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Outrage Spills Across America In Fourth Night Of Protest; Protestors Clash With Secret Service Outside White House; Mayors Urge People To Stay Home As Demonstrations Turn Violent; Person Who Attend Memorial Day Party Tests Positive; Biden Calls On Americans To Confront Racial Injustice. Aired 7-8a ET

Aired May 30, 2020 - 07:00   ET



VICTOR BLACKWELL, CNN ANCHOR: There are some who are coming just because that's where the crowd is. There are some people coming that's just because that's where the cameras are. There are some people coming because it's an opportunity to loot, but let's not be lost by all of this in a larger conversation about what has brought us to this moment.

CHRISTI PAUL, CNN ANCHOR: Our breaking news coverage continues on NEW DAY right now.

ANNOUNCER: This is CNN breaking news.

BLACKWELL: Top of the hour now, so good to have you on what is an important time in our country this morning. I'm Victor Blackwell.

PAUL: And I'm Christi Paul.

BLACKWELL: Pain and anger across this country. Another night of protests after the death of George Floyd. We saw this in cities across the country. A black man died in police custody in Minneapolis this week. A white officer just knelt on his neck for almost nine minutes as he was in custody.

PAUL: And right now, one officer has been charged with Floyd's death. You see him there, Derek Chauvin. He's facing charges of third-degree murder and manslaughter. Protesters are demanding the other officers involved face charges as well.

BLACKWELL: So, Floyd's death was one part of the equation that led to what we are seeing across the country. This has been going on and simmering for quite a while now. And the recent incidents of Brianna Taylor, her killing; the killing of Ahmaud Arbery have led to this as well.

PAUL: In Atlanta, we saw just a snapshot of the outrage across the country protests outside our world headquarters, they were chaotic, people vandalize the CNN Center building, they smashed police vehicles, and they set cars on fire nearby.

BLACKWELL: CNN's Natasha Chen is with us just outside of where we are right now. Natasha, 20 states where we saw some type of organized response to what, what happened in Minneapolis.

NATASHA CHEN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Right Victor and Christi, what we're seeing that's similar across the cities is that a lot of them started out with an organized peaceful protest that then took a turn, and that's what happened here in Atlanta.

I want to bring you a little bit closer and warn you that there is a lot of profanity on the walls there and show you that the police officers there, security, have just now in the last 10 minutes or so put up that barrier around the CNN sign, potentially hoping to deter other people from getting closer today. But what we can see from what is written on the sign and the walls, there's a lot of anger toward government and toward police.


CHEN: Outraged protesters took to the streets around the country for the fourth straight night over the death of George Floyd. Fear and frustration with the U.S. justice system have led to peaceful protests in some cities across America and dangerous hats in others. In downtown Atlanta demonstrations quickly turned violent, with protesters burning a police car and vandalizing buildings at a mere CNN's World headquarters. Smoke bombs were thrown at officers and at least one person was taken into custody inside CNN Center. Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance-Bottoms expressed her outrage last night.

MAYOR KEISHA LANCE BOTTOMS (D), ATLANTA, GEORGIA: So, what I see happening on the streets of Atlanta, is not Atlanta. This is not a protest. This is not in the spirit of Martin Luther King Jr. This is chaos.

CHEN: Georgia's Governor Brian Kemp tweeted he activated as many as 500 National Guard troops to protect people and property in Atlanta and issued a state of emergency for Fulton County. In addition to the protest scene in downtown Atlanta, protesters also made their way north of the city to Lenox Square Mall located in the Buckhead community. There were reports of looting inside the mall.

The Atlanta Fire Department has been responding to multiple fires across the city overnight. A curfew was imposed in Minneapolis but protesters were still in the streets after tear gas and flashbangs were fired at crowds. At one point, protesters peacefully knelt in front of police in the city as a curfew went into effect in Minneapolis and St. Paul. 350 troopers cleared Minneapolis' Fifth Precinct after officials say shots were fired at officers but no officers were injured.

Dozens of protesters were arrested Friday in New York City after a standoff between police and protesters outside the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. The New York Police Department said multiple officers were injured though none of those injuries are life threatening. In Washington, D.C., the White House was temporarily locked down as crowds of mostly peaceful protesters arrived at Pennsylvania Avenue. Protesters could be seen clashing with Secret Service and tugging at barricades. The Los Angeles Police Department declared an unlawful assembly in

downtown L.A. The department told CNN protesters would be arrested if they disobeyed the order. Two Los Angeles police officers were injured in protests. The Oakland Police Department also declared an unlawful assembly in downtown Oakland. Demonstrators in San Jose, California blocked the freeway and smashed windows of random vehicles. California Highway Patrol said officers were hit by projectiles thrown by protesters on the freeway in San Jose.

