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Gunman Shoots Three People At Arizona Mall; Denmark's School Plan Could Be A Model For The World; Cruise Ship Workers Stranded At Sea Amid Pandemic. Aired 7:30-8a ET

Aired May 21, 2020 - 07:30   ET






JOSH CAMPBELL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Now, one of the witnesses in this incident was a state senator who was tweeting out what he was seeing, saying that he saw an armed terrorist with an AR-15 conduct this attack. He went on to say that he saw two of the victims.

Now, police have been working throughout the night scouring the shopping mall. They've gotten assistance from the FBI and from the ATF and other agencies looking for additional victims. We're told that there were none. Also, looking for evidence.

Now, again, as far as the shooter, there is no motive yet. That investigation continues.

Police say they are aware of a social media post that has been online. We talked to one person who allegedly posted a video. Now that has not been confirmed and we're not showing that video. We're not going to use this network to give notoriety to the ranting of an alleged mass murderer.

But I do want to show you one graphic image from this video. This depicts what we've seen in so many of these types of incidents, a high-powered assault-type weapon. Again, this video has not yet been confirmed.

Police say that they are asking the public for any information that may assist them in this investigation.

Just a terrifying incident there playing out in Glendale with people at a shopping center that were faced by gunfire -- John.

JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: All right, Josh, please keep us posted as this develops throughout the morning.

Also new this morning, CNN has learned that the State Department has briefed some Republican senators about why President Trump fired inspector general Steve Linick -- or at least why he claims that he fired him.

It comes after Secretary of State Mike Pompeo defended his push to have Linick fired but refused to explain why.

CNN's Kylie Atwood joins us now with the very latest. So what is their explanation?

KYLIE ATWOOD, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPONDENT: Yes, so you're right. Some Republican senators say that they have been briefed, at least in part, with regard to the decision to fire inspector general Steve Linick. They say that Sec. Pompeo wanted someone who was more in line with the goals of the State Department.

And they are also saying that there were reasons to believe that there were leaks coming out of the inspector general's office about ongoing investigations, though there has been no evidence that have backed up those allegations.

Now, yesterday, Sec. Pompeo defended his push for Trump to fire Steve Linick, but he didn't put any more meat on the bones. He didn't give us any rationale for why he had made that recommendation to the president.

Now, it is important to note that he claimed that this was not retaliation for any of the ongoing inspector general investigations that focus in on the secretary himself. But let's take a look and remind folks what those investigations actually are.

So, first, there is an investigation ongoing into Pompeo using a political appointee for personal tasks -- things like dog walking.

Second, there's an investigation into Pompeo breaking rules and essentially fast-tracking an $8 billion arms sale to Saudi Arabia, which essentially went against the advice from members of Congress.

And third, there are allegations, though there's not a formal inspector general investigation, into questions from Democrats about Pompeo and his private elite dinners hosted here at the State Department.

So there is a lot of questions that are ongoing. Pompeo says he will provide the answers to the appropriate people.

BERMAN: All right, interesting. Why haven't we heard from the inspector general, himself?

ATWOOD: Well, CNN has made an effort to reach out to Steven Linick but we haven't heard from him.

And we have to consider the fact that even though he was fired by President Trump late Friday night, that firing isn't effective until 30 days after the notification went to Congress. So there are a few weeks here where technically, he's still on the job, though there are questions about how much he is actually doing that work. And the State Department has already announced someone who is close to

the White House who is going to be taking over the role officially.

BERMAN: Yes. I still have to say what we don't know about this is notable, still, and the Secretary of State's story has seemed to change some and that is notable as well.

Kylie Atwood, we really appreciate your reporting on this. Thanks very much.

We're just days away now from a holiday weekend, so how safe is it to go to the beach or host a barbecue? We have some important tips for how to navigate this weekend, next.



ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: So let's talk about how to see our loved ones this weekend and how to stay safe. How are we supposed to approach barbecues, beaches, and socializing this holiday weekend?

Joining us now is Erin Bromage. He's an epidemiology expert and biology professor at UMass Dartmouth who has a wildly popular blog with super-helpful tips on how to stay safe during coronavirus. Professor, it's great to see you.

We should -- we should mention that your -- one of your recent blog posts, you had started just for friends to help them try to stay safe. It mushroomed to now being seen by 17 million people. So we -- you are here with us just in the nick of time as people are trying to reengage this weekend somehow.

So let's just dive right in with people's biggest questions.

Backyard barbecue, yay or nay? Can we do it safely or not?

ERIN BROMAGE, BIOLOGY PROFESSOR AND IMMUNOLOGY SPECIALIST, UMASS DARTMOUTH: We can do it safer but never safely enough. We are looking at moving around a little bit more and having these barbecues, if we're doing them, make sure that we're having the barbecues outdoors with as much space as we possibly can.

CAMEROTA: OK, so let's talk about specifics. For instance, you say no shared chips. If you're inviting a neighbor's family over or you're inviting the grandparents over, you want them to do what?

BROMAGE: Yes, so it's bring your own food.


As soon as you've got a shared bowl of chips, especially when you're adding young kids into the mix as well, hands go into it, hands go in mouth, hands go back into the bowl. And we all have that little bit of an ick factor in general with double-dipping and things like that, but when you have an infectious disease running through the community we really need to stop that.

Bring your own food.

CAMEROTA: So everybody brings their own food and everybody brings their own plastic utensils.

You say no communal tray. So nothing -- no hamburgers and hot dogs come off the grill and onto a communal tray that can be passed. Instead, what do you want people to do?

BROMAGE: Yes. So if you've got a barbecue and you're doing hamburgers, you're doing hot dogs, we know that heat kills the virus very effectively. So if someone is going to communally cook hot food on the barbecue, it comes straight off the barbecue, straight onto the person's plate.

CAMEROTA: OK, understood.

You say in terms of where people should sit, as a family unit, you can all sit together. But from a -- anybody from a different household, even relatives, you put them where?

BROMAGE: On the opposite side of the biggest thing you can put between them. A big table -- it can be a -- if you've got the space and it's safe enough you can do a small fire pit in front of you. Anything that can separate families physically and stop people from merging -- you know, coming closer together. We have to maintain that physical distance.

CAMEROTA: Are masks needed at a background barbecue?

BROMAGE: If you've got loud friends, yes. Again, if you can maintain the distance while you're outside, you're -- you are fine without masks unless you're in an area that is a bit of a hotspot at the moment. Have them with you.

But unless it's getting loud -- if there's -- you know the more households you have, then you may want to think about having masks. But for nice quiet afternoon gathering between two households, masks should be there. But they're not necessarily needed to be used unless someone has a high risk.

CAMEROTA: Yes. I mean, the problem is you never know when somebody's going to come within six feet of you. You intend to stay six feet apart but sometimes somebody passes you on the way to the door.

And that brings me to my next question. Can people go inside your house to use the bathroom?

BROMAGE: So we've talked about this before. Indoors are the most risky environment we have for transmission of this virus but people need to use the bathrooms. So there's things that you can do to make it just a little bit safer.

Have all the doors towards the bathroom open so no one has to touch handles, no one needs to open and close things going through. And then when they get in the bathroom they can use just a piece of tissue paper or toilet paper to close the door so they don't have to touch the handle and then reopen it. Put the seat down, flush, and then just walk back out.

CAMEROTA: And you say make sure you put the seat down before flushing because as we now know, things get aerosolized.

OK, can people go in the pool?

BROMAGE: Yes. So, the pool is one that we all want to be doing. And there was a really nice article that came out yesterday that said that pool water that is properly maintained -- and that is important -- properly maintained will be safe. There's no real thought that the virus can be transmitted through properly-maintained pool water.

But if you're in that pool, social distancing becomes important again. Be on the other side of the pool while you're sitting there having a conversation with someone from a different household.

CAMEROTA: And by properly maintain you mean enough chlorine -- that that would help in the pool.

BROMAGE: Right, have to have enough chlorine and it has to be looked after well.


You say soccer good, football bad. So explain what we're supposed to do --

BROMAGE: Well, soccer not with --

CAMEROTA: -- in the backyard.

BROMAGE: Yes, soccer not with a scrimmage. You don't want to be bringing people close together, but kicking a ball along the ground across the -- from one side of the yard to the other, there's not really an issue with that. But as soon we're dealing with something going from hand-to-hand-to-hand-to-hand, you do increase that risk a little bit of the transmission of this virus.

CAMEROTA: OK, very quickly, you say that alcohol complicates things. So what are you suggesting people do if they imbibe this weekend?

BROMAGE: Just be careful with it. When we drink a little we get a little closer, we get a little more touchy. Hands come touch shoulders. We just need to be careful with that.

Make sure that with the drinks and with the plates and cutlery you've got somewhere to dispose of things straightaway because mouths on glasses, mouths on cups, bottles, that is a potential spot where the host or hostess of the party can become infected themselves. So make sure you've got a plan for getting rid of the garbage -- getting rid of everything at the end of this.

CAMEROTA: If people want to see more of your tips and advice they can go to


Professor, thank you very much. We really appreciate you being on.

BROMAGE: Thank you, Alisyn, for having me this morning.


BERMAN: Really helpful.

So we want to remember some of the more than 93,000 Americans lost to coronavirus.

Dr. Charlie Mahoney devoted his entire career, starting in 1982, to the University Hospital of Brooklyn, New York. Given his age and health problems, the 62-year-old critical care attending physician could have taken a backseat in the pandemic, but his family and colleagues say he was a doctor first and always and wouldn't hear of it.

Jesus Gutierrez served the Little Village neighborhood of Chicago as owner of Varelas Corner Store for more than 40 years. Known as Don Chuy, the Guadalajara native presided over a store that was a community institution as much as it was a place to buy milk and eggs. Jesus Gutierrez was 79.

Twenty-three-year-old Deshaun Taylor died of coronavirus, his family says, after a Chicago hospital sent him home twice. His sister Ebony says he suffered from asthma and diabetes but the hospital sent him home even after diagnosing him with pneumonia. Ebony calls it a tremendous loss for the family and his 4-year-old daughter.

The hospital says it cannot comment because of privacy laws.

We'll be right back.



BERMAN: So in the United States this morning, growing questions about how or even whether to open schools up in the fall.

Now, schools in Denmark were the first in Europe to reopen last month. They're accelerating it now. In order to maintain social distancing, Danish educators are thinking outside the box and maybe, perhaps, it's a model for the rest of the world.

CNN's Frederik Pleitgen live with the most beautiful standup location that I've seen in a long time in Copenhagen. Fred, tell us exactly what's going on there.

FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Hi there, John, and you're absolutely right. The Danes also faced with exactly that same problem that so many around the world are facing. If you're going to reopen those schools, how do you find enough space for all the students with the physical distancing measures? It's very, very difficult.

The Danes, indeed, are getting very creative with that. They're moving some of the classes, for instance, into old amusement parks and some even into churches.

Have a look at this.


PLEITGEN (voice-over): Math lessons from the pulpit. When the Veksoe School outside Copenhagen didn't have enough space for all kids because of physical distancing rules, the local church became a classroom. Students don't mind.

MARIE ERIKSEN BOEGNER, STUDENT: It's different but I like it and we learn a lot.

PLEITGEN (voice-over): To help with their statistics lessons they needed a place with lots of numbers, so they just moved to the church's graveyard.

Denmark's government is encouraging as many lessons as possible outside, the teacher says.

ANETTE DA CRUZ, TEACHER, VEKSOE SCHOOL: We had to study statistics and math, so instead of doing it inside the school, now we can use the cemetery. They can collect data and we can work with it, and they get much more curious.

PLEITGEN (voice-over): Denmark is rapidly reopening its schools under very strict hygiene measures. Arrival times are staggered so there aren't too many kids at school at once.

You won't see students or teachers wearing masks, though. Instead, here at the Hendriksholm School in Copenhagen, they use police tape to make sure children don't cross paths on the stairs, and in the schoolyard children should keep at least three feet apart. And they wash their hands and sanitize at least every two hours, a new experience for many.

ANDY CHANG JOHANSEN, STUDENT: It is a little hard to get used to but when you get used to it, it definitely feels more normal.

PLEITGEN (voice-over): With that concept, Denmark first brought the youngest students back to school and now, the older ones as well.

The head of secondary education at the Hendriksholm School, Jimmy Adetunji, says the key to making it work is trusting the kids to be responsible.

JIMMY SKOV GLASDAM ADETUNJI, HEAD OF SECONDARY EDUCATION, HENDRIKSHOLM SCHOOL: If you follow the guidelines given, if you keep distance, if you make sure to wash your hands, keep sanitizing, coughing in your sleeve and not in hour hand, and so on and so forth, I think we'll be safe.

PLEITGEN (voice-over): With many parents fearing for their kid's safety, the Danish government worked with parents and teachers groups to build support for the plan, the country's education minister tells me.

PERNILLE ROSENKRANTZ-THEIL, DANISH HEALTH MINISTER: Without that dialogue, I think many people would have felt that it wasn't safe to send the children to school. I think the guidelines that we would have made wouldn't have hit the target and then we would have outbreaks in different schools. And that would have made the other parents uncertain about the situation.

PLEITGEN (voice-over): Opening schools does not appear to have led to a spike in coronavirus infections in Denmark. And while some might find math lessons on a graveyard a bit awkward -- well, so far, Danes say their way of bringing school back is working.


PLEITGEN: And it continues to work here in Denmark. As we said, the Danes are accelerating their way of reopening the schools. As of next week, even the oldest grades are going to go back to school.

It's still an emergency curriculum. They have about four to five hours per day. But I think any parent around the world who has had their kids home for several months now would be happy to have school for four to five hours every day at this point, Alisyn.

CAMEROTA: Understood, Fred. Yes, I think that that is a consensus. Thank you very much.

So, as you know, cruise ships have been hotbeds of coronavirus outbreaks. Now tens of thousands of cruise ship workers are stranded at sea, barred from disembarking. CNN's Randi Kaye spoke to some of them who say their time and money is running out.


JOANNE GARDNER, TRAVEL SPECIALIST, HOLLAND AMERICA LINE (via telephone): We're really frustrated because many of our countries haven't allowed us to come home.

