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Day 10 Of Protests Remains Largely Peaceful; Europeans Protest In Solidarity With U.S.; Police: New Suspect In Madeleine McCann's Disappearance; Three of Four Ex-Officers Arraigned in George Floyd's Death; Protests Have Erupted Around the World After the Death of George Floyd Under Police Custody; New Details Emerge About the Death of Ahmaud Arbery; CDC Director Says Protesters Should be Tested For Coronavirus; War-torn Yemen Could Suffer One of the Worst Outbreaks from the Coronavirus; Russia Declares State of Emergency After Massive Oil Spill in the Arctic Circle. Aired 2-3a ET
Aired June 5, 2020 - 02:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
JOHN VAUSE, CNN ANCHOR: Hello. Welcome to all viewers joining us from around the world. I'm John Vause. This is "CNN Newsroom."
After 10 days of nationwide protest, after 10 days filled with rage and anger and tears, all four police officers involved in the death of George Floyd have now been charged.
Three of the four officers appeared in a Minneapolis court on Thursday and were formally charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder. Bail was set at $1 million each or $750,000 if they agreed to certain conditions.
The officer who pinned Floyd's neck to the sidewalk with his knee was not in court. Earlier, though, his charges were upgraded from third- degree to second-degree felony murder.
And not far from the courthouse at North Central University, they gathered for an emotional memorial service, setting in silence for eight minutes and 46 seconds, the same amount of time the police officer's knee pushed down on Floyd's neck.
Since Floyd died, protests have erupted around the world: in Europe, New Zealand, Australia, Britain, Africa. Over the U.S., protesters have defied overnight curfews, stared down a heavy police presence. They have been loud and at times angry but overwhelmingly nonviolent.
And in the U.S. capital, a new chain link security fence and barricades now surrounding the White House, keeping protesters, reporters and everyone else blocks away from the people's house.
In a city which has been mostly peaceful, hundreds, maybe thousands of unidentified troops standing guard, none wearing insignia, and refusing to identify themselves when asked. Thursday was also the first day when many stop to remember and honor George Floyd. There will be many more services and vigils in the days ahead. More grief, more anguish for those who knew him best.
At this first memorial, they spoke about the kindness of a gentle giant, while activists continue to demand justice in his name. CNN's Miguel Marquez begins our coverage.
MIGUEL MARQUEZ, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Moments of prayer and reflection at the first memorial service for George Floyd.
PHILONESE FLOYD, BROTHER OF GORGE FLOYD: Everybody wants justice. We want justice for George. He's going to get it. He's going to get it.
BRADLEY FLOYD, BROTHER OF GEORGE FLOYD: I want you guys to know that he would stand up for any injustice to everyone. Can you now please say his name?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE/UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: George Floyd.
B. FLOYD: Thank you.
MARQUEZ (voice-over): As the city and the country mourn Floyd, killed by Minneapolis police, which has sparked 10 days of protests and outrage.
AL SHARPTON, PRESIDENT, NATIONAL ACTION NETWORK: The reason why we are marching all over the world is we were like George. We could not breathe, not because there was something wrong with our lungs, but you would not take your knee off our neck. We don't want no favors, just get off of us, and we can be and do whatever we can be.
MARQUEZ (voice-over): The three former police officers that either helped Floyd down or stood by and watched made their first court appearance after being charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder, all being held on at least $750,000 in bail.
Police here have released highly redacted personnel records on the four officers, including a 2007 incidents where Derek Chauvin, now charged with second-degree murder, was reprimanded after claims he needlessly removed a woman from her car.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It is very difficult to hold a police accountable even when there is a violation of law.
(MUSIC PLAYING) MARQUEZ (voice-over): And there are new details from a friend who is in the car with Floyd during the arrest. Maurice Lester Hall telling The New York Times, "He was from the beginning, trying in his humblest form to show he was not resisting in no form or way. I could hear him pleading, 'please, officer, what's all this for?'"
Today, thousands protested by walking across the Brooklyn Bridge, joined by Floyd's brother Terrence.
MARQUEZ (voice-over): And as Floyd's life is remembered in Minneapolis, new questions are being raised about other cases of police using controversial neck restraints in Tacoma, Washington, Sarasota, Florida, and Sacramento.
SHARPTON: This is the time.
SHARPTON: We won't stop. We will keep going until we change the whole system of justice.
MARQUEZ (voice-over): Miguel Marquez, CNN, Minneapolis, Minnesota.
VAUSE: Four ex-cops, first arrested, and then appearing in court. That in itself is a milestone for this country, which has a history of not prosecuting cases like this. It's hard to find any record of even one police officer charged with second-degree felony murder, let alone four accused at the same time.
And without the days and nights of mass nationwide protests, chances are it would never have happened. This is a rare cultural event happening right now, coming together, which could make this moment a possible turning point in the history of the United States.
For more on that, the cofounder of Black Lives Matter, Opal Tometi, is with us now from Los Angeles. Thank you so much for taking the time to be with us. We appreciate it very much.
