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Anderson Cooper 360 Degrees

Robb Elementary Survivor Tells Lawmakers: I Don't Want It To Happen Again; Republican Senator Toomey On Gun Policy Negotiators: We Are Making Progress; Man Arrested Near Justice Kavanaugh's Home Charged With Attempted Murder; Jan. 6 Panel Eyes Trump's Culpability Heading Into First Public Hearings; CA Dem. Voters Let It Be Known Crime, Homelessness Are Top Concerns; On The Frontