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Anderson Cooper 360 Degrees
Capitol Officer Charged With Obstruction In Case Tied To January 6; Interview With Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD); How Steve Bannon Stoked The Flames; TX Teachers Told TO Balance Holocaust Books With "Opposing" Views; William Shatner On Historic Space Flight; 90-Year- Old William Shatner Makes History As Oldest Person In Space; Capitol Officer Charged With Obstruction In Case Tied To Jan. 6; New HBO Documentary "Four Hours At The Capitol" Provides New Look At January 6. Aired 8-9p ET
Aired October 15, 2021 - 20:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ERIN BURNETT, CNN HOST: That rattled the nation, it rattled the world, and it led for calls for lawmakers to receive personal protection when in public, and yet this has happened again tonight.
Amess was married, the father of five children. He was 69. His alleged attacker has been arrested. Thanks for joining us. AC 360 starts now.
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: Good evening. This has been a big week in the pursuit of justice for the January 6th attack on the U.S. Capitol and is a fresh reminder of what happened that day. What's really at stake, there is new video just released by the Justice Department of the attack on the Capitol.
This first video shows what the Justice Department says is one of the first breaches of the Capitol. The person you see there is a member of the so-called Proud Boys using a stolen police riot shield to smash a window.
Interior video shows more than a dozen rioters then climbing through that window and again, prosecutors say they were among the first to enter the Capitol building.
The second video also captures a breach of the building. You can see people rushing through a door then marauding down a hallway. Then you'll see an angle -- a new angle of the confrontation with Officer Eugene Goodman. You can also hear this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hey, where are they counting the [bleep] votes?
Where are they counting the votes?
Hey, where are they counting the votes? Where are they counting the votes? Where are they counting? Where are they counting?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: They wanted to know where the lawmakers are who are quote, "counting the votes," unquote. Their intentions, clearly not good and not peaceful, and anyone who tells you differently is lying.
This new video comes during a week that have seen folks on opposing sides of the attack square off and looking at this new video, it remains remarkable and frankly pretty sickening that there are actually opposing sides on what happened that day.
On one side, you have those who work for the former President reportedly either avoiding getting served with a subpoena or using delaying tactics to appear and so far, at least one, Steve Bannon has defied a subpoena deadline.
On the other side, you have the House Select Committee investigating the attack. The Committee says it will take its first steps next week to try and bring criminal contempt charges against Bannon. They say others could face the same if they don't cooperate. And from the White House, there is breaking news tonight. The President telling CNN's Kaitlan Collins that those who refuse subpoenas should be prosecuted by the Department of Justice and we'll talk to Kaitlan in a moment.
Before we do, more news about January 6th. For the first time, we learned today a Capitol Police officer is facing criminal charges in connection to the insurrection and its aftermath. U.S. Capitol Police Officer Michael Riley, appeared in Federal Court this afternoon on obstruction of justice charges.
Prosecutors say that Riley, who is a 25-year veteran of the force told a rioter to delete incriminating social media posts. According to the indictment, Riley exchanged several Facebook messages with this rioter following the attack, including this one saying, quote, "I'm a Capitol Police officer who agrees with your political stance. Takedown the part about being in the building. They are currently investigating and everyone who was in the building is going to be charged. Just looking out."
CNN's Jessica Schneider joins us now from Capitol Hill. So, what more do we know about this officer and these charges?
JESSICA SCHNEIDER, CNN JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: Well, Anderson so these are two counts of obstruction, each carrying a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison each. The first count is for this officer allegedly instructing the rioter to delete all these Facebook posts from his feed, essentially tipping him off that there was an F.B.I. investigation.
The second count goes to this Capitol Police Officer Michael Angelo Riley deleting his own interactions with this rioter trying to take them all off his social media page. Now, this indictment details more than a dozen messages between this officer and the rioter.
At one point, this officer tells the rioter this: "They're arresting dozens of people a day. Everyone that was in the building engaged in violent acts or destruction of property, and they are all being charged federally with felonies." So sending out this warning shot to the rioter.
Well, it turns out, this rioter was arrested on January 19th. And then the very next day, the rioter got in touch with Officer Riley telling him, he had basically spilled the beans to the F.B.I., had showed them all of these messages. And what does Officer Riley allegedly do?
