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Total Pandemonium Seen in U.S. Capital; Domino Effect of Floyd's Death Palpable from Around the Globe; People are Calling to Stop Racial Injustices; Anger and Protests Erupt Across United States Over the Death of George Floyd Under Police Custody; Fighting Coronavirus Pandemic Across the Americas; United States Has a Long History of Protesting Racial Injustice; Police Officer Empathizes with Front-Line Protesters. Aired 3-4a ET

Aired June 1, 2020 - 03:00   ET




MICHAEL HOLMES, CNN ANCHOR: Hello and welcome to our viewers joining us here in the United States and all around the world. I'm Michael Holmes.

NATALIE ALLEN, CNN ALLEN: And I'm Natalie Allen.

And we begin with the sixth night of demonstrations over the death of an African American man in police custody.

HOLMES: Those protests, once again, descending into chaos in some places including the nation's capital. You are looking at scenes there from not long ago, Washington now under a curfew like so many other cities in the U.S.

ALLEN: Protesters reached the gates of the White House. You can see how close they are. News emerged Sunday that the president and his family went to the White House bunker for a time this weekend.

HOLMES: Many demonstrations, most, in fact, were peaceful like this one in New York City. Diverse groups coming together to stand for equality and to demand change.

ALLEN: It has been exactly one week since the incident that started this week of outrage across the country. George Floyd was detained by Minneapolis officers on May 25th, a week ago today. There were still sizeable crowds on the streets of New York and Washington until just a short time ago. We're all over it.

HOLMES: Yes. In a moment we'll get to the scene in New York with our Shimon Prokupecz. But first, here's Alex Marquardt from the nation's capital.

ALEXANDER MARQUARDT, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: The park has been completely cleared out. And everyone continues to run away from the park as the police are advancing with tear gas, with pepper spray. Air is very heavy with both.

And it clearly seems that as a reaction to those fires that were set, to the violence that those agitators were stepping up, the police, and the various police with both federal and local said enough is enough and have, it looks like from my vantage point at the northwest corner of the part, pushed everybody out.

And it is just an eerie, eerie scene of a smoke-filled air with lots of different kinds of light. Lights from the siren, lights from the fires, lights from the flood lamps that the police have used to illuminate the protesters.

So, the police, it appears from here have successfully pushed the protesters out of the park away from the immediate vicinity of the White House. Again, we are at the northwest corner, for anyone who knows Washington, that is at 8th Street and Connecticut Avenue.

And the protesters there some as we were saying before who we are certainly agitated and trying to cause trouble, there are others who want to keep this peaceful. And they, I'm looking at them now, are putting their hands up saying hands up don't shoot.

SHIMON PROKUPECZ, CNN CRIME AND JUSTICE REPORTER: But this has escalated. This group, which was at first in the thousands, marched from Brooklyn over the Manhattan Bridge, they went through Soho Park and there were arrests made in Soho. It was relatively quiet here.

We were here just moments before the crowd showed up and it was very quiet, peaceful, and all of a sudden, the group got here and police just rushed in.

I just want you to hear here, the protesters now chanting shame at the police. And the police are just lined up here. As you can see in their helmets. And, you know, there are -- it seems that police are trying to push the crowd back, but so far, you know, with the chanting I'm here, here we see police pushing more people back.

And so, this is how -- this is how it works. The police will move in, Chris, and tell them to move back.

CHRIS CUOMO, CNN HOST: All right. Shimon, I hear you. I hear you. Let's just watch the scene here for a second so people can absorb it for themselves.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They are pushing us. They are pushing us.

PROKUPECZ: The police are pushing us back.

HOLMES: I want to take you back to Portland, Oregon and check in with what has been a dramatic last hour or so. There is a very large demonstration in downtown Portland, and police were being pelted with, they said, they are being pelted with objects, missiles they said, and so they then fired off tear gas.

[03:05:09] A lot of people who were peacefully protesting weren't involved in the throwing of missiles, ended up having to flee across the park and into the streets. The drama is still continuing. In fact, less than 30 seconds ago, Portland police tweeting out that the people are being advised that the curfew is in effect for the entire city of Portland, and unlawful assembly is now being declared downtown, and the tweet says, leave now, exclamation point.