Protesters took over portions of the Las Vegas Strip in Nevada and could be seen walking among the traffic. In downtown Dallas, thousands of protesters took to the streets, objects and rocks were thrown at officers and SWAT teams moved in. Dallas police fired rounds of tear gas into the crowd and use their cruisers and officers to protect police headquarters.


Houston Police officers were hospitalized after protests broke out downtown official say. CNN-affiliate KTRK reports dozens were arrested. CNN-affiliate WANE said gas was fired into a crowd protesting police brutality in Fort Wayne, Indiana. A group of protesters outside Boston Police District Four chanted: "Who do you protect?

Who do you serve?" All this as Derek Chauvin, the ex-officers seen with his knee on George Floyd's neck while Floyd was screaming and begging for his life has been arrested and charged with third degree murder and manslaughter. Floyd family attorney said the family is relieved the police officer was arrested but want a first-degree murder charge.


CHEN: And in Portland, Oregon, the mayor tweeted similar sentiments to what we heard from the Atlanta Mayor last night that the people burning property and looting that's just tearing their own city down. So, we're hearing from local officials across the country, understanding where this anger is coming from, but frustrated at how it's being expressed. Victor and Christi, back to you.

BLACKWELL: Natasha Chen for us there. Natasha, thanks so much.

PAUL: I want to go to Minneapolis where George Floyd, of course, was killed police fired tear gas, flashbangs at crowds. I want to CNN's Josh Campbell, he is there in Minneapolis. Josh, good to see you this morning. We heard that there's some commotion where you're at now, what's going on?

JOHN CAMPBELL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, that's right. Behind me, you see members of the Minnesota National Guard and just stop and think about that for a moment on the streets of the United States of America. You now have National Guard members, the citizens servants that are being called up to try to protect the public to try to re- instore some sense of peace. Now, let me tell you what these specific members are doing right now.

Their job isn't to push back a riot. Their job is to protect the firefighters that are here. A number of firefighters behind us fighting seven blazes in this area. This is not far from the area where George Floyd was killed.

Now, as they continue to knock out these fires, you see others resurfacing, re-flashing and members moving in a rolling fashion throughout this neighborhood that was just left in destruction. Again, the scene that you're seeing here: retail shops that are burned, just debris across the street, this is happening around the streets of Minneapolis and indeed in so many communities across the nation. We saw -- we've seen from coast to coast, a number of protests that have turned dangerous, that have turned to violence.

What we're hearing from peaceful protesters, those who are trying to express their outrage at the killing of a black man by police officers here in Minnesota is that they're trying to disassociate themselves with the kind of destruction that you're seeing behind us, this bedlam that we've seen in so many communities. As this destruction continues, we're hearing from politicians from elected officials trying to get the public to calm down to try to, you know, stay off the streets. Let's listen here to what the Minnesota Governor said and the Mayor of Minneapolis.


GOV. TIM WALTZ (D-MN): The situation is incredibly dangerous.

JACOB FREY, MAYOR OF MINNEAPOLIS: If you care about your community, you got to put this to an end. It needs to stop.


CAMPBELL: Now, of course, now, of course, the question remains about whether members of the community will heed those warnings. We know that on Friday, one of the police officers that was allegedly involved in this situation involving George Floyd, the officer that was depicted on that dramatic cellphone camera with his knee on Floyd's neck. That officer was arrested, charged with third degree murder. We're hearing from members of the public, however, that they want to see justice for the other three officers that were involved.

Prosecutors telling us that they're taking their case, slowly, methodically working through the evidence. Again, as this community calls for justice, we don't know whether these protests will continue but that's something that we're going to keep an eye out again on the streets of the United States of America, in so many communities destruction, that it was requiring members of the National Guard and police to come out in full force, Victor and Christi.

PAUL: And you know, Josh, you said something earlier that struck me because we're in the middle of a pandemic. There are people who are struggling with unemployment, there are small businesses that are struggling, just to stay open and you mentioned that a lot of the businesses that you saw that were set of fire are owned by black owners.