Well, he turns around and then deletes all of these interactions on his Facebook post. His Facebook page, Anderson, and that is what is leading to this second charge of obstruction here.
COOPER: Wow. Jessica Schneider, fascinating. Appreciate it. Thank you.
Now to CNN's Kaitlan Collins at the White House for more on what the President said to her about those who defied the January 6 Committee subpoenas. So, what exactly did the President say?
KAITLAN COLLINS, CNN CHIEF WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well, it is notable, Anderson, because the White House so far has declined to really weigh in on this, saying it's up to the Justice Department how they are going to proceed with this because we do know when that Select Committee gets back to Washington next week, they are expected to vote on these criminal contempt charges for Steve Bannon after he said he was going to defy their subpoena.
So we asked the President tonight, what is his response to this? What does he think of people who are defying these subpoenas and should the Justice Department prosecute them and this is what he told us.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOE BIDEN (D), PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I hope that the Committee goes after him and holds him accountable.
COLLINS: Should they be prosecuted by the Justice Department?
BIDEN: I do, yes.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COLLINS: Now, what's notable about that, of course, is not just the President weighing in, the most so far, Anderson, on what he thinks the repercussions should be for people like Steve Bannon, who are defying these subpoenas and others who may do so as well. But also because, of course, the White House says they operate independently from the Justice Department.
And so, a Justice Department spokesperson has responded to the President's comments to me tonight, and they said the Department of Justice will make its own independent decision and all prosecutions based solely on the facts and the law. Period. Full stop.
So asserting that they will make their own decisions over what is going to happen once we do see the House vote next week, because of course, Anderson after that, it goes to the Justice Department.
But I think just looking back and taking a step back at what the President said tonight, it speaks to the level of the uniqueness with which he is viewing this situation, because of course, remember, he also made the decision in part with White House counsel to not assert executive privilege over those documents that his predecessor wanted shielded from this Committee.
That's a fight that's likely to play out over the next several weeks. I just think it speaks to the level of involvement that the President has here and what he thinks is the urgency when it comes to this January 6th investigation.
COOPER: Kaitlan Collins, appreciate it. Joining us right now is Democratic Congressman Jamie Raskin, a member of the House Select Committee, investigating the January 6 attack. He also served as lead manager in the second impeachment trial of the former President.
Congressman Raskin, I appreciate you being with us. Well, I'm wondering, first of all, your reaction to President Biden weighing in on this, obviously, the Justice Department is saying that it is going to, quote "make its own independent decisions," as they certainly should on any prosecutions?
REP. JAMIE RASKIN (D-MD): Well, the first thing he said was that the Committee should aggressively enforce our right to get people's testimony and to get the documents we've subpoenaed, and there is no problem with that.
I also don't have a problem with him as a citizen like me, saying he hopes the Department of Justice will aggressively enforce the law, so people don't get away with committing crimes like this.
Obviously, four years of Donald Trump has made everybody a little bit rusty in terms of executive branch relationships with the President and law enforcement in the Department of Justice, and I don't think he was telling the Department of Justice what to do, but they will make their own decision and we have confidence that the Attorney General will do the right thing and D.O.J. will make the right decision.
COOPER: Has the White House been in contact with your committee? And has the White House Counsel been involved in the engagement with former Chief of Staff Mark Meadows or other administration officials to determine to what degree they can testify without violating any kind of executive privilege?
RASKIN: Well, let's see. I'm not quite sure I got your whole question there.
COOPER: Has the White House been in contact with your committee and been involved with the discussions with Mark Meadows or others?
RASKIN: No, I'm not aware of that. Look, what we're doing -- our committee is charged with assembling a complete and comprehensive documentary record that explains what happened to us on January 6th. Who were the criminal elements that attacked the U.S. Congress who tried to overthrow the election? What were the motivations behind it? How did they work? Who paid for it? And so on.
So, we're in the process of collecting all that information. Most people have been very cooperative, people are coming forward, even some people who would prefer not to cooperate, have engaged with the committee, and then we've got those like Steve Bannon who are taking their lead from Donald Trump and think that they're just above the law, and they are the only citizens of the United States who don't have to respond to a subpoena from a court or from the U.S. Congress.