OPAL TOMETI, CO-FOUNDER, BLACK LIVES MATTER: Thank you so much for having me.
VAUSE: These protests, they're now about what more than obviously just the murder of Mr. Floyd. But, today, justice for George Floyd came one very big closer with these four officers charged. Have you had time to think about what that moment actually mean, how far your movement has come in the last couple of years?
TOMETI: You know, it is an incredible moment. I will be really honest, seeing people from all walks of life, seeing a vibrant, multiracial movement for black lives emerge not only in this country but around the world, it is remarkable. It is unprecedented to see at this level. And we are counting our winds in this moment. However, we also know that this is just the beginning. We can't count our eggs before they hatch. And this is only one part of what we have been demanding. People are looking at the system and looking for change, wholesale.
VAUSE: It seems a step along the way, a good step that is felt nonetheless. The way Mr. Floyd died, that is rare because on average each year more than 1,000 people are shot dead by police, some under legitimate circumstances.
But the website 538 reports that since 2005, 110 law enforcement officers nationwide have been charged with murder or manslaughter in an on-duty shooting, forty-two were convicted, 50 were not, 18 cases remain pending.
That's less than three convictions for murder a year out of more than 1,000 deadly shootings. Clearly, a lot of police officers have been getting away with murder. For the most part, non-black America has been blissfully unaware.
TOMETI: Absolutely. People have been unaware. They have been silent. It's been going on in our communities for generations. So, why we created Black Lives Matter was to put a stop to the willful and negligent silence around these issues. It has been seven years since we started. It is going to be eight in July.
We are going to keep on pushing forward to ensure that our lives matter, to ensure that we the standing black lives, and that we are investing in black communities because that is what we actually need.
VAUSE: There have been a lot of comparisons with this moment and the race riots of 1968. But there does seem to be a very major difference and it's obvious when you look.
I want to show you some photographs. On one side, Kansas City, April 9th, 1968, that's a black and white photograph there, I should say. Not a white person to be seen. But on the other side, Kansas City on Thursday, on the left hand side of the screen.
Here is Atlanta in 1968, days after the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King. Just below that, same city, 52 years later, same struggle, but on the front lines of that protest, white people, black people, Latinos, Asians, a whole mixed bag.
So tell me, what is driving the diversity in the protesters here? We are in a midst of a pandemic, people are come out and risking their lives to protect the lives of black Americans at the hands of police.
TOMETI: Honestly, I think people are waking up. They are looking around. They've had time sitting in their homes or really navigating what is going to take place with their lives and their livelihoods. And they have been able to take stock of what is happening in this country.
They are looking around and they are seeing that their neighbors are being profiled and targeted. They are seeing that the members of black people in their community are being harassed and being murdered on camera. And people are tired. They are frustrated. They are disgusted and beside themselves with what have been going on.
They, finally, have some time and some space to be able to show up and join the protest and the rallies. Their consciousness is awake. It's amazing to see this. Quite honestly, as I've been talking with different people in my community, I am seeing that people were aware before.
But this video and the consecutive murders that we have, Breanna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and the countless others around the country, people are just sick and tired.
TOMETI: They do not want this nation to go in this direction any longer, and they are fed up. They have been hearing our protests and the chants and everything for so long. I think that they are realizing that things are not going to change unless they get off the sidelines and that their silence is complicity. We are seeing a sea change in this movement and it is really heartening.
VAUSE: Let's go from heartening to this. I'm trying to work out where President Trump fits into all of this. He has taken a very hard line or the head kicker (ph) approach, if you like. It seems to have backfired on him, hasn't it?
TOMETI: It has. You know what? People are looking at this situation that they've been in. They have been living hands to mouth, and we can tell by the ways in which people had to race to the soup kitchens and to food pantries in the wake of a pandemic.
We saw 40 million more people lose their jobs, people who do not know where their health insurance are going to come from, people who are suffering and concerned with their light bills, their rent, their mortgage payments, and so on.
And so people are really fed up that we do not have a solution comprehensively, then they see the brutality that is happening in the community, and they have had enough. They've had enough of the way the government is operating right now.
VAUSE: It does seem that at this moment in the midst of a pandemic, it is the pandemic which has brought so many people together.
TOMETI: It has. It has made us empathize and appreciate one another and rely on one another. I think one of the things that we've been seeing across the country is this emergence of mutual aid groups, people who connecting with each other, ensuring that their neighbors are OK, injuring that people in their community have the resources that they need.
So people have already been showing up and ensuring that they keep each other safe and supported in this time. And so I think this is just an extension of that, knowing that we are responsible for caring for our neighbor, that our lives are intertwined, and we have a duty to show up and ensure that this democracy works for everybody.
It is incredible to see that people are making this known, not only from the pandemic of the virus, but also this pandemic of racism.
VAUSE: Yeah. Opal Tometi, it's a pleasure to speak with you. Thank you so much.