So, Portland police, obviously taking this very seriously now and moving into a street clearing operation. You can see that there are some tear gas there being dispersed as well to get this crowd off the streets.

Keeping an eye on this, and we will continue to bring you any developments.

Meanwhile, I want to show you some shocking new images that have been coming out of Minnesota as well. I'm going to show you large crowds of people scrambling to get out of the way of a truck that drove head on into the protests. This was on Sunday. Obviously, hours ago now.

The demonstrators then chased a truck down, as you can see there, remarkably. CNN understands no one was hurt. I want to show you another view of what happened. This is on the ground. And you can see there, it was moving at some speed there, you get a sense of how fast it was going.

Obviously, people are pretty worried at the time. The 35-year-old driver, being held without bail. He is accused of assault. And you now, in this picture here, you can see what appeared to be some minor injuries on his face that the state governor said could have happened during as the crowd pulled him out of the vehicle.

All right. We are now coming up on a full week of watching American streets scenes with anger like that, and it was sparked, let's not forget, by the death of George Floyd.

ALLEN: His family was able to hear from the Minneapolis Police Department for the first time right here on CNN on Sunday night as our colleague, Sara Sidner, relayed questions from the family. Here it is.


MEDARIA ARRADONDO, CHIEF, MINNEAPOLIS POLICE DEPARTMENT: In my mind, this is a violation of humanity. This is a violation of all said, the majority of men and women that put the uniform on. This goes absolutely against it. This is contrary to what we believe in. And so, again, what occurred to me, it was an absolute truth that it was wrong. Period.

SARA SIDNER, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: The Floyd family happens to be on live with us and talking to Don Lemon. Is there anything you would like to say to this family who is utter despair and grief right now?

ARRADONDO: I would say to the Floyd family that I am absolutely devastatingly sorry for their loss. And if I could do anything to bring Mr. Floyd back, I would do, I would move heaven and earth to do that. So, I'm very sorry.

SIDNER: The Floyd family has asked, if you are you going to get justice for George Floyd by making sure that the other officers are arrested, and that, eventually, convicted. They want, and I know that there are things that you cannot control, but they want to know if the other officer should be arrested, in your mind, and if you see that they should all four be convicted in this case.

ARRADONDO: And this is the Floyd family right now?

SIDNER: This is the Floyd family.

ARRADONDO: To the Floyd family, being silent or not intervening, to me, you are complicit. So, I don't see a level of distinction any different. So, obviously, they're charging and those decisions will have to come through our county attorney's office, certainly the FBI is investigating that.

But to the Floyd family, I want you to know that my decision to fire all four officers was not based on some sort of hierarchy. Mr. Floyd died in our hands, and so I see that is being complicit. So that is about as much, and I apologize to the Floyd family if I'm not more clear, but I don't see a difference in terms of the ultimate outcome as he is not here with us.

SIDNER: You don't see a difference between what Officer Chauvin did and the three other officers who, some of who kneel down as well but some of whom just watched? You see that all is the same act.

ARRADONDO: Silence and inaction, you're complicit. You're complicit. If there was one solitary voice that would have intervened and act, that that's what I would've hoped for.

DON LEMON, CNN HOST: So, what's your response? What's your response to, Philonise?

PHILONISE FLOYD, GEORGE FLOYD'S BROTHER: They arrest guys every day. They have enough evidence to fire him, they have enough evidence to arrest him.


I don't know who he's talking to, but I need him to do it because we all are listening. Black lives matter.


ALLEN: And after George Floyd's brother said that statement, he broke down in tears at that moment. A powerful moment to hear from the police chief there and the family of Mr. Floyd.

CNN asked Bernice King, the daughter of Civil Rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. about her reaction to the protests taking place across the United States. Here is part of what she said. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BERNICE KING, MARTIN LUTHER KING JR.'S DAUGHTER: We had some hard choices to make and some quick choices. Time is not our ally right now. I am with the family that there needs to be arrest made, and the charges really need to be first degree. Until we have justice and that sets, we're going to have this unrest, unfortunately.