CAMPBELL: Yes, that is one theme that we continue to hear as we talk to members of the community who are staring at these images in disbelief. They're telling us that a lot of the victims, the people, as you mentioned that own these businesses are people of color.

In fact, that some of the locations you'll actually see spray paint on some of the boarded up windows that say that this is a black owned business, they're trying to message to the public that look you can you can let out your frustration, but don't do it violently, don't take our livelihood. We were over at the Third Precinct that was set ablaze outside just a little while ago.

A gentleman drove by, rolled down his window looking at us in disbelief, saying that in 54 years he has seen nothing like this in this area clearly devastated community that's clearly rocked by violence. Protesters that have turned to violence and destruction in order to try to get their message across.

PAUL: Josh Campbell, always appreciate your insight. Thank you for bringing us the latest.

BLACKWELL: Let's talk now with Astead Herndon, he is the National Politics Reporter with The New York Times. Astead, good morning to you.


BLACKWELL: So, in the political context, I mean, we have seen something like this localized before. We saw it in Baltimore, we saw in Ferguson. What is the ability to take this energy, this frustration, this refusal to accept what is happening, and turn it into a political movement that gets candidates elected, that changes police procedures beyond the immediacy of what we're seeing across the country?

HERNDON: Well, it often depends on how local leaders respond. I mean, there is oftentimes activism that comes from this community organizations that band together from this but that takes a little bit right now we have folks expressing anger in, in a kind of decentralized fashion. It should be noted that a lot some of these folks don't live in that community.

And, and the, the solution building, the process of building it up will be left. Unfortunately, often so it's as many people who weren't part of the process of bringing it doswn. And when we see in other communities I think about in Ferguon, in 2018, they elected a new county prosecutor in the kind of historic upset election, a progressive who kind of embraced the values of many of the social justice activism and other candidates.

We've seen D.A.s elected across the country in the kind of under -- in the, in the kind of wave that's gone under the radar, not necessarily Congress or the Senate. But we have seen more progressive district attorneys elected who have embraced the framework of activism. And I think that that might continue from this. It depends, though, it depends on how well local leaders respond. It depends on how well communities organize after sometimes that frustration does not automatically lead to electoral success in the future.

BLACKWELL: So, we've discussed this morning about how this is a national moment. And we saw in '92, when, when the riots in LA were happening after the acquittal of the officers who beat Rodney King. We heard from George H.W. Bush, we heard from President Obama during Ferguson and Baltimore, no message, no national, cohesive message from, from the President at this time.

HERNDON: That's true. And, and that is in line with what we know from President Trump throughout his administration. He has not shown real willingness to beef and "United in Chief" role that even some of his supporters have asked for him to do in a different context.

I think back to Charlottesville, you had those moments in which he would provide a kind of scripted statement, that that that were words of typical presidents past that condemned violence and called for togetherness, and then you had obviously the infamous very fine people on both sides statement that, that is the one that we remember. You could not get it, you could not get a consistent message of unity that came out of that moment.

And you're not going to probably get one that comes out of; that this one that has not been in the interest of the President. And even as he has called for a federal investigation into George Floyd's that he is called the video horrified.

What we saw was that that tweet that late sweet, the, the when the looting states, the shooting starts is a kind of similar as the moment that will be the thing that many people remember of, of throwing gas on an already exploding flame. And so that is kind of the VMO of this President has not necessarily been to lean in to the to the soothing role, but, but playing his his kind of cards, his political cards, which often act as a cudgel.

BLACKWELL: Yes, the president tried to clean that tweet up but I -- it was clear when he sent it a couple of nights ago. Is that Astead Herndon, National Politics Reporter of the New York Times, thanks so much for being with us this morning. Let's bring in down.

Samuel Sinyangwe, the Co-Founder of Campaign Zero offers research- based policy solutions to try to end police brutality in America. Samuel, good morning to you and I think I want to start here with you about the chokehold, about the knee restraint and the ability for law enforcement in or political leaders in Minneapolis, in Minnesota to decide today that we are not going to use that anymore. If there's so much outrage about the treatment of George Floyd, that is a decision that can happen. How common is that? Is the Minneapolis Police Department in the minority and still allowing those types of procedures and maneuvers?