RANDI KAYE, CNN ANCHOR AND CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Joanne Gardner spoke with us by phone from her room onboard the Amsterdam, part of the Holland America cruise line. She's one of a reported 100,000 or more cruise ship workers stranded at sea since the start of the pandemic.


Joanne was docked in Manila, hoping to get home to Chicago.

GARDNER: I'm ready, I'm ready.

KAYE (voice-over): Joanne and her husband work as future cruise consultants. They've been without passengers onboard for more than two months but have remained onboard stranded at sea due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The CDC issued a no sail order, mandating that crew members can only leave the ship if they are transported by chartered aircraft or private vehicles -- no rental cars or taxis and no commercial flights.

GARDNER: You can imagine not only the logistics but the cost of that.

KAYE (voice-over): For weeks, Joanne says she has had to pass the time while also social distancing from the other 1,200 or so crew members onboard.

GARDNER: A lot of us are readers. We sit around our various spots and socially-distance read and chat.

KAYE (voice-over): The pandemic has stranded thousands of crew members on various ships around the world. The United States Coast Guard told me it's monitoring 59 cruise ships in U.S. waters carrying about 39,000 crew members. Another 25 ships are moored in U.S. ports with about 11,500 crew onboard, all waiting to get home.

GARDNER: Most of us are not being paid anymore. It's really frustrating. And the governments -- all the governments just don't care. They put us in a -- put us out there as pariahs.

KAYE (voice-over): Caio Saldanha has also been stranded at sea for about two months. He's from Brazil and works as a deejay for Celebrity Cruises, part of Royal Caribbean.

CAIO SALDANHA, DISC JOCKEY, ROYAL CARIBBEAN: We have this feeling that we are prisoners.

KAYE (voice-over): For a while, Caio and his fiance shared this small, windowless room which he says caused anxiety and terrible nightmares.

SALDANHA: We cannot get out at any chance. It was like a torture.

KAYE (voice-over): Caio hopes to go home next week and find work. He says he's only getting paid $13.00 a day, which will max out at $400.

SALDANHA: We are feeling bad. Our psychological side is degrading day-by-day.

KAYE (voice-over): In an e-mail, Royal Caribbean told us getting all of our crew home safely remains our top priority, adding they've repatriated over 17,000 crew members. The cruise line says its actions have been guided by medical experts and authorities.

Meanwhile, Melinda Mann is happy to be home in Georgia after nearly two months at sea. A youth program manager for Holland America, she got home May eighth.

MELINDA MANN, YOUTH PROGRAM MANAGER, HOLLAND AMERICA: I definitely felt like a prisoner. I'm an American citizen. You can't just lock me out of the country when I've done nothing wrong.

KAYE (voice-over): Carnival Corporation, which oversees Holland America, has told CNN earlier this month logistical problems made it tough to get employees home. In a statement, Carnival Corporation said, "This has become more difficult in recent days because of port closings and other travel restrictions, but we continue to make strong progress."

Randi Kaye, CNN, West Palm Beach, Florida.


CAMEROTA: Oh my gosh, John. It is hard to imagine a more Kafkaesque scenario where you are trapped on a cruise ship with no known date off, and worried about getting sick and worried about going crazy.

BERMAN: Look, my wife and I always talk about we can't hardly remember the beginning of all of this, but imagine if we were on a ship in a small room for the whole time. Honestly, terrifying.

CAMEROTA: I can't believe that they actually were as calm recounting their experience to Randi as they were. I mean, he described the mental deterioration that they are experiencing, but they -- he did it quite calmly.

Wow, we hope that they get relief. We'll bring you updates as we have them.

Also, there's new unemployment numbers coming this hour, so NEW DAY continues right now.


DR. TEDROS ADHANOM GHEBREYESUS, DIRECTOR-GENERAL, WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION: In the last 24 hours, there have been 106,000 cases reported to WHO, the most in a single day since the outbreak began.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Tensions simmering between the White House and the CDC.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: These are health experts. So if you aren't listening to the leaders of the CDC, I'm not sure who you will listen to.

REPORTER: Do you think Robert Redfield is doing a good job?


ERICA HILL, CNN ANCHOR AND NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: A 50-state experiment now in full swing.

GOV. ANDREW CUOMO (D), NEW YORK: If people get arrogant, if people get cocky, you will see that infection rate go up. This has always been about what we do.

(END VIDEO CLIP) ANNOUNCER: This is NEW DAY with Alisyn Camerota and John Berman.

BERMAN: Good morning, everyone. Welcome to our viewers in the United States and all around the world. This is NEW DAY.

And a brand-new interview overnight. The embattled CDC director Robert Redfield warns of a new attack of coronavirus in the fall and winter and does not rule out the possibility of a new lockdown.