And so, Americas choice is that we can keep focusing on these reactions, or we can change the conditions that have led to these kinds of actions. Black America's choice tonight is that we can focus on those things that can help us right now, be more constructive and build the community that we want to see.

The fact of the matter is, what we are witnessing tonight it's been said over and over again, the seeds of violence that this nation has sown over and over again, the harvest is what we are witnessing tonight.

And yet, my father spoke to us back in the 50s and 60s about having a revolution of values and focusing more on people rather than things. He talked about that we have a change our alliances to be more ecumenical. He talked wiping out poverty, systemic racism, and militarism, and we ignored the process.

And unfortunately, his words have come to pass on tonight. My hope and prayer, is that somebody will pick up a phone who has influence in the situation who can turn out another way. White people, I say to you, it's time for you to speak up. It is time for you to confront your brothers and sisters.

Fortunately, I grew up in a household of nonviolence, and I still subscribe to it as the ultimate solution to the way forward. We can't -- we can't do it any other way. But people have to hear these cries tonight. We need America to answer the cry.


ALLEN: Bernie's King, daughter of Civil Rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. reacting to what is going on.

Let's talk about it with my guests now, Melina Abdullah, she joins me from Los Angeles, she is a Black Lives Matter organizer and a professor of Pan-African Studies at Cal State L.A. Thank you so much for joining us, professor.


ALLEN: Well, Bernie's King there saying, it's time for white people to speak up. It was white police officers in Minneapolis that stood and did nothing while this black man died. We see whites and blacks and Hispanics on the street together protesting. But what about leadership moving forward, professor, and black and white leaders coming together to move past the point where we are right now? ABDULLAH: Well, I think that you do see solitary, acts of solidarity

in black, brown, indigenous, Asian, and white folks all moving together demanding justice. I think that one of the things that's most inspiring, and I know that that's a strange term to be using, but I think that there is some inspiration to be gathered about the will of people to stand up, and stand up together.

So, I think that you are seeing this as a moment of solidarity where we're all crying out, those of us who are justice minded are all crying out for real justice to be ushered in.

ALLEN: And all night for many nights, you know, especially tonight here on the air at CNN, we've seen the clashes with police, how would you characterize and it's complicated because we were talking protest in cities all across the U.S., but when you see the confrontations with the police what are you feeling about the police response? We know that people have been hurt by police, and police have been hurt by people.

ABDULLAH: Well, I'll say that I've been out many nights, several of these nights and days, and what I've witnessed is police really underscore how violent they can be. That we are out protesting police violence and police brutality, and we are in that moment experiencing police violence and police brutality.


Most of the time or every time in the marches that I'm in, the marches are absolutely impassioned and the people are of course outraged, righteously outraged. Still, the demand is one for justice, but when police arrived on the scene, what we see them is sing their batons, using rubber bullets, using tear gas on protesters.

I witnessed just yesterday as I was out with my three children, one of my oldest daughters who is 16. Her, one of her good friends be shot in the face with a rubber bullet, to the point she could've easily died. It was just inches from her eye and it left a gaping hole in her forehead.

And we witnessed this at the hands of police. If you turn on anybody's live feed you can see what's happening that police are not giving warnings, they are simply moving into the crowd as if we are enemy combatants, as if we are at war, as if they've declared war upon us.

ALLEN: That is a tragic story you just told. Yes, we had an actor that posted earlier that he was hit by a rubber bullet seven times while he was involved in a peaceful protest.

I know that you are a leader in the Black Lives Matter movement, it was so powerful when it started. It had tremendous white support but then it faded. When did that happen, and why do you think that happened?

ABDULLAH: We want to be clear that the work of Black Lives Matter has never faded. We've been on the streets, and we've been doing work for the last seven years. And I think that that is evidence by the number of people who are out on the streets and organized protests. That's the work of Black Lives Matter in cities like mine and Louisville, and Indianapolis, and D.C., that we are out in the streets, and we've been doing this work.