TOMETI: Thank you so much.
VAUSE: Opal Tometi there, co-founder of Black Lives Matter in Los Angeles, take care.
VAUSE: There are also calls for justice in the Ahmaud Arbery murder case. The 25-year-old black man was out jogging before being chased down, shot, and killed. Investigators in the state of Georgia are now sharing new details. CNN's Martin Savidge was in the courthouse for the latest hearing. A warning, some of the images and the details in his report are difficult to listen to and to watch.
MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN ANCHOR AND CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It was a hearing that sounded like a trial. Georgia prosecutors summed up their case against three white men, accused of killing a 25-year-old black man running through their neighborhood.
JESSE EVANS, COBB COUNTY CHIEF ASSISTANT DISTRICT ATTORNEY: On February 23rd of 2020, victim Ahmaud Arbery was chased, hunted down, and ultimately executed at the hands of these men.
SAVIDGE (voice-over): The three defendants, Gregory McMichael and his son Travis, and William "Roddie" Bryan, Jr., appeared via video link to the county jail. The McMichaels initially told authorities, they thought Arbery was a burglary suspect. The prosecution says Arbery had done nothing wrong.
EVANS: The fact of the matter is there is no evidence that these defendants saw a burglary, saw any crime, had any subjective belief or even a hunch by these civilians that would authorize their choices that they made to chase after and ultimately gunned down this unarmed victim in the middle of the street.
SAVIDGE (voice-over): In fact, Arbery was out jogging the day he died. Friends say it is what he loved to do. Prosecutors detailed the events leading up to Arbery's death, saying all three men, using two pickup trucks, became a neighborhood hunting party, blocking and redirecting Arbery as he tried to flee. Before they finally cornered him, one of the suspects captured Arbery's final moments on cell phone video.
SAVIDGE (voice-over): On the witness stand, the lead investigator of the case said 34-year-old Travis McMichael admitted to the first officers on the scene he deliberately shot Arbery three times with a shotgun. Then, Agent Richard Dial shocked the courtroom, recounting what alleged co-conspirator William Bryan says Travis McMichael said next.
RICHARD DIAL, GBI ASSISTANT SPECIAL AGENT IN CHARGE: Mr. Bryan said that after the shooting took place, before police arrival, when Mr. Arbery was on the ground, that he heard Travis McMichael make the statement (bleep).
SAVIDGE (on camera): Defense attorney for Travis McMichael maintained he never said that racial slur. And overall, the defense attorney said all three men were only trying to have a conversation with Ahmaud Arbery that day when they were trying to stop him, even though two of the men were armed.
SAVIDGE (on camera): They maintain it all went wrong when Ahmaud Arbery turned on them and Travis McMichael had to fire in self- defense. The prosecution says that is not what happened.
Lastly, I will point out that horrific, alleged, racial slur that Travis McMichael made, may not be used against him at a trial because Georgia is one of a handful of states that does not have a state hate crime law. Now, that could change by the end of this month. But even if it does, it would not apply to the trial of Ahmaud Arbery's death.
Martin Savidge, CNN, Glynn County, Georgia.
VAUSE: And the testimony about Ahmaud Arbery's final moments was devastating for his mother to hear, and she spoke to CNN's Chris Cuomo.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
WANDA COOPER, MOTHER OF AHMAUD ARBERY: It was heartbreaking. I often imagine the last minutes of my son's life. I didn't imagine it would be this harsh. But to learn that that statement was made in the last seconds of his life, again, it was very heartbreaking.
CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: Is this a situation where, as a mother, you wanted to know what happened, or do you wish you had never heard?
COOPER: I wanted to know. I think knowing what happened will give me a little sense of closure of what actually happened out in Satilla Shores.
CUOMO: The words used by one of the killers, it is nothing that you have not heard before. It's nothing that we don't know exists, especially in a lot of dark hearts. But to know that it was said, in the moment, about your son, right after they had to realize what had happened, what they had done, what is its significance to you in that moment?
COOPER: At this point, I'm really speechless because it's -- I mean, it's hard to know that he had to go through that, that he had to run. He actually ran his life. And then when he couldn't run anymore, he had to fight. And then after he fought, he was killed. It is very hard to know that he endured that.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAUSE: And Arbery family lawyer says the Justice Department has now opened a hate crime investigation.
Well, the risks and dangers of protesting during the pandemic. The U.S. already has the most cases in the world. And now, it is bracing for more. We will look at where the major risks lie.
Later, there are serious questions about police tactics across the U.S. after another video of an officer with a knee on a black man's neck has emerged.
VAUSE: Well, the images of crowded protests across the United States sparked a lot of concerns among health officials. They are warning of a possible surge in the number of people infected with the coronavirus.
CDC Director Robert Redfield says protesters should be tested within three to seven days. He also says tear gas used by police can increase the spread of the virus. Worldwide, almost 400,000 lives have been lost in this pandemic so far with Brazil and Mexico setting a new devastating record.