And so that's why we're going to be meeting on Tuesday evening, and there will be, I predict a criminal referral. We're going to try to charge these people with criminal contempt. That's a crime when Steve Bannon did not show up, when he was told to show up with documents and to testify before the U.S. Congress.
COOPER: There are a lot of people who have weighed in saying that they think, you know, this could -- you know, Bannon can -- it can go on in the courts, it can drag on for years longer than this Committee will be in session. Do you agree with that? Or do you believe that this will -- it could move fast?
RASKIN: No, if the Department of Justice acts like a real Department of Justice, and I think they will, as you know, they just reminded the President that they're going to make their own decisions based on the facts and the law. I think they're serious about their job.
I think if they do their job, and I have confidence that Attorney General Garland will do his job, they will move for criminal prosecution of people who are openly flouting in order for the U.S. Congress to come and testify on an issue that maybe the most important question of an attack on the U.S. government since the Civil War or the War of 1812.
And when you see that footage, you understand what is at stake. There was an attempt to mobilize violence against the Congress, to attack Members of Congress, to attack the Vice President of the United States all in order to overthrow a presidential election result.
That was the first time, Anderson, in U.S. history when the counting of Electoral College votes was delayed by four or five hours because of this coordinated assault, both an inside assault against the Vice President, and then this massive violent mob attack.
COOPER: Just finally, I'm wondering what you make of this Capitol Police officer now indicted on obstruction of justice charges for being in contact with a rioter and advising him to delete evidence and allegedly, according to authorities, himself deleting also evidence.
RASKIN: I mean, I don't know anything about the underlying facts. It's an eye popping story of course. As the Chair of the Civil Rights and Civil Liberties Subcommittee of the Oversight Committee, we've been having hearings for two years about the rise of violent white supremacy and domestic extremism and terrorism in America, and we have found many cases of white supremacist and extremist infiltration of police departments.
And so if this turns out to be true, the allegations are quite shocking that you would have a Capitol officer trying to coordinate with the insurrectionists who attacked the Capitol, to suppress evidence, to destroy evidence in order to, you know, to throw off the police who might be on their trail. I mean, that's an outrageous thing.
And again, I have no idea whether these allegations are true, but there is the suggestion that this officer confessed his political support for the insurrectionists.
COOPER: Congressman Raskin, I appreciate your time. Thank you.
RASKIN: Thanks for having me, Anderson.
COOPER: Up next, a closer look at Steve Bannon. The new details recently revealed about how he stoked the flames of the insurrection.
And later on a much lighter note, which I think we could certainly all use to end this week, my conversation with William Shatner upon returning from his epic voyage.
COOPER: Again, our breaking news from the White House, President Biden telling CNN's Kaitlan Collins for those who refuse subpoenas from the January 6th Committee should be prosecuted by the Department of Justice. And as we noted, the Committee will take their first steps next week on criminal contempt charges against Steve Bannon for refusing to comply with his subpoena.
He seemingly had a heavy hand on that day and leading up to it. You may have thought after he was fired from his White House job that he moved on, well, the reality is very different. Here is CNN's Tom Foreman.
TOM FOREMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): He is not ready to speak to Congress about the violence of January 6th, but Steve Bannon is talking plenty on his daily podcast whipping his followers into a frenzy.
STEVE BANNON, FORMER DONALD TRUMP SENIOR ADVISER (voice over): Elections have consequences. Stolen elections have catastrophic consequences and that's what we're seeing in this country right now.
And we need your blood to boil. We need to be in a situation you're not going to back down, okay.
FOREMAN (voice over): He's done it all along. He appeared to confirm reports that just days before the insurrection, he was on the phone with Donald Trump discussing how to kill the Biden presidency in the crib.
BANNON: Forty two percent of the American people, four two percent of the American people think that Biden did not win the presidency legitimately. We told you from the very beginning, just expose it, just expose it. Never back down, never give up and this thing will implode.
FOREMAN (voice over): Promoting the big lie of election fraud fits Bannon's longstanding affection for radical right-wing theories and his apparent appetite for conflict.
BANNON: If you think they're going to give you your country back without a fight, you are sadly mistaken.
FOREMAN (voice over): Take his fascination with the book "The Fourth Turning," which argues every 80 years or so, cataclysmic upheavals are necessary to political and social realignment.
BANNON: Turnings are like the seasons, every turning is necessary.