What we've seen fading is the amount of coverage that we experience at the hands of mainstream media. So, just because CNN, or MSNBC or any other mainstream outlet turns away, doesn't mean that we, as black people and black organizers and Black Lives Matter have stopped doing our work.

In fact, there are many more of us than there were a few years ago. It's just that America, white America and mainstream media, seems to have lost its focus on our demands for justice.

ALLEN: All right. Thank you for that clarification, and we really appreciate your dedication to the Black Lives Matter movement. We'll talk with you again, we hope, as this moves forward. Melina Abdullah, thank you so much.

ABDULLAH: Thank you.

HOLMES: Powerful message. You are watching CNN Newsroom. Coming up on the program, the protests over George Floyd's death aren't just confined to the U.S. Now this was scene in London over the weekend. We'll be live there, next.



ALLEN: We're keeping our eye on the scene here, this is live in Portland, Oregon, as people remain in the streets following a protest. Portland police sent out a tweet, that they were going to start moving in, and warned people to go home. But we have seen many people, still standing on the streets. This is the scene in Portland, and we'll keep our eye on it for you.

Far from Portland, Oregon, this is London clapping and chanting black lives matter, thousands gathered in London's Trafalgar Square despite lockdown rules over the pandemic to show solidarity with the people of the United States over the death of Mr. Floyd.

HOLMES: London's Mayor, Sadiq Khan, tweeting that the killing has, quote, "rightly ignited fury and anguish, not just in the USA but around the world. And no country, city, police force, or institution, can be complacent about racism and the impact this has."

ALLEN: There were also demonstrations in Germany. This is Berlin where people wearing masks for the coronavirus held sign similar to the ones we see in the U.S., saying, I can't breathe, and no justice, no peace.

HOLMES: Also, a memorial to Floyd appearing in a park in the same city. A mural was painted at a site that was once divided by the Berlin Wall. Let's go to London with CNN's Nic Robertson is standing by there.

What's your take on how the world is viewing to what is happening to in and to the U.S. right now?

NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: With concern. Leaders are worried about the impact that the pandemic could have on their communities to, sort of, hit, if you will, underlying tensions and frustrations because people have been locked up at home.

The police yesterday in London arrested 23 people and some of those people they arrested were who's on the basis of breaking lockdown regulations and rules which say you're not supposed to gather with more than six people and keep two meters distance when you do.

So, protests clearly call outside of that. The protesters in London marched from Trafalgar Square where they gather in the early afternoon towards the U.S. embassy. So, all of this is focused around U.S. embassies.

We've heard both Australian prime minister, the foreign secretary here in the U.K. expressed concern about what's happening in the United States express, if you will, sort of sympathy with the situation. But there is no doubt, if you're a government at the moment, one of your concerns is the mood of your population.


So, this is something that we'll be watched very, very closely. And think about what happened in Germany yesterday at a soccer match being played behind closed doors and there's no -- there is no audience at the game, only on TV.

Here you see Jadon Sancho pulling up his shirt after scoring a goal, a French soccer player on a German team, and saying justice for George Floyd on his shirt, you know, on his undershirt.

This is something that's being felt with a great depth of feeling and many people across many communities and many countries, certainly feel the nerve that's been -- that's been so badly hurt in the United States at the moment.

HOLMES: Yes. Great analysis as always. Our Nic Robertson in London, we appreciate it. Thanks.

ALLEN: It has been exactly one week since George Floyd died, and the outrage over his death continues to grow in the United States and as we just saw in Europe as well. We've got the latest from across the U.S., including an emotional trip home to Minneapolis. We'll talk about it.


ALLEN: And welcome back to our viewers here in the U.S. and around the world. I'm Natalie Allen.

HOLMES: And I'm Michael Holmes. Dozens of cities across the United States are going through another

night of unrest. More than 20 states, nearly 40 cities across the country with curfews imposed and reinforcing presence of the National Guard.