[07:15:47] SAMUEL SINYANGWE, CO-FOUNDER, CAMPAIGN ZERO: So sadly, it is not. We did a research investigation looking at the hundred largest cities in America, reviewing their policies around use of force. What we found was everything from chokeholds to requiring officers to use de- escalation, to requiring officers to use every alternative available to them before they use deadly force.

Those policies are in place in some police departments like San Francisco, and Oakland, but they are not in place in the majority of major cities. And major cities are the places that tend to have more restrictive policies, then smaller cities in rural areas. So nationwide, the picture looks very grim. Most police departments have decided not to adopt policies that ban things like chokeholds, which as we saw, kill people.

BLACKWELL: You mentioned looking at the hundred largest cities, 91 police departments there that had killed someone, only 34 of them -- and this surprised me -- required officers to de-escalate situations before using force.

SINYANGWE: That's correct. So again, when we look at the policies of the police department, that is where they have written their values into a document that governs officer behavior. And what we see is that that those values are do not reflect the commitment to preserving human life to the highest extent possible, they do not reflect the commitment towards de-escalating situations towards using alternatives to dead force, and rather, they allow many police departments, indeed, the majority to use deadly force in situations that are clearly unnecessary.

BLACKWELL: Did you find a quantitative correlation between the inclusion of those policies and the numbers of people who were killed by the respective departments?

SINYANGWE: Yes, we did. So, we looked at the numbers of people killed by those departments, we looked at the policies. What we found was that there were eight types of policies, many of which I mentioned around chokeholds, de-escalation alternatives to deadly force, things like banning shooting at moving vehicles.

That the adoption of those policies was associated with a 72 percent reduction in killings by police. And not only that, but it was not only safer for individuals and communities who are less likely to be killed by the police, it was also safer for officers to who are less likely to use force. Force incidents being a situation that officers also have a higher risk of injury.

And so again, this is a win-win for both officers and communities. There's no reason why these policies can't be implemented in every single police department in America. And if we did that, we would substantially reduce police violence and save lives.

BLACKWELL: We have placed those eight policies up on our screen. And remember, this is not just a conversation about the Minneapolis Police Department, or the Ferguson Police Department, or the Baltimore Police Department, or LAPD, or NYPD, 100 largest cities in this country, I'd suggest you go and read Campaign Zero's study to find the department where you live and they've got a chart there to show which policies are in place in the department that serves your community. Samuel Sinyangwe, thanks so much for being with us this morning.

SINYANGWE: Thank you.

PAUL: Having these conversations is something that we have done too often, and we've all had those conversations, right? The black man or woman dying at the hands of police. Why does it keep happening? And when will it end? And how do we end it? CNN's Don Lemon has an important conversation coming up. "I Can't Breathe: Black Men Living and Dying in America," it is tomorrow at 8:00 p.m. Eastern.

BLACKWELL: There were some tense moments as the Secret Service clashed with protesters just yards from the White House. The clash between the agents and the protesters demanding justice will show you more of this.


PAUL: And Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance-Bottoms calling for peace after protesters burned a police car, vandalized buildings where a police precinct and CNN's World headquarters are located. It's right in front of there. We're going to take you there talk about it more. Stay close.


PAUL: The Secret Service and police clashed with protesters outside the White House last night.

BLACKWELL: The two sides, they wrestled over barricades. This was across the street from the White House. At times protesters, (INAUDIBLE) bottles at officers one point, the agents responded to aggressive pushing and yelling by spraying pepper spray there at the protesters.

PAUL: CNN's Kristen Holmes is with us now. Kristen, I know the President's response to this crisis, particularly his tweets, getting a lot of criticism. A lot of critics saying listen, he has not done enough to defuse this situation, and his language is not helping here. What is the White House saying about this?

KRISTEN HOLMES, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Christi and Victor. Well, before I get to the President's response, I do want to touch on those protests because this is not something that we see every day. And just to give a larger context, there are protests demonstrations, sign holding big kind of active scenes inside of Lafayette Park in front of the White House almost every single day but they never really get this aggressive.

This is something that we saw with these protesters taking down the barricades, really pushing against Secret Service officers. At one point, protesters were pushing against their riot shield. And this is a very secure location. It is the place where the President of the United States lives and they have done everything they can to secure this perimeter.


Remember, after the Oklahoma City bombing, they actually closed the street in front of the White House. And since then, they have put up even more barricades between the fence and that park, Lafayette Park, which is across the street from the White House there. This is a unique moment in history to see this kind of aggression outside of the White House.