FOREMAN (voice over): Bannon was so taken with the idea, he made a movie about it, savaging liberals, blasting traditional governments. And as one film critic put it, "pushing a clear message."
ANN HORNADAY, FILM CRITIC, "THE WASHINGTON POST": Bring on the apocalypse. There's an almost fetishistic desire to see everything blow up. It's almost like he is inviting a cleansing fire to just raise the edifice, raise the institutions. I think it's that dramatic.
BILL MAHER, TALK SHOW HOST: Steve Bannon is over here. Steve Bannon.
FOREMAN (voice over): Bannon's turns in the spotlight have not always thrilled his most famous boss, who was reportedly annoyed when Bannon showed up on the cover of "Time," which Trump clearly craves.
He was pushed out of Trump's immediate orbit, but never far away.
MAHER: I would love to know what advice you would give to Donald Trump if he didn't leave, even after he lost, because I saw Hillary Clinton --
BANNON: You're obsessed with this.
MAHER: I am obsessed with this.
BANNON: You're obsessed with this thing. He's not going to leave.
MAHER: Wait a second --
BANNON: Just because -- I know he is having the time of his life.
MAHER: Well, because he is an insane narcissist.
FOREMAN (voice over): And since the uprising, Bannon has been firmly in the losing candidate's corner, trotting out guests to insist the riot was the work of Antifa and undercover Federal agents. RUDY GIULIANI, FORMER PRESIDENT TRUMP'S PERSONAL ATTORNEY: Two
hundred and twenty six Antifa members were tasked with making that -- what should have been a peaceful protest, a riot.
FOREMAN (voice over): And insisting prosecutors are dead wrong to say these are Trump's and his people.
BANNON: Either they're totally incompetent or they're lying to you. Right? They are either totally incompetent or they're lying to you. They are either they're totally incompetent or they're lying to you -- pick them.
FOREMAN (on camera): There are no facts to back that up. But listen to Bannon's podcasts, watch his interviews, and you will see that he has very little use for facts unless they back this notion that America as we know it must end, so America as he would have it can begin -- Anderson.
COOPER: Tom Foreman, thanks.
Perspective now from CNN political analyst and "New York Times" Washington correspondent, Maggie Haberman.
So Maggie, Bannon's time at the White House with the former President was certainly short lived. He obviously has not strayed far away from the Trump orbit. No one ever, it seems does, no matter how egregious their crimes or their alleged crimes, where do you see this all going with him?
MAGGIE HABERMAN, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: I think that where it may go is he is going to file some kind of a lawsuit, or someone will file some kind of a lawsuit and possibly the former President to try to raise the question of whether executive privilege would apply to Bannon. And now, there is not actually not a lot of case law on this, if, you know, just a commonsense reading of the law looks at it as Bannon was not working in the executive chamber when this event happened.
He was not a formal adviser to Trump in the White House. So why would executive privilege apply to him? I think they're going to try, at least at the moment, I think they're going to try they might change their plans, but to try to test that theory of the legal case and see whether they can get a more expansive version of executive privilege.
Beyond that, I don't expect much to change, and then the question, Anderson becomes, as it always has, for the last five years, is the D.O.J. going to do something? Are they going to move? If not, Bannon is going to sort of wave this around like a bloody shirt and say, look, you know, they shot at me and missed.
COOPER: Even if the D.O.J. does move, and you know, there's a question of A, how long would it take? How long then would any kind of subsequent court case take? He could still wear, you know, even if it's a misdemeanor or whatever the charge is, he would still wear that as, you know, as a promotion of his podcast or whatever, you know, he is marketing himself as now.
HABERMAN: No question. This is all -- this all feeds into a commercialization of, you know, this form of Trumpism that is taking place on podcasts and taking place on certain networks, you know, which is all about rallying around Trump's false claims that there was widespread fraud in the election that cost him the election and suggesting that everything else that has taken place is illegitimate.
The January 6th either, you know, didn't happen the way -- everyone saw it happen on television. It played out in real time or that there were -- you know, there were actors, or there were agitators, and so forth and so on -- agitators not actors.
You know, I think that you will see him doing more of that. There is something of a scenario here, right, where, you know, Bannon is essentially acting as if heads he wins, tails you lose. And this is what happens when you very slowly start to pull away guardrails and you start to erode norms. You don't end up here overnight, but you do end up here.