ALLEN: In the U.S. capital the entire D.C National Guard has been called out to assist police with demonstrations that have gotten very close to the White House.


Earlier, police fired tear gas near the White House to disperse protesters who started fires -- set fire to some buildings.

MICHAEL HOLMES, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: In New York, thousands of protesters have been marching, the vast majority peacefully, but there have been reports of some clashes between protesters and law enforcements in some parts of the city.

Here in the city of Atlanta, police deployed tear gas at crowds of demonstrators, not far from where we sit. These protests, let's remember, sparked, of course, by the death of George Floyd.

ALLEN: He was killed after a white police officer in Minneapolis kneeled on his neck. That officer, Derek Chauvin, is scheduled to appear in court later today.

HOLMES: Minneapolis has been front and center in the protest. The National Guard is now on the streets there, as well, after violence.

ALLEN: CNN legal analyst Laura Coates, you've probably seen her on our air often, is from Minneapolis. When she went back home, she found a town she barely recognized.


LAURA COATES, CNN LEGAL ANALYST (voice-over): I'm from here. Seeing this in person is almost disorienting. Seeing the police precinct burned down, seeing the Target that I used to shop at, the grocery store I used to go to.

I am looking at the train station that I used to go before I would go downtown to my law firm when I graduated law school here. I'm looking down the street from the apartment I had, down the street from the first home that I ever had the chance to own.

(On camera): And it's disorienting to see this here so close to home. It's disorienting because it doesn't even look like a place in the United States, let alone my hometown. But what I do recognize is the community coming out to clean up, to protect one another, and to ask what's happening. But it's not a place I recognize right now.

What began as a protest, seeking justice not only for George Floyd but for what his killing represents, has devolved into violent chaos that some are blaming on opportunists, violent looters, not those seeking justice in George Floyd's name.

CAROL BECKER, MINNEAPOLIS RESIDENT: This isn't what we should see in Minneapolis. It's just -- this is not us and it wasn't our people. It wasn't the people who live here who did that and it wasn't the protesters. I know that because I literally stood right here two nights in a row, and I talked to them.

COATES (voice-over): Arrest records suggest that many of the initial arrests were from Minnesota. But some are refusing to let their message get hijacked.

JOSEPH KETTER, MINNEAPOLIS RESIDENT: This was not all about black or white or any color. This is about humanity. We didn't come out to destroy. We came on the street to protest. That's why we woke up from bed this morning, just to come up and clean our city.

COATES (voice-over): But not everyone felt the same responsibility to a community they no longer recognize or feel a part of.

YAVONNE DAWSON, MINNEAPOLIS RESIDENT: We grew up here. We have ties here. We're loyal here. That's the reason it does hurt us. But at the same time, I mean, look around. I mean, this is not our city.

COATES (voice-over): Across the city, we saw peaceful protests. Community members are trying to support one another and even cleaning up the extensive damage from the night before. At a makeshift memorial where George Floyd and bystanders begged for his life, protesters tried to make sure his memory and their cause doesn't disappear.

(On camera): I can't believe that this is the street I used to live on. It's only four blocks away from where George Floyd was killed. This neighborhood usually has children playing and dogs being walked. And today, a Black Hawk helicopter went overhead. And a few blocks away, the National Guard has been mobilized. Is this really my hometown? And how many others in this country are like this right now?


HOLMES: Now the unrest in America cities is happening, of course, as the country continues to struggle with the coronavirus pandemic. We have seen obvious signs of progress, but south of the border, in Latin America, the virus is surging. We'll discuss when we come back.




HOLMES: Welcome back. The protests in the U.S. are unfolding, of course, in the shadow of the coronavirus pandemic. New York, the hardest hit state, is making some progress fighting COVID-19.

ALLEN: Governor Andrew Cuomo says the number of daily deaths is still dropping, with 56 deaths reported Sunday. Intubations and hospitalizations are also down. HOLMES: Meanwhile, the U.S. is sending a thousand ventilators and two million doses of the controversial drug hydroxychloroquine to Brazil, the new epicenter of the pandemic. This despite the World Health Organization and the U.S.'s own Food and Drug Administration expressing concerns about the drug's safety. Brazil now has more than half a million cases. That's second only to the U.S.