It's not something we see every day. And Christie, as you mentioned, this really comes as the, there has been intense criticism against the White House against President Trump for a lack of a national response and for him, really seeming to stoke the flames instead of defuse the situation.

As we watched Minneapolis burn early in the morning on Friday, President Trump tweeted this, and I want to pull it up, you see this here: "THUGS," in all caps. And it says, "When the looting starts, the shooting starts."

And to give background on this, this was a phrase that was first used by a very controversial white police chief in Miami during the civil rights movement, it was something that was widely seen as potentially leading to police brutality, which this chief said he didn't care if his police squad was accused of.

And the message is clear, it's if you are looting you will be shot. It was so clear that Twitter actually marked it and said that it violated their violence policy, the new glorification, no threatening of violence. And a President Trump has said he never knew the origin of this. He wouldn't know a thing like that, that he'd heard it in multiple places. But this is just another instance on a reaction to a national crisis in which the White House has seemed delayed or out of step.

BLACKWELL: So, Kristen election year with these protests along with the coronavirus and pandemic and the struggling economy. What role is this playing into re-election politics?

HOLMES: Victor, this is going to play a huge role. We have to keep this in mind. The White House President Trump has been incredibly worried about November 2020. That Election Day particularly given the pandemic and the state of the economy. Now, they are looking at a different national crisis, and one, in which President Trump has had a spotty history with.

We know that he has come out and made remarks in the past that have made even Republicans feel uncomfortable and you're looking at a real break here because he needs his law enforcement base. But also, his campaign thinks that he needs to go outside of that and court minority voters. How is he going to walk this line of supporting as law enforcement base and the people who are at this point, the ones who are most likely to face police brutality?

BLACKWELL: All right, Kristen Holmes, thanks so much there from the White House.

PAUL: Well, we're going to talk about how Atlanta is reacting to violent protests last night. We heard from Rapper Killer Mike, we heard from the Mayor. We have a look at more of the scenes across the country from overnight, including what you're seeing here from Portland, Oregon.



BLACKWELL: What a dramatic video from the protests coming in overnight. Portland, Oregon up first. Police have fired tear gas at protesters there, and they say cars were set afire there, buildings as well. San Jose, California, protesters damaged cars on the freeway.

PAUL: And police in Detroit, say an officer was taken to the hospital after that officer was hit by a rock. Another was on a bike and almost run over by a car, they say. That driver is under arrest now.

In Indianapolis, police say, three officers were hurt during protests as was a protester who is trying to kick in some glass. The city's mayor noted the chaos happened after a larger peaceful protest had ended.

BLACKWELL: To Georgia now, the National Guard has been activated. The governor declared a state of emergency.

PAUL: CNN's Nick Valencia has more from outside CNN's world headquarters in Atlanta.

NICK VALENCIA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: What started as a peaceful demonstration, didn't take long to turn violent. CNN's Center was one of the targets of the frustration of the demonstrators.

They showed up here in solidarity with the demonstrations that have been happening in Minneapolis. Hours after arriving here, though, at CNN Center, they began breaking windows, throwing rocks.

Just look at some of the items that were being tossed towards the police line. In fact, our crew here, my photographer, William Walker, and producer Kevin Conlon. Were here as police had a standoff with demonstrators.

That video that you're witnessing right now, looking at now, it was intense, to say the least. This scene was chaotic, it was -- we saw officers, at least, two officers injured in clashes with demonstrators.

Look at these windows busted open by an individual who's using a skateboard to smash open the windows. And there was a point and a moment where it appeared as though the demonstrators might actually gain entrance into the CNN Center.

Eventually, that crowd was dispersed by the police using tear gas canisters. They were eventually able to pull the demonstrators back. But it did take hours before the unrest that we saw unfold, and downtown Atlanta was finally cleared from the streets.

Reporting at CNN Center, I'm Nick Valencia.

BLACKWELL: Overnight we also heard from Atlanta's mayor, Keisha Lance Bottoms, who told the protesters that they were disgracing this city by looting.

PAUL: Here is part of what she said.


BOTTOMS: When I saw the murder of George Floyd, I hurt like a mother would hurt. And on yesterday when I heard there were rumors about violent protests in Atlanta, I did what a mother would do. I called my son and I said, where are you? I said, I cannot protect you and black boys shouldn't be out today.