COOPER: What are you hearing about the former President in terms of running, not running? His comments about this week about Republicans skipping out on the '22 and '24 elections? Is this just him you know, ranting in the fever swamp of Mar-a-Lago? Is it him ratcheting up pressure more in the G.O.P. to you know, to just help him? What is it?
HABERMAN: I think it's a little of the above. I don't think this has anything to do with him running, Anderson or not running. At the moment, you know, according to everything I hear, I think he is running. Could that change? Absolutely. And maybe he doesn't. But if the election -- if the election were in a few months, or if he had to make a decision today, I think his decision would be to run. I think that that statement he put out suggesting that, you know, Republicans should make election fraud, as he puts it, a central issue for 2022 or 2024, and saying, don't vote. You know, if that's not the case, obviously, that made a lot of senior Republicans groan when they saw this.
This is the kind of thing that he did ahead of Georgia's run offs earlier this year for the Senate. The Republicans lost both of those seats. They're very concerned about a repeat of this. That particular statement was, you know, Trump railing and being -- you know, enabled by somebody who works for him. Most people around Trump know that that statement wasn't helpful. But there are still a few people who are willing to put that kind of thing out.
COOPER: But I mean, if he runs that is clearly what he runs on and everybody in the G.O.P. who is running as well is going to have to -- you know, we already saw Chuck Grassley last night kind of tiptoeing through hoops to try to avoid, you know, repeating what he said in the immediate aftermath of the insurrection, which was very negative against Trump. He is now completely unwilling to publicly utter those words again.
HABERMAN: That's right. And look, we're at a point where, you know, Chuck Grassley, for instance, is running for election again. He has been in his seat a very long time.
Republicans who are looking to win in 2022 are certainly looking to avoid incurring Trump's wrath on this, and I've been saying for a while that 2023 and 2024 for both Democrats and Republicans is going to be a huge focus in those two years on certifying the next presidential election.
I think you will see Trump trying to point to this. I don't think that it's going to motivate voters the way he thinks it is, and then that becomes a different issue.
COOPER: Maggie Haberman, appreciative it. Thank you.
Coming up, new audio revealing Texas school officials telling teachers they need to teach opposing views of the Holocaust. Ed Lavandera is in Texas with this story, next.
COOPER: Across America, school officials and parents have been clashing over what should and shouldn't be taught in the classroom. Much of the focus has been on critical race theory. In Texas, there is fallout tied to another education law that took effect last month on race and racism.
Recently in one school district, an administrator told teachers how to follow that State law and as an example said that when teaching about the Holocaust, they had to give students books with opposing perspectives on the Holocaust. CNN's Ed Lavandera reports.
TEACHER, SOUTHLAKE, TEXAS: Being told to get rid of your library or opposing viewpoints on what they called on like controversial subjects.
ED LAVANDERA, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): To tell this story, this school teachers says she has to speak out under the cover of secrecy. She says she fears never being able to get a job as an educator again.
TEACHER: Teachers are actively getting threats if they are speaking out at this point, threats to destroy their lives, to come for their license, to go after their families.
LAVANDERA (voice-over): Last week, Carol Independent School District administrators in the suburb of Southlake Texas held training sessions laying out the guidelines teachers needed to follow to pick the books for their classroom libraries. At the heart of what unfolded during these sessions is a controversial new state law that tries to control how racial issues and history are taught in schools across Texas. The law states that if a teacher engages in a discussion of a controversial issue of public policy, or social affairs, they're required to explore such issues from diverse and contending perspectives. Part of the training was recorded by a teacher.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Just try to remember the concepts of 3979. And make sure that if you have a book on the Holocaust, that you have one that has opposing, that has other perspectives.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: How do you oppose the Holocaust?
LAVANDERA (on-camera): In that audio recording, you hear this administrator say this absurd idea that there should be an opposing view of the Holocaust taught. When you heard that, what was your reaction?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's almost like a joke. Like I don't even know what would an opposing view of the Holocaust speak. We're not being asked to have opposing views on colonization. We're not being asked to have opposing views on Christopher Columbus Day or Thanksgiving. We're being asked to have opposing views on only certain things. And that's where the problem lies really.