ALLEN: And Spain may need more time under lockdown to tackle the virus. The country's prime minister is saying he will ask parliament to extend the lockdown one last time until January 21st.

HOLMES: Well, Nic Robertson has been looking at how certain perceived strong men have been handling the virus.


NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR (voice-over): The United States, Brazil, and Russia have an enviable lead -- gold, silver, bronze, respectively, in this global pandemic. The presidents are all populists. Their populations are suffering the highest number of COVID-19 infections. Inaction and ineptitude are key factors, but each leader is earning their podium placing.


ROBERTSON (voice-over): Russia is coming in third. Early march, state media portrays COVID-19 as not a Russia problem. Late March, Putin pulls on a hazmat suit in a hospital, signals he has the situation under control. The next day, he announces paid vacation, which effectively begins a lockdown, but soon delegate day-to-day responsibilities.


VLADIMIR PUTIN, PRESIDENT OF RUSSIA (through translator): Regions and the head of regions on my orders will receive additional powers.

ROBERTSON (voice-over): In later meetings, he seemed distracted. Problem is, in Russia, when the boss doesn't take a grip, the local officials slack, just what the virus needs.

JAIR BOLSONARO, PRESIDENT OF BRAZIL (through translator): The economy has to function because we can't have a wave of unemployment.

ROBERTSON (voice-over): In second place, Jair Bolsonaro recognized the pandemic's danger, but began early prioritizing the economy over health concerns.

BOLSONARO (through translator): Brazil is falling apart and after falling apart, it's not like some people say 'the economy gets better,' it doesn't get better. We'll see a miserable country.

ROBERTSON (voice-over): He sticks to his damaging message. Even joins rallies protesting sound lockdowns advocated by regional leaders.

BOLSONARO (through translator): So? I'm sorry. What do you want me to do?

ROBERTSON (voice-over): And reacts angrily when confronted by Brazilians about the spiralling infections. His counter message cost him two health secretaries, left an open door for the pandemic.

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Now, the Democrats are politicizing the coronavirus.

ROBERTSON (voice-over): President Trump, who leads the U.S., the tragic top spot of infections, combines Putin's and Bolsonaro's failings.

D. TRUMP: This is the new hoax.

ROBERTSON (voice-over): First, denial of the impending pandemic late February, even after restricting some travel from China a month earlier.

D. TRUMP: And I see the disinfectant would knock it out in a minute.

ROBERTSON (voice-over): He becomes both distraction and divider in chief.

D. TRUMP: The president of the United States calls the shots.

ROBERTSON (voice-over): Fractious with some governors, fine with others, failing to unite and lead the country.

D. TRUMP: Two months ago, we had the greatest economy in the history of the world. We're going to build the greatest economy in the world again and it's going to happen pretty fast.

ROBERTSON (voice-over): And like Bolsonaro, Trump is pushing to prioritize the economy despite COVID-19 dangers.


HOLMES: Now the death of George Floyd was, of course, not an isolated incident. Anger has been building for years over the killing of African-Americans by police and security forces. Ahead, we take a look back at the sequence of events, horrific killings that led to this breaking point.




ALLEN: One week since the tragic death of George Floyd, people across the U.S. continue to protest. Streets are filled with demonstrators, chanting slogans, carrying posters, and also in many places creating impromptu memorials for Mr. Floyd.

This certainly is not the first time acts of violence against African- Americans have sparked mass protest. In fact, it has been happening for many, many years.

HOLMES: Yeah. It is all too familiar, isn't it? CNN's Ryan Young is going to take a look back for us at some of these events. A warning, the story contains graphic images. You may find them disturbing. It is a powerful report, though. I urge you to watch.


RYAN YOUNG, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Black America knows the pain well, and the pain runs deep, as cameras capture viral moments that raised questions about policing and race, the deaths of black people, the cries for justice, the names that spark movements.