BOTTOMS: So, you're not going to out concern me and out care about where we are in America. I wear this each and every day, and I pray over my children each and every day. So, what I see happening on the streets of Atlanta is not Atlanta. This is not a protest, this is not in the spirit of Martin Luther King Jr. This is chaos.

You are disgraced in our city, you are disgracing the life of George Floyd and every other person who has been killed in this country. We are better than this. We're better than this as a city, we are better than this as a country. Go home.


PAUL: And also there, rapper and activist Killer Mike, who called for an end of the violence.

BLACKWELL: Now, listen to part of what he said.


KILLER MIKE, RAPPER, ACTIVIST: I'm the son of an Atlanta City police officer. I got a lot of love and respect for police officers. I watched the white officer assassinate a black man and I know that tore your heart out. I woke up wanting to see the world burn down yesterday because I'm tired of seeing black men die.

We don't want to see targets burning. We want to see the system that sets up for systemic racism burnt to the ground. So, I'm duty-bound to be here to simply say, that it is your duty not to burn your own house down for anger with an enemy. It is your duty to fortify your own house so that you may be a house of refuge in times of organization.


BLACKWELL: We're also hearing from a really powerful message from this father in Iowa. He took his children to protests in Des Moines. PAUL: And he said he wanted to teach them. And specifically, his son, the difference between right and wrong. We do want to forewarn you here though, don't you get caught off guard about some of the language that's in the background. Here we go.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're not tied into. I want my kids to be (INAUDIBLE). They never experience than my kid. I want them to be able to know what is right from wrong. Wrong is not going to help somebody's (INAUDIBLE) that has have nothing to do. That is not enough for what's going on around here.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Because I got a black start. He's got to be prepare to come out in this world to feel around what's going on. And I (INAUDIBLE) there.


PAUL: Hard place to be, Victor. A dad trying to teach a son in the middle of all of that.

BLACKWELL: Yes, but that conversation needs to happen.

PAUL: Yes.

BLACKWELL: Boys, I think often, we call especially, black children, we call our 11 and 12 and 13-year-old young men, they are still boys. And they should be allowed to leave that part of their life without being rushed into adulthood, but those realities come far sooner for many children in this country who are children of color, black children than they do for others.

But when they are boys, have those conversations, take them to these types of demonstrations, to these protests, I think it's important that the conversations happen that they see it, because the reality is coming, and it's best to prepare. Prepare for them.

PAUL: Yes, I'm into that.

Listen, we do have more ahead. There are scenes of protests around the country that are just coming in. We know in New York, there's a clash between protesters and police that happened, it did become violent. We'll show you exactly what we've discovered. Stay closed.



BLACKWELL: More than 102,000 people across the country have died from the coronavirus. A huge devastating number. And more states are entering new phases of reopening. Let's go to California, the Supreme Court has rejected a request from a church to block limitations on the number of people who can attend religious services. The decision is the response to a lawsuit that churches said they were being treated differently. This is after the state saw its largest single-day spike in cases just last week.

PAUL: And in Missouri, a person who was among the massive crowds partying there over Memorial Day weekend, I know you remember these pictures. Well, that person tested positive for coronavirus now.

According to officials, the Boone County resident visited several bars and businesses over the holiday weekend.

BLACKWELL: Let's move forward on the "BREAKING NEWS" now. New York City police say that dozens of protesters were arrested, officers injured, and violence intensified throughout the night.

PAUL: Specifically, in Brooklyn, New York, demonstrators pelted officers with water bottles and other objects. Obviously, expressing their outrage. And not just in wake of George Floyd's death, but this carries with it the deaths of so many young men, Eric Garner, Michael Brown, Laquan McDonald, Tamir Rice, Ahmaud Arbery.


PAUL: All of this happening, of course, while New York City's mayor was urging calm. CNN's Polo Sandoval is in New York. So, give us a sense of what you're seeing now, the morning after.

POLO SANDOVAL, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Christi, I can tell you that this morning, New York City officials are certainly going to be coming together, trying to evaluate exactly what if anything can be done to try to prevent things from spiraling out of control. And for forgive us further the background noise, it's happening here on the streets of New York as, of course, that is a sign of normalcy right here in Manhattan.