LAVANDERA (on-camera): What are those certain things that you're being asked to have opposing views on?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Civil rights movement, Holocaust, the Civil War, slavery, women's rights.
LAVANDERA (voice-over): The school administrator in the meeting had tried to ease the frustrations and anger of the teachers.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You are professionals. We hired you as professionals, we trust you with our children. So if you think the book is OK, then let's go with it. And whatever happens, we will fight it together.
LAVANDERA (voice-over): The school district superintendent apologized for any hurt and confusion this has caused adding, there are not two sides of the Holocaust and that the district is working to add clarity to the expectations for teachers.
But in Southlake finding clarity has been impossible since the controversial Texas law went into effect. Several teachers who have spoken to CNN say a group of conservative and highly organized parents are the driving force of this controversy. Pushing school administrators to limit discussions on racial and social justice issues.
RUSSELL MARYLAND, SOUTHLAKE PARENT: It's very sad, the situation that we're in right now.
LAVANDERA (voice-over): Russell Maryland is a longtime Southlake resident, his three children have gone to schools here. The former Dallas Cowboys defensive lineman has spent the last three years working with dozens of other parents to develop a diversity curriculum for the city schools,
MARYLAND: The world is changing. The city is changing. And, unfortunately, you have a set of people in this town that are fearful of the change. And what do the fearful do, they instill fear.
LAVANDERA (voice-over): The council's efforts have gone nowhere. Maryland says the latest Southlake school controversy is embarrassing.
MARYLAND: It's just ridiculous of it, is just incredible. But it's happening. It's happening here in our community. As a warning to everybody out there, if you don't stand up right now, then that ignorance is coming to a town close to you.
LAVANDERA (on-camera): What do you think is driving this push to control how these issues are taught in classrooms?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Fear and ignorance. I'm sure it's racism true, but it's fear and ignorance. And I keep saying this, I hope this is the catalyst for change in our district. But these changes, we can't continue to go on this way. We have to make a change. We cannot continue to be ignorant and behave this way.
We're beginning to feel like children of divorce. Like we have these two sides tightening and we're becoming collateral damage.
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: Ed Lavandera joins us now. What are some of the lawmakers who supported the Texas law saying about this -- what happened in Southlake?
LAVANDERA: Well, most of the Republicans who supported this law haven't really spoken out publicly about what's happening here in Southlake. There is one state senator from this area who did say that he believed the school districts applied this law incorrectly to this situation. But this is exactly what the teachers we've spoken with, to with and educators are saying is that this law is so vaguely written that it is putting these teachers in such a precarious situation. They feel like they are being fed to the wolves, and that they're teaching in a chilling and dystopian reality right now. Anderson.
COOPER: Ed Lavandera, appreciate it. Thanks.
So much needed light, lighter fare coming up. He's no longer legendary just for his role in Star Trek as Captain Kirk and a lifetime of epic performances. He's also now officially one of my favorite people to talk to him. Not exactly even sure why but my conversation with William Shatner after he traveled to the final frontier, next.
COOPER: This week as you no doubt know by now, legendary actor William Shatner became the oldest person ever to travel to space.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Two, one.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER (voice-over): Shatner was one of four passengers aboard the second human flight at the new Shepard spacecraft, the one developed by Jeff Bezos, his rocket company Blue Origin. I had the pleasure of speaking to him before he left and also when he came back to Earth and the significance of his historic flight was sinking in. Here's our conversation the first air today for my streaming show "Full Circle."
COOPER (on-camera): Can you just talk about a little bit of a, how are you feeling now? And how do you feel now looking back on the experience?
WILLIAM SHATNER, "STAR TREK" ACTOR: Well, I've been doing publicity today because I agreed to do it and, and it was an extraordinary event and I'm very happy to tell what I'm -- what I experienced. But it's like telling us 17 friends about your love affair, you know by the time you. By the time you get 15 --
COOPER (on-camera): Yes.
SHATNER: -- friends --
COOPER (on-camera): Yes, I know.
SHATNER: -- (INAUDIBLE). Listen I get (INAUDIBLE) and I don't know what happened, right. But --
COOPER (on-camera): You know what, and I'm sorry --
COOPER (on-camera): You know, what and I'm really sorry to be the 17th because, because -- let me just tell you. OK, go, but -- go ahead.
SHATNER: You're very, you're very special.