In 2012, 17-year-old Trayvon Martin walks into a 7/11 in Sanford, Florida, grabs a bag of can of Skittles and a can of Arizona iced tea, wearing a dark grey hoodie that would become a symbol to many. As Martin walks home, he encounters George Zimmerman, a neighborhood watch volunteer, who has already called 911 to report Martin's movements, even though the teen had done nothing wrong.

GEORGE ZIMMERMAN, AMERICAN WHO FATALLY SHOT TRAYVON MARTIN (voice- over): Something is wrong with him. Yep, he's coming to check me out. He's got something in his hands. I don't know what his deal is.

YOUNG (voice-over): Minutes later, after a fight between the two, George Zimmerman shoots and kills Trayvon Martin.

Zimmerman is charged with murder, but a jury finds him not guilty.

His death and acquittal sparked national outrage, and a movement is born.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Trayvon was a people's person. He did not deserve to die. I pledge I will not let my son die in vain.

YOUNG (voice-over): In July, 2014, 43-year-old Eric Garner, a father of six, is allegedly selling loose cigarettes illegally on Staten Island in New York. Officers surround him to make an arrest.

ERIC GARNER, DIED AFTER CHOKEHOLD BY POLICE: I'm minding my business. Please, just leave me alone.

YOUNG (voice-over): Officer Daniel Pantaleo is seen wrapping an arm around Garner's neck before pulling him down to the ground. As Pantaleo forces Garners head into the sidewalk, Garner is saying --

GARNER: I can't breathe.

YOUNG (voice-over): He died shortly afterward. Five years later, Pantaleo is fired after it is determined he used a chokehold banned by the NYPD. But long before that day, Garner's last words become a national cry for help and social justice.

August, 2014, 18-year-old Michael Brown is shot by a police officer. His death sparks days of protests and riots in the city of Ferguson, Missouri. While the city burns, two narratives emerge, one that Brown was unarmed and surrendering when he was shot. The other from Office Darren Wilson is that Brown was told to get out the street and during a confrontation the teen tried taking his gun. The officer says he feared for his life and shot and killed Brown.


YOUNG (voice-over): This time, the cry is the chant, "hands up, don't shoot," as thousands poured to the streets to demand justice. The officer is not charged.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We have had enough of all of this and this change must come.

YOUNG (voice-over): In October 2014, Laquan McDonald, a black teenager, is killed by police in Chicago, shot 16 times by an officer who arrived at the scene seconds before. Though the officer claims self-defense since McDonald had a knife, an autopsy shows some of the shots entered McDonald's back while he was turned away.

The incident sparks protests in Chicago when police dash cam video is released more than a year later. The officer, Jason Van Dyke, is found guilty of murder.

In November 2014, 12-year-old Tamir Rice is playing with a toy gun at a park in Cleveland, Ohio when officers are called. An officer shoots Rice seconds after arriving. A grand jury declines to indict the officer. The prosecutors say the evidence did not indicate criminal misconduct by police.

In April of 2015, in North Charleston, South Carolina, Walter Scott was pulled over for a broken brake light.


YOUNG (voice-over): An eyewitness captured the tragic outcome. Walter Scott was shot and killed by Officer Michael Slager, who was later convicted and sentenced to 20 years for murder. Later in April of 2015, the city of Baltimore is rocked when Freddie Gray dies in police custody. The 25-year-old black man's arrest is caught on video. The Baltimore Police Department charges Gray for possessing a knife. After being transported in a police van, Gray falls into a coma and is taken to the hospital where he dies later of a spinal injury.

Over the next few days, the city is brought to its knees with residents demanding to know what happened to Gray. None of the officers involved in Gray's arrest were convicted.

In 2015, Sandra Bland is pulled over for a minor traffic violation by State Trooper Brian Encinia.

BRIAN ENCINIA, STATE TROOPER: Do you mind putting out your cigarette, please?

SANDRA BLAND, DIED IN POLICE CUSTODY (voice-over): I'm in my car, why do I have to put out my cigarette?

ENCINIA: Well, you can step on out now.

