Ana, I think I've heard a couple of the other analysts say the same thing and I echo this, while we are through this first phase and while we can take a deep breath. The work is not done yet and Jonathan Wackrow spoke about preservation of crime scenes and Juliette talked about, hey, the initial reports are often inaccurate and we've got to follow every lead, we've got to follow the evidence where it goes.
We've also got to make certain that there were no co-conspirators here and that's difficult to do when the primary suspect, the shooter has been interdicted. You cannot question that person. So I'm guaranteeing you, the FBI, that the State Police, the Department of Public Safety in Texas, the local police officers, they are going through the subjects vehicle right now, they are running background checks or indices checks as we call it in the industry, going back to see if there's any criminal record, see if there's a social media imprint, while we are at least cresting ourselves out of the woods, the job is not done yet.
I'm going to be interested to hear what the public officials in Texas say about this to find out whether or not they are a hundred percent certain that this was a lone wolf or a single shooter or whether this person was inspired, directed or had co-conspirators, Ana.
[18:40:07] CABRERA: And I do have some new information that also is just being confirmed by our team here. One person dead, 21 injured now is what the word is from the mayor of Midland, Texas. Confirming, again, 21 people injured with one person dead and what we know is at least one person, the active shooter has also been killed.
Don't know if he shot and killed himself or if it was in the exchange of gunfire with police. But Midland Police saying that an active shooter has been killed and that they do not believe there's an active shooter at this time. We also have some new information coming in again from the local medical center there and it looks like at least one of the victims who was shot was a 17-month old child.
We're working to get more information about those injured. The Mayor of Midland Texas in fact is joining us right now, Jerry Morales. Thank you so much, Mayor Morales, for being here with us. What is the latest information you can tell us?
MAYOR JERRY MORALES, MIDLAND, TEXAS: Yes. Good afternoon. So yes we have confirmed that the active shooter, we have one confirmed active shooter that has been killed and the Midland Police Department did kill that shooter. We have at least 20 citizens who have been injured not necessarily from the shooter, but from the shooter being active.
And then we had one Midland police officer who was shot and he's in surgery. It's non-life-threatening and one Department of Public Safety injury from the shooter, non-life-threatening. So we are hoping that this was just one shooter and that we have contained him.
CABRERA: And so you said you're hoping that it's just one shooter. At this time, it's unclear to you at least that if there are multiple shooters.
MORALES: That is correct.
CABRERA: OK. And as far as the shooter that has been killed, do you know anything about this person?
MORALES: I do not know anything about the person or what the motive was. So this has all been happening very fast, it was all in movement. And between Midland and Odessa, there's about 20 miles difference. The shooter was pulled over on the interstate by a DPS officer, that's when he shot the officer and then took off and started shooting randomly and then everything happened after that.
CABRERA: And where was it that the shooter ultimately died?
MORALES: At a movie theater called Cinergy in between Midland and Odessa.
CABRERA: And what was the circumstance in which police encountered that person there?
MORALES: So, again, just pursued into a chase and between all of the law enforcement, they trapped him in the parking lot of the Cinergy theater and then that's when they were able to engage the shooter.
CABRERA: Do you know anything about the people who have been shot or injured beyond ...
MORALES: I do not.
CABRERA: ... who you described for us being a police officer and another official who also sustained an injury. We know you said the police officers are in surgery. Obviously, I hope and pray that everything ends up OK there. One person was killed, who was that?
MORALES: Again, I do not know anything about that fatality and I do not know anything about the injury and I do not know anything about the shooter at this time. So all of this has just transpired in the last few minutes and we are just hoping that this has come to an end and just asking everybody for their prayers.
CABRERA: OK. Well, Mayor, thank you very much for your time. We know you're working to find out more information as well and we appreciate you bringing us what you know at this time. Let me just reiterate what we just learned from Mayor Morales.
He says at least one person is dead, 20 plus people injured, some of the injuries may not be gunshot wounds because obviously it's been a chaotic situation, people fleeing, people very scared trying to get away, so there are may be some variations of injuries there, but he told us of one police officer who was shot undergoing surgery. Another police official also taken to the hospital.
And at this time, it's unclear exactly whether this situation is contained, but we know one person who they were calling. The active shooter has been killed. Midland Police tweeting out that they believe there is no active shooter at this time, but we're still working to get more information to confirm that there is not an ongoing situation.
Please stay with us. You're watching CNN. Another quick break and we'll come back continuing to monitor that press conference set to get underway any moment. Stay with us.