COOPER (on-camera): That's what they all say. It's not true. I'm just number 17.
SHATNER: That's right. Right. But if you last long enough in 17 that's your own life.
COOPER (on-camera): But OK, well, let me just say that the thing that interests me most about what you said is about death and about the ripping away of the blue sky and the sudden blackness and you said, is that, is that death? Is that what death is? And I just, I just thought that was such an original interesting take on it. Nobody else would have had that that -- SHATNER: It was, it was it was exactly that. I have a new album out
called Bill. And I bring it up, not only to say I got an album up there, but because I met in New York with the two gentlemen, Rob the poet and Dan Miller of the one of the things he accomplished was, They Might Be Giants. So he's the award winning musician. And part of the dinner conversation was let's put out a single with Bill and what he was, what he experiences up is three, four days before I went up.
COOPER (on-camera): Right.
SHATNER: What, what's good? So I said, well, you know, it's a little blue (INAUDIBLE) and we had kind of a thing going what it was going to be like, I called Rob this beautiful poet lyricist. But when it came down nice and everything we talked about a dinner in New York, throw it out there's nothing to do with what the reality. The reality is, it's passion. There's loud sound, nothing they trained us with acquainted as with the loud sounds, the loud the intense, lurching, the noise, the sound of the brouhaha and the sudden quiet as everything stopped.
And when everything stopped, and we went weightless, there are no words in the English language to describe weightlessness, because nobody's done it. So how do you describe? Well, I was wait, (INAUDIBLE) your skin, your hands, nothing. It's so unfamiliar. There's no English word or any word for that matter (INAUDIBLE) that can that can explain what it is. It's just weird. It's frightening. It's strange. It's interesting. And that was wonderful.
But I was focused, literally and figuratively, on that window, because I want to see what would happen. And what happened was this, the air, skin around Earth is approximately 50 miles thick at 2,500 miles an hour. That's a couple of beats in your throat. I saw the hole in the atmosphere as we went through it. And it was like a bullet (INAUDIBLE) and it went right by it -- as my eye follow it, it hit black space now.
The universe is beyond interested beyond mesmerizing. It's the total non-knowledge of that black. But in that moment, the sun shining in my face. All it was, was palpable, black, ugly, evil, bombed, ominous blackness. And my mind went to that I was hitting the face with that. And then I was hitting the face with the beauty and the gentleness and the nurturing of the Earth. And I saw death and I saw light for me, as well as for the Earth. And I felt such sad, sadness, empathy, sorrow for the Earth. The Earth is less bright than it used to be apparently.
And I know that the death and destruction that's going on one species, millions of species are disappearing, the beauty of the Earth that fostered all this gorgeous stuff, this intricate gorgeousness of life. Following life is disappearing and it will disappear. Unless will -- we as witnesses will disappear. And I went for that too. And when I landed, I was so filled with that emotion of life and death of everything. And the sorrow for the planet. I was overwhelmed and took me 15, 20 minutes before I could recapture myself and even today after telling it to 17 lovers, I have. I feel the message.
[20:45:13] COOPER (on-camera): It is, it's really just an honor to talk to you. And I really I -- I've always been a fan but I really am just an admirer now and I really think you're awesome and seriously anything I -- you ever need. I will if you ever need like somebody to pick up some Scout for you. I'll pick up some takeout for you.
SHATNER: Thank you so much.
COOPER (on-camera): All right.
SHATNER: Be careful of what you take out?
COOPER (on-camera): All right.
SHATNER: It's a pleasure to know you and I am an -- I'm an admirer of yours.
COOPER (on-camera): And by the way, a number 18 is not going to be nearly as fun. I don't know who it is. But, you know.
SHATNER: I've never, I've never going to go to a number 18.
COOPER (on-camera): William Shatner, take care. Be well.
SHATNER: Thank you. Same to you. Bye, bye.
COOPER: The incomparable William Shatner that first aired this afternoon on my streaming show "Full Circle" which airs live 6:00 p.m. Eastern Monday, Wednesday and Friday at cnn.com/fullcircle. Check it out.
Still ahead, on breaking news. The investigation to January 6 riot at the Capitol, plus never before seen video and interviews from a incredibly powerful documentary, particularly inside the attack. That's next.