Joining me now from San Francisco is Dr. Shoshana Ungerleider, a specialist in internal medicine at California Pacific Medical Center. Doctor, thanks for taking the time to be with us. We appreciate it.
SHOSHANA UNGERLEIDER, INTERNAL MEDICINE SPECIALIST, CALIFORNIA PACIFIC MEDICAL CENTER: Thanks for having me.
VAUSE: We are now on day 10 of these protests. The incubation period for COVID-19, on average, is 10 days, can take up to 14. Are we close or very close to the time when we should start to see an uptick in the number of infections?
UNGERLEIDER: Yeah. That's right. We very likely will see a big uptick. I think it is quite inevitable. I have to say, racism is a public health issue in this country and standing up against police brutality is critical, but I am definitely concerned about the safety and well-being of protesters.
So despite folks being outdoors, people are packed very tightly together, which makes social distancing impossible. I very much expect, along with other public health officials, that we are going to see a spike in the number of cases unfortunately.
VAUSE: An epidemiologist from Johns Hopkins agreed to that point. He tweeted this. "We should always evaluate the risks and benefits of efforts to control the virus. In this moment, the public health risks of not protesting to demand an end to systemic racism greatly exceed the harms of the virus."
So, OK, so given that, what can people do in these crowds to keep them safe? We mentioned, you cannot social distance, you cannot wear a mask. What else?
UNGERLEIDER: Well, you can definitely wash your hands often. Absolutely, as you said, wear a mask. You can try to convene with smaller groups of people to maintain social distance. The one thing to know is that when you're yelling, you're expelling particles farther from your mouth than you would be if you are talking or if you are staying quiet.
So, using noisemakers instead is actually a better way to keep others safe. Really, evaluating whether or not, before you leave home, thinking about your own age, the age and health of the folks that live in your home with you, those that you care for, you know, that is how we evaluate our personal risks in terms of becoming seriously ill from COVID.
I think it is really important, of course, that people exercise their rights to peacefully protest, but it is important to think about, you know, the individual risk when leaving the home to gather in groups.
VAUSE: As if life was not complicated already. This pandemic adds a whole host of problems. There also a lot of memorials in the days ahead. We only had one on Thursday. They have gathered to remember George Floyd.
There was a memorial service held in Minneapolis. Couple of people there wear masks, but not a lot. This is a sad moment. People need some kind of human contact, some comfort. But, you know, when we look at these images here of, you know, people are trying to hug and console each other. What should they be doing?
UNGERLEIDER: Gosh, it's such a tricky time, right, because you want people to come together in community. The process of mourning is so important for closure. Coming together with the people that you know and love is really critical, especially when dealing with loss. You know, I don't have a great answer.
UNGERLEIDER: I think that wearing masks, I think being thoughtful about your own personal risk based on your age and your underlying health condition is important. There are ways that people can connect virtually, right, to do online memorials, if you can, if you feel like it is unsafe to be around others at this point. But it is a very tough situation.
VAUSE: Yeah. That's the thing about this virus. It is cruel. When people need this contact the most is when they can't have it. We are also seeing many of these protests across the country. Police departments firing tear gas, you know, like massive gas (ph) in World War I.
There are many warnings that tear gas actually could end up being a lethal form of crowd control because of the way it helps indirectly spread COVID-19. Is it a legal responsibility here to find an alternative way to deal with protesters? Is it at least a moral responsibility to do so?
UNGERLEIDER: Yeah, great question. You know, I think so.
UNGERLEIDER: I mean, as you pointed out, the use of smoke of tear gas or pepper spray to disperse crowd is really a public health nightmare because they cause coughing, tearing, and sneezing, all the things that increase the risk of spread.
And then, of course, you know, on the flip side, thousands of people circulating together, you know, make contact tracing impossible if someone does test positive. So, yeah, I mean, I do think there is a moral imperative here to think differently about crowd control and keeping people safe.
VAUSE: It is not a finish off with the never-ending saga of hydroxychloroquine. There's been another turn, another twist. Scientists behind a widespread study say that hydroxychloroquine is actually causing harm when used as a treatment for COVID-19. They have withdrawn their research because there has some concerns about the accuracy of the data which the study was based on.
They tell the Lancet, "we all entered this collaboration to contribute in good faith and at a time of great need during the COVID-19, we deeply apologize to you, the editors, the journal readership for any embarrassment or inconvenience that this may have caused."
So, what are the implications here? Is chloroquine back in the game right now? I mean, how do you see it?
UNGERLEIDER: Gosh, you know, data is coming out all the time in terms of what might be working, what isn't working. I think, at this point, the jury is still out. We had conflicting evidence about whether or not it prevents infection, does it treat COVID. I think that we all need to be patient here in terms of looking at the numbers. Hopefully, more studies will come out that will give us more conclusive information about what to do going forward.
VAUSE: The whole issue with chloroquine, though, it just seems that it was heightened because it was put in focus by the president of the United States. So, well before it should have been.