[18:48:32] CABRERA: We are back with a breaking news of a shooting in Odessa, Texas. The suspect, we are told, has been killed and there are several victims. At least one person is dead, another 21 injured. We know about at least two officials from the City of Midland who were among those injured. One of them a police officer currently in surgery.
President Trump has just tweeted on the situation. Here's what he says, "Just briefed by Attorney General Barr about the shootings in Texas. FBI and Law Enforcement is fully engaged. More to follow." So as we continue to monitor the situation in this area between Odessa
and Midland, Texas, 20 miles or so, I want to show you an incredible moment from a local news station there, KOSA. Watch this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There are some people running through the mall. We're not sure why. We need to see what this is.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Let's get going. Come on everybody.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Are we going to go back to programming?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (Inaudible) ...
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: OK. We're going to leave the setup. We're going to slip away just for a minute. We don't know what's going on. People are running through the mall, so we need to see what this is.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
[18:49:54] CABRERA: OK. So, obviously, they were caught off guard. Things happening live on air with them. Let me bring in Jonathan Wackrow. He is a CNN Law Enforcement Analyst and former Secret Service Agent. Jonathan, from this latest information we just got from the Mayor of Midland, it's still unclear if this is an active situation.
They say one person who was an active shooter is dead. But earlier we're reporting there may be more than one shooter. Take us inside how law enforcement would be handling this right now.
WACKROW: Well, law enforcement they've addressed one threat and they have put that down with the reports that one active shooter was killed. But we have to ascertain, is there an ongoing threat? Is there a secondary threat that we do not know about?
So that is a primary concern right now for law enforcement and then broadly there's the threat of a copycat attack, not just in Odessa but around the nation. So there's going to be a heightened sense of awareness from law enforcement agencies around the United States, fearful of a copycat attack.
Listen, again, we just saw a new paradigm in terms of how to launch these attacks from moving vehicles and evading police. Law enforcement needs to ensure that that is not repeated anywhere else. So, again, we're seeing this new dynamic threat environment come time and time again and challenging law enforcement in how they're going to address it.
CABRERA: OK. Jonathan Wackrow, please standby. I need to squeeze in another quick break here on CNN. You're watching breaking news unfolding. An active shooter situation in West Texas near Midland and Odessa, Texas.
One person who was shooting, we're told, is dead. Unclear if there are more shooters on the loose. We're continuing to get new information, awaiting a news conference with local officials here any moment. We'll be right back. Thank you for being with us. You're in the CNN NEWSROOM.
[18:55:11] CABRERA: Welcome back. As we continue to follow the breaking news out of West Texas, an active shooter situation and officials confirming the shooter. They believe at least one shooter is dead. Shimon Prokupecz is here with the latest.
PROKUPECZ: So we heard from the Mayor, your interview there with him. I think a couple of good pieces of detail, significant information. He said that the police, it appears, encountered the shooter and pulled him over and then he shot one of the police officer and then there was a chase that ensued somewhere along the chase.
As the suspect was running, there were more people shot and that's perhaps when he was firing at these vehicles and where people were shot and injured, 21 people injured, a lot of people in the panic, as you would imagine running, trying to flee the scene of gunshots, they get injured.
Two officers injured. One of them is now in surgery, but the good news is that they are expected to survive. They are non-life threatening injuries. But, of course, obviously a lot of panic out there for folks who were out today, driving on the road and then the people in and around this entertainment center there.
CABRERA: And this all ending at an entertainment center. The Mayor described it as a theater complex where officials engaged with this suspect and ultimately the suspect, this active shooter, they called him is dead. Right now we don't know anything about the person who was involved in this shooting.
It's still unclear if there are additional suspects or shooters still at large. We are still waiting a news conference. We'll have more information. We'll take a quick break. When we come back, we're going to hear from an eye witness who's going to walk us through the scary moments there in West Texas this afternoon. Stay with us.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: ... other victims after that. The victim then went eastbound back on 42nd towards Cinergy which is a local movie theater. And at that point was contacted by law enforcement, by officers from the Odessa Police Department, the Midland Police Department, the Texas Department of Public Safety and I'm sure others.
Again, this is a very fluid changing situation. So please understand that what I'm telling is not written in stone. These facts, this knowledge can change, OK? At that point the subject was contacted by law enforcement and exchange of gunfire happened and that subject is deceased at that location.
[19:00:07] We have law enforcement injured.