COOPER: Following breaking news and the investigation to the January 6 riot at the Capitol. Tonight, President Biden told CNN's Kaitlan Collins, the -- those who refused subpoenas from the January 6 committee should be prosecuted by the Department of Justice. Also, U.S. Capitol Police officer was indicted on obstruction charges in connection to the insurrection.
We're also getting a new look at the chaos and terror of that day. There's a new HBO documentary it's called Four Hours At The Capitol. And it shows minute by terrifying minute what it was like for the lawmakers and staffers inside the building, what the police officers were up against. I want to show you a quick preview.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There was no punches, they were hitting officers with poles and pieces of scaffolding that they had taken off the inaugural stage. With hammers. Number one point a gun actually fell out of one of the individuals in the crowd. Of course I didn't have anywhere to put it, so I had a long trench coat the entire day of fighting that person's gun, that person gun inside my trench coat the entire day.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think if we had poor weapons and start shooting I think there would have been a large loss of life, maybe on both sides.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: The HBO documentary film Four Hours At The Capitol debuts on October 20th. I spoke with its producer Dan Reed earlier.
COOPER: (on-camera): Dan, this film that you have made is remarkable. I mean as are many of the films you've done I mean it, it takes you into it in a way that is just relentless and the horror of it is, you know, it -- the reality of it and the horror of it comes out so, so clearly. And it's so important given that the former president and, you know, his acolytes are trying to pretend it didn't happen that way.
DAN REED, PRODUCER, FOUR HOURS AT THE CAPITOL: Yes, I think the contrast between some of the statements made, you know, after January 6 and the really brutal hand to hand almost medieval combat the reality of you know, having difficulty cops fingers torn off and cops getting pretty much, you know, almost murdered by the mob. I think that's pretty stark. You know, this was a very violent assault.
And many you know, 140 cops are injured and, you know, one later died is you know. But I mean, just the, the reality that the video footage shows and this was like the most videoed event in history probably. There's no doubt the record leaves no doubt as to how violent and brutal this assault was.
COOPER: I want to play another clip from the film. It's one you've released exclusively to us. It's where a staff assistant for Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi retails about her experiences while hiding.
LEAH HAN, STAFFER, SPEAKER PELOSI'S OFFICE: Are they going to like torture us? Like am I going to get raped? Like I don't know, like, am I going to get shot? Like do they have weapons? And then they started being in our door. And they just didn't get in. I still don't know how they didn't but like they didn't. Like, again, maybe they just didn't think it was worth trying to open because it looks like there's nothing back there.
Like I thought I was going to die. Like I didn't think I was going to go home that day. And I knew that if I texted my parents that like I love them. Like I was going to cry and I just I couldn't -- I was not going to let myself cry. I just figured that, you know, what I'm going to die like my parents will just know that I love them. So. This is why I didn't text them.
COOPER (on-camera): You know, the randomness of survival in a situation like that it's terrifying how arbitrary it can be who lives who dies, who gets injured, who doesn't that person banging on the door three times and then deciding to move on with the rest of, you know, his friends and, you know, other people who were invading the Capitol. Had three people decided to join him and bang on the door together, gotten something and banging through the door? There's no telling what would have happened.
REED: Yes, I think this came very close to being a bloodbath and a couple of the officers that, you know, we have exclusive interviews with describes how, you know, how they restrain themselves from using their firearms because they knew that once shooting started there would probably be high casualties on both sides.
And, and, you know, the restraint of the law enforcement officers is extraordinary. You can think of using good, Goodman, you know, the one of the heroes of today with his with his hand on his pistol, you know, and being threatened with all sorts of blood curdling threats and, you know, and actions and he still didn't draw his gun and he still didn't fire.
So I think, you know, the restraint of law enforcement on that day for all that the Capitol Police were clearly completely unprepared. They displayed extraordinary restraint. And I think that resulted in far fewer casualties than could have otherwise been.
COOPER (on-camera): Yes. Dan Reed, I really appreciate what you've done and thanks for your time.
REED: Thank you very much.
COOPER: Well, that does it for this edition "360."
Stay with us for the latest in the manhunt for Gabby Petito's fiance Brian Laundry who's been missing for more than a month. It's hosted by "360's" Randi Kaye. It's a CNN Special Report "GABBY PETITO THE HUNT FOR JUSTICE" is coming up after this break.