Then there was this flurry of studies and all of this information came out, which is I guess why this process that we are now seeing in public has always been done sort of quietly, behind closed doors, evaluated, and then sort of put out in a thoughtful and methodical way. That did not happen with this drug. Is that sort of the main issue that we are seeing with it right now?
UNGERLEIDER: I think so. The spotlight was really put on hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine early by the president, and then again a month later, despite the fact that there was no evidence that it was helpful and definitely didn't prevent infection.
And so, again, I think we need to leave this to the scientists and the researchers, to really look at this very closely before we make any assumptions or make announcements to the public about going out and using it. It may cause more harm than good.
VAUSE: Dr. Ungerleider in San Francisco, thank you so much for being with us.
UNGERLEIDER: Thank you.
VAUSE: Experts fear that war-torn Yemen could suffer one of the worst outbreaks from the coronavirus. The country has reported fewer than 500 cases, but the ratio of fatalities is nearly 23 percent. Funding cuts by the U.N. are at the heart of this dire prediction. U.N. officials say Yemen's death toll from the virus could exceed that of the war, disease, and hunger combined over the past five years.
In Northern Russia, a state of emergency after a major oil spill in an Arctic river. Investigators say 20,000 tons of fuel leaked when a power station lost pressure in a remote industrial region. Vladimir Putin blasts at local officials who learned about the spill from social media two days after it happened. A cleanup is underway. But environmental experts say it will take decades to recover.
With that, we shall take a short break. Anger over the death of George Floyd has spread around the world. Activists are using this as a chance to call for racial justice in their own countries.
JOHN VAUSE, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: The breaking news with peaceful protests underway in cities across the United States. In Brooklyn, New York, police stopped and talked with demonstrators out on the streets despite an 8:00 p.m. curfew, out in Manhattan were arrested without incident.
There was tension at times but there was also dialogue in Atlanta. The city's mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms told protests that there is something better on the other side of all of this. In Washington, crowds gathered at the White House and the U.S. Capitol, but a sudden rainstorm late Thursday cleared out all of the protesters. Early in the day, new barricades and a security fence was erected around the White House.
We're hearing for the first time from a friend of George Floyd, a passenger in his SUV on the -- on the day George Floyd was killed. He spoke earlier with CNN's Chris Cuomo.
MAURICE LESTER HALL, FRIEND OF GEORGE FLOYD: I remember hearing allow like the object of a blunt force, some large object, whatever the officer had in his hand. Again, I'm turned because I'm taking care of the officer that's on my side. I can only hear this. And once I hear this loud distraction of this officer trying to break George's window, then he's demanding things and I can hear George asking him, what did he -- you know, what did he want him to do?
CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: So he's asking him -- so George wasn't saying, get away from the car, leave me alone. I'm not going to get out? Nothing like that?
HALL: No, not at all. No. In fact, he was only -- he said, what do you want me to do? He -- the officer started George, first of all, by bluntly banging on the window. Once he done that. Then I can see Mr. George putting his hands above the steering wheel of the vehicle. And once he did that, then I witnessed the officer reaching in and grabbing Mr. Floyd's hands.
CUOMO: Now when they grabbed -- when they grabbed George's hands and put them behind his back, in the videotape, it seemed like it took a long time to get him out of the car. What was happening during that time?
HALL: He was asking them questions. They asked him, let me see your hands. George showed him his hands over the steering wheel. And when they -- when he did that the officer reached in and grabbed his hands. Now, keep in mind he did start off by like he was trying to break the window. Open the door, he demanded.
What I believe, the energy was set wrong by the police when they approached him because they approach with like an energy where it startled Mr. Floyd. That's what I believe. And he was just trying to defuse the situation as best -- as humbly as he could.
The man asked them, what do you want them to do? Mr. George -- the cop said, put your hands up, show me your hands. Floyd showed them hands, put his hands in the air as a sign of here go my hands. I'm not moving in the vehicle. I'm not trying to -- I'm not trying to flee or no --
CUOMO: George was saying things like that. George was saying things like I'm good, I'm not going to do anything. Here it is. He was speaking that way?
HALL: By actions. By showing them like here's my hands over the steering wheel. When he shows his hands and put them over the steering wheel, the cops reached in and grab his arms.
CUOMO: Got it.
HALL: When he grabs his arms, George asked the cop, why are you grabbing me with (INAUDIBLE)? Why are you doing this? You asked to see my hands, here goes my hands. He's a big fellow. Now as a cop, one officer is touching George hands while George is still sitting in a peaceful form. He's in his vehicle. And the cop is like -- it seems as if he was trying to pull him out or something. I can't really, you know --
CUOMO: Did you hear them telling George to get out of the car?
HALL: No, I just -- I witness and remember the officer then from my sight taken off to his partner side. Now, it's two cups on George's side.
CUOMO: Did you hear -- they start shouting gun or the reporting was that they thought someone may have a gun or -- and that's why there was an urgency. Did anybody in the vehicle have a weapon?