But I can tell you what took place yesterday. What we saw was this peaceful demonstration that began to gather in Manhattan. Eventually making its way to neighboring borough of Brooklyn. And that is where officials saying that things took a turn, getting quite tense at one point, pepper spray had to be used, there were multiple NYPD vehicles that were vandalized, and at the end of the day, there were dozens who were hurt, both law enforcement, and also some of those protesters multiple arrests.

This morning, we also trying to find out exactly how many. But it certainly, these pictures do speak for themselves. They've been, again, we need to remind people this started as a peaceful demonstration in Manhattan and then eventually making its way to Brooklyn here.

Look, where we're hearing from city leaders as they completely recognize where this is coming from. This is that anger, the frustration, and that growing call for justice not just in the death of George Floyd, but also, previous cases as well. So it's certainly what we expect to see potentially again, another wave of demonstrations. And what we're getting from officials is simply that plea for calm, as people do have the right to gather.

And then, finally, I should mention is there is also that other issue that it is New York City, this was the epicenter of that coronavirus pandemic at one point, and we're slowly sort of on that improving curve.

And so, the concern when you see so many people gathering is that, that, that, would lead to any potential spread when were only days away from phase one of reopening. So, authorities certainly recommending if anybody does head out, does participate in any kind of peaceful protests, that they wear that masks, and if possible, of course, social distancing.

But when you see these large masses, these large crowds, you can understand why that's nearly impossible.

PAUL: Yes, no doubt about it. I did see there are a lot of people wearing masks though. So, maybe they are still being obviously mindful of it there. Polo Sandoval in New York for us. We're grateful for you. Polo, thank you.

Former Vice President Joe Biden is calling on all Americans to confront racial injustice in the U.S. Coming up, his response to the killing of George Floyd and what he said to Floyd's family.



BLACKWELL: All right, pushing forward on the breaking news and getting you more video. As we saw, so many protests and demonstrations across the country. Now let's go to Detroit. Fires you see here in the streets as the protests turned violent. Dozens of demonstrators arrested in this city, and police say a 19-year-old was killed as shots were fired into a crowd. They do not know yet if the person was a protester.

PAUL: And in Los Angeles, there were large groups of protesters smashing windows, setting fires in the streets. The LAPD telling CNN they were, "fully deployed" and two officers were injured during the events and transported them to hospitals. Then, let's go to Charlotte.

BLACKWELL: Yes, and let's show you here as the gas canisters deploy to the streets to try to control the protesters. Demonstrators were arrested after police say they threw some rocks at officers and at their cars.

PAUL: Now, former Vice President Joe Biden has a message regarding George Floyd's death. He calls it the latest in a series of injustices. Take a listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) JOE BIDEN (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: The original sin of this country still stains our nation today, and sometimes we managed overlooked it. We just pushed forward with a thousand other tasks in our daily life, but it's always there. And weeks like this, we see it plainly that we're a country with an open wound and none of us can turn away. None of us can be silent. None of us can any longer can we hear the words, I can't breathe and do nothing.

You know we can't fail victims like. You know what Martin Luther King called the appalling silence of good people. Every day, African Americans go about their lives with a constant anxiety and trauma wondering who would be next.

Imagine if every time your husband or son, wife or daughter left the house, you feared for their safety from bad actors and bad police. Imagine if you had to have that talk with your child about not asserting your rights, taking the abuse handed out to them. So, just so, they could make it home.

Imagine having a police called on you just for sitting in Starbucks or renting an Airbnb or watching birds. You know, this is the norm black people in this country deal with. They don't have to imagine it.

The anger and frustration and the exhaustion, it's undeniable, but that's not the promise of America. It's long past time that we made the promise of this nation real for all people.


PAUL: Former vice-president, says he spoke to the family of George Floyd and complimented them for their courage and their grace during this time.


BLACKWELL: Still ahead, the country plunging into a crisis of violent protests. These demonstrations breaking out across the country, the looting that's happening. The death of George Floyd, the catalyst for a lot of what we're seeing. More of our special coverage just ahead.


ANNOUNCER: This is CNN Breaking News.

BLACKWELL: Good morning, I'm Victor Blackwell.

PAUL: And I'm Christi Paul. So grateful to have you here. Overnight, there was outrage that filled the streets, anger that boiled over in more than a dozen cities. For a fourth night now, protesters smashed windows, set vehicles ablaze, clash with officers. All of it, of course, sparked by racial inequality that spark by the death of George Floyd.