YOUNG (voice-over): Their exchange escalates, resulting in Bland's arrest. The video shows how quickly the interaction turns.

ENCINIA: Get out of the car! I will light you up.

YOUNG (voice-over): Bland is found dead in her cell days later, her death ruled a suicide.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I told him not to reach for it! I told him to get his hand off it!

YOUNG (voice-over): In July of 2016, Philando Castile gets pulled over. His girlfriend Diamond Reynolds and her four-year-old daughter were in the car. When she starts using her phone to live stream the interaction, Officer Jeronimo Yanez opens fire, killing Philando.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh my god, please don't tell he's dead.

YOUNG (voice-over): The community rallies behind the Castile family. He was a cafeteria supervisor. The officer is charged but later found not guilty.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He was no criminal. My baby was a good man, a good hardworking man.

YOUNG (voice-over): Then another tragedy in September 2018 unfolds in Dallas.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No justice, no peace. No justice, no peace.

YOUNG (voice-over): Twenty-six-year-old Botham Jean is shot and killed by Dallas police officer Amber Guyger while sitting in his own home.

ALLISON JEAN, MOTHER OF BOTHAM JEAN: So I'm calling on the Dallas officials. Please come clean. Give me justice for my son.

YOUNG (voice-over): A jury later found Guyger guilty. She was sentenced to 10 years for murder.

In March of 2020, Breonna Taylor, an EMT, and her boyfriend Kenneth Walker are in her apartment in Louisville, Kentucky when just before 1:00 a.m., three plain clothed officers arrived to execute a search warrant in a drug case. Taylor and her boyfriend think someone is breaking in when police kicked on the door. Kenneth Walker grabs his legal firearm and starts shooting, hitting one officer in the leg.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (voice-over): Officers encountered rifle fire! Officer down!

YOUNG (voice-over): Officers returned more than 20 rounds, killing Breonna Taylor.


YOUNG (voice-over): Incident after incident, year after year.



YOUNG (voice-over): Tearing at the hearts of black people.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE/UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I can't breathe. I can't breathe.

YOUNG (voice-over): As they look for a balance from the justice system.


YOUNG (voice-over): The stories, the names well known, the pain runs deep.

Ryan Young, CNN, Chicago.


HOLMES: Just incredible when you see it put together like that.


ALLEN: I know. It is very hard to see, but we must continue to look and see.

HOLMES: Absolutely. Yeah, every one of those familiar, but when they're put together like that, wow.

ALLEN: Chilling.

HOLMES: And indeed we have been seeing disturbing scenes of violence in the streets across the U.S. between police and some protesters. But we are also seeing dialogue in places like what we are going to show you now between a demonstrator and an officer. This is in Charlotte, North Carolina.


JASMINE NEVINS, CHARLOTTE-MECKLENBURG POLICE OFFICER: As I was mentioning, I can't speak for those officers and that officer in Minneapolis. I can only do what I can do and what I can say and how I feel. I'm hurting the same way you're hurting, like you're hurting, like everybody out here, sir. We all feel the same thing.

Obviously, some of our pain is deeper, deeper rooted just because of the color of our skin. I understand that. I understand your pain. I do my best to hold my brothers and sisters in blue accountable. And I can speak for myself in the situations that I've been in where I've had to say, hey, ease up, where somebody's had to tell me, hey, ease up. I'm confused as to why that didn't happen.


ALLEN: Police in Charlotte did arrest nine protesters Sunday night. The city is not under a curfew and said it has no plan to deploy the National Guard.

I'm Natalie Allen. We thank you for watching. But before we go, a historic note about us. Ted Turner launched CNN -- as you know, Michael -- 40 years ago today. Just want to give a shout out, hats off to our tireless reporters on the scene of all these protests around the country.

HOLMES: Yeah, I couldn't agree more, doing incredible and brave work, covering some brave people. Thanks, Natalie. It is nice to see you. We're in separate studios. That's coronavirus. I'm Michael Holmes. "Early Start" is next.

ALLEN: Thanks for watching, everyone.