HALL: No, they didn't find a weapon. They detain the car. So -- I mean, if there was a weapon involved, you guys, I'm sure it would have came out.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There's no weapon.
VAUSE: Lester Hall who was in the car with George Floyd on the day he died who's speaking with CNN's Chris Cuomo just a few hours ago. The death of George Floyd is hardly the only case of alleged aggressive behavior by police. And despite the killing, the incidents keep happening even this past week. CNN's Ryan Young reports experts say they reveal a disturbing pattern.
RYAN YOUNG, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Police tactics across the country are now under a microscope.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You got your knee on my man's neck, man.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Come on, man.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: On his neck --
YOUNG: This video from Sarasota Florida shows the moment officers attempted to arrest a man during a domestic disturbance call.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I got you on his neck, man.
YOUNG: One of the officers is seen kneeling on the back of the man's neck just days before George Floyd's death. One of the officers said in the incident report that the defendant tried to get away and that police use minor force. Kneeling on someone's neck, Sarasota Police say, is not something they train their officers to do. The department has now launched an internal investigation.
It's one of the several recent incidents protesters say highlight a pattern of troubling police techniques. Another example, police in Vallejo, California shot and killed 22-year-old Sean Monterrosa while responding to a suspected looting call. Officers say he ran toward them while reaching for what appeared to be a gun, but later confirmed it was a hammer.
SHAWNY WILLIAMS, POLICE CHIEF, VALLEJO, CALIFORNIA: The district attorney is going to look at this and our internal affairs unit is going to look at it.
YOUNG: As calls for justice spread on the streets, a similar investigation is now underway in Tacoma, Washington. In March, Manual Ellis was heard saying, I can't breathe. He died in police custody according to a Sheriff Department spokesman. The case in the wake of fluids death now getting added attention.
GOV. JAY INSLEE (D-WA): It is a top priority for her and it is a top priority for me. And we will be pushing to make sure there is a full and complete investigation of that incident.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Wait, wait, they're my people.
YOUNG: And in Chicago, another investigation launched looking into the action of these officers during an aggressive arrest last weekend. The family said they had done nothing wrong. Cook County says it's conducting a thorough independent investigation of the matter, including the conduct of the police officers involved.
TNIKIA TATE, WOMAN PULLED FROM CAR BY POLICE: 12 or 14 cops, they just start banging at my -- they just swarmed in and just start banging at my windows, banging at my car. They had their weapons drawn.
YOUNG: Cedric Alexander, a former president of the National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives believes the tactics, kneeling on an individual next are troubling and not part of police training.
CEDRIC ALEXANDER, LAW ENFORCEMENT EXPERT: There's no question about that. And training is so -- you know, it's so important in our police organizations today. This technique is not being taught. It's just not acceptable.
YOUNG: And in the days after George Floyd's case, activists and lawyers have been coming forward saying they want to spotlight what's happened to their clients or their friends. It's something they say needs more of a definite spotlight as they start looking into police cases across this country. Ryan Young, CNN Chicago.
VAUSE: Europe has also seen a wave of demonstrations both in solidarity with U.S. protesters, and to highlight their own racial problems. Thousands in Paris defied a ban on public gatherings earlier in the week and demonstrations are expected again today. CNN's Melissa Bell live this hour in Paris. So Melissa, how is this expected to play out in the hours ahead?
MELISSA BELL, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, what we've seen in Paris is a movement that has continued last night at noon, to the north of France, John. 2,000 people gathered once again in the name of this young man Adama Traore, that they gathered around on Tuesday night in Paris. A young man who died shortly after being taken into police custody just under four years ago.
The question of whether the policeman responsible or not, will be prosecuted, it is of course at the heart of the anger here. But there is a lot of sympathy really, and inspiration coming from what's happening in America. You see it on their placards.
And of course, the support, the movements in support of what the protesters -- and the protest have continued elsewhere as well. We saw it yesterday in London. It took place outside the house of Dominic Cummings, the Downing Street advisor that has been at the heart of a considerable scandal in the United Kingdom.
We also saw in Barcelona, a candlelit vigil in the name of the protesters in the United States, and as far as in Poland, in Warsaw, a protest outside the American Embassy. So across Europe and reading a fairly sustained way, even if the numbers are not necessarily huge everywhere, we see that people are continuing to keep a very close eye on this movement which is striking in such a chord here, John.
VAUSE: What's interesting about the Adama Traore case, and forgive my pronunciation, it happened four years ago, July 2016. And there was no video of what happened as opposed to, you know, the situation of George Floyd in the U.S., but yet there has still been this outrage. So people are still, you know, demanding an investigation because some of the police are questioned. And so, this is maintained, this has continued on for such a long time.
BELL: I think it's a really good point, John. And the reason for that is really the energy and determination of the Traore family and particularly Adama Traore's his sister, Assa, who explained to us when we spoke her earlier this week that she continued this combat in the name of her little brothers, because she doesn't want to lose another one.
Now, the case is not quite resolved here in France. What also prompted Tuesday's protest here in Paris, John, was the latest episode of this saga, which was this publication of a new medical report, which essentially suggested that Adama Traore had pre-existing medical conditions that were responsible for his death, thereby exonerating there's rundowns involved. That is rejected by the Traore family. Hence, that fresh outpouring of anger, John.
VAUSE: Melissa, thank you. Melissa Bell there with early morning live shot in Paris, 8:40 in the morning. I appreciate it. Thank you. Well, the disappearance of the British toddler Madeleine McCann has agonized her parents, baffled police, and haunted Britain since 2007. Now, police say there is a significant new lead focusing on a man who is already in a German prison. CNN's Isa Soares has details.
(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) ISA SOARES, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Madeleine McCann has been gone for 13 years, the little blonde girl with blue-green eyes. Now, there's a new suspect in her disappearance. He's a German pedophile, authority say, A 43-year-old man who is currently serving a long jail sentence.
The suspect who has previously been convicted for sexually abusing children was living in the Algarve in the south of Portugal when Madeleine vanished from her bed there. As they home in on the suspect, police are appealing for fresh information on two vehicles linked to him. This distinctive camper van and this Jaguar car which police say he registered in somebody else's name, the day after Maddie disappeared.
Critical for the case too, this phone number which police said dial the suspects phone on the night of Maddie's disappearance.
MARK CRANWELL, DETECTIVE: There may be people in the past who have been caught fearful to come forward to the place. And my message is to anybody that has information, did he speak to you in confidence and tell you what happened that night?
SOARES: Little Maddie then-almost four vanished from a family's holiday apartment in Portugal on the third of May 2007 while her parents dined at a nearby tappers bar. Her twin siblings were asleep nearby. Her disappearance has led to an exhaustive investigation with over 600 individuals scrutinized and four suspects identified and discounted.
On the 10th anniversary of her disappearance, not much have changed from her parents Kate and Gerry McCann.
KATE MCCANN, MOTHER OF MADELEINE: It's a huge amount of time. In some ways, it feels like it was a few weeks ago and other times it has felt really long.
MCCANN: Our hope that Madeleine being out there is now less than it was almost 10 years ago. I mean, apart from those first 48 hours, nothing actually has changed since then.
SOARES: Following on from these developments, the McCann's have issued a statement. They say, "All we have ever wanted is to find her, uncover the truth and bring those responsible to justice. We will never give up hope of finding Madeleine alive. But whatever the outcome may be, we need to know as we need to find peace."
Now authorities in Germany, Portugal and right here in the U.K. say they're not prepared to give out any more information regarding the suspect. But it is important to note that in Germany, authorities are treating this investigation as murder. Isa Soares CNN, London.
VAUSE: When we come back, Iran has released an American Navy veteran, but what did the U.S. offer up for his freedom?
VAUSE: Iran has released a U.S. Navy veteran who'd been sitting in jail for more than a year. Michael White traveled to Iran back in 2018. He said he was visiting his girlfriend. But long after he arrived, he was arrested and sentenced to 13 years in prison for insulting Iran's supreme leader posting private information online. More details now from CNN's Kylie Atwood.
KYLIE ATWOOD, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Michael White an American citizen and U.S. Navy veteran was released from Iran on Thursday. His mother came out and said that she had been living a nightmare for 683 days. He had been detained in Iran for almost two years. And she was thankful that that nightmare was coming to a close.
Now, President Trump put out a tweet touting and celebrating the release of Michael White. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo put out a statement saying that the U.S. was looking forward to Michael White reuniting with his family. And also celebrated Brian Hook, the Special Representative for Iran at the State Department who facilitated this release, as well as the Swiss government because they represent the U.S. diplomatic interests in Iran given that the U.S. and Iran do not have diplomatic relations.
Now, we should also note that today that there was an Iranian-American doctor who had violated us sanctions on Iran, who was also released as part of this deal, a U.S. official tells us. And the other important thing to consider here is that there also other Americans who are still detained in Iran.
This is a great day for Michael White and his family, but there are other Americans who are watching their families here in the U.S. and they are really concerned. This was an extremely hard day for them because their loved ones are still being wrongfully detained. Kylie Atwood, CNN, the State Department.
VAUSE: Well, it's almost with us again, the release of the jobless claims in the U.S., a grim depressing reminder of the economic carnage caused by the corona pandemic. The jobs report is expected to show another eight million jobs were lost. Here to talk about all this, John Defterios from Abu Dhabi.
So John, we've been looking at these numbers. They've been coming down over a period of time, but you know, not fast enough?
JOHN DEFTERIOS, CNN BUSINESS EMERGING MARKETS EDITOR: Clearly, not fast enough, John. And there's the huge question mark about the second half of the year in terms of job recreation, of course. This jobs report card could get a failing grade because of all this destruction that we've seen.
The silver lining is we could be at the bottom here in May or slow me down dramatically in the month of June. As you noted, one of the big numbers, but let's take a look at the three big numbers to focus in on. Lost jobs for the month should be around eight million, something you've probably never seen in your lifetime again, John. That would take the total to 28.5 million since the start of the pandemic, and the unemployment rate close to 20 percent.
We haven't been at that level since the Great Depression in 1933 when they kept the annualized figures, and we were just a shade below 25 percent. Obviously, because of all the protests we see in the United States about inequality in the death of George Floyd, of course, there's going to be more focused on black unemployment.
There was great progress in 2019 even going into to February 2020, and then it just went like this. We went right above 16 percent again. And that's despite all the frontline workers from the black community. It's extraordinary how vulnerable they are.
And overall, something I was touching upon here, this kind of a great belief by President Trump and even the investors on Wall Street with the rally we've seen in the Stock Market that will see a snapback that's going to happen very quickly for jobs. Oxford economics would suggest you'll get the job recreation, but even by the end of 2020, we could see an unemployment rate of 10 percent, which is more than double the average in the United States, the normal. Now we're in this new normal of craziness and very high unemployment.
VAUSE: Yes. And the U.S. does its jobless numbers differently from other the people around the world, whereas temps in here it's really high compared to other places which have different ways to calculate it. But what is interesting is that even though there has been this pandemic which has caused so much economic pain, not everyone's feeling the pain, right, there's some people doing quite well?
DEFTERIOS: Yes, particularly the upper 10th of one percent. Let's put it that way. A leading think tank shining the light on the billionaires of the United States and the inequalities that do exist. Let's take a look at the numbers that we're talking about, John, it's glaring in a word here. 614 billionaires, more than we had in 2019. The regained $535 billion over the wealth since the trough here of the pandemic really took hold on Wall Street on March 18.
The total that they have now is about $3.5 trillion of wealth. That is equal to, John, what an extraordinary number, 17 percent of American GDP. There are some standouts here. There's been a huge demand for Amazon during the pandemic. And that's certainly helped Jeff Bezos with his wealth earned since March 18 at $36 billion. Mark Zuckerberg kind of having conflicts with his staff now about handling the Donald Trump seen a return of $30 billion dollars in that timeframe.
And you talk about a juxtaposition, seeing these billionaires recreate over half a trillion dollars of wealth since the trough of the pandemic, and you have 43 million Americans filing for jobless claims in the same time period. That is extraordinary.
VAUSE: It makes you think, doesn't it? JOHN, thank you. John Defterios there in Abu Dhabi. Just ahead on CNN NEWSROOM, a legendary American quarterback apologizing for comments he made about kneeling during the national anthem. What his teammates are saying now.
VAUSE: One of the biggest stars in American football has apologized for controversial comments he made about demonstrations against racism in the United States. New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees said on Monday it's disrespectful for players to take a knee during the national anthem. That's what another NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick has been doing for a while and others have followed in his step. CNN's Patrick Snell though has more on Brees' apology and how his teammates are reacting.
PATRICK SNELL, CNN INTERNATIONAL SPORTS ANCHOR: Drew Brees is a very popular figure in American sport, but his comments during an interview with Yahoo Finance on Wednesday had fans, fellow athletes, and even his own teammates in an uproar.
Early Thursday morning Brees taken to Instagram to apologize. He said, "In an attempt to talk about respect, unity, and solidarity centered around the American flag and the national anthem, I made comments that were insensitive and completely missed the mark on the issues we are facing right now as a country. They lacked awareness in any type of compassion or empathy." Brees added that he needed to do less talking and more listening.
Meantime wide receiver Michael Thomas who was one of the first Saints players to criticize Brees' comments, after the apology, Thomas tweeted, "He apologized and I accepted it because that's what we were taught to do as Christians. Now back to the movement. #GeorgeFloyd." Fellow teammate Demario Davis said the apology showed true leadership.
DEMARIO DAVIS, LINEBACKER, NEW ORLEANS SAINTS: He admitted he missed the mark. So for him to come out and say, you know, I missed the mark, I've been insensitive, but what I'm going to start doing is listening and learning from the black community and finding ways that I can help them, I think that's a model for all of America. Because historically in general, most of America has missed the mark.
SNELL: And the question now is how many players will feel empowered to defile league ban and kneel during the anthem when the NFL season starts this fall? Patrick Snell, CNN, Atlanta.
VAUSE: Professional basketball in the U.S. could soon be back but to paraphrase Dr. McCoy, "it's basketball gym, but not as we know it." The NBA is looking to restart the season at the end of July with 22 of the league's 30 teams involved. The player's union is now considering this plan. The season though is contingent on a deal with Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida, which would host the games and house the teams as well as the staff. Let's see what happens.
Thank you for watching CNN NEWSROOM. I'm John Vause. Please stay with us -- a short break. I'll be back at the top of the hour with a lot more news. You're watching CNN, the world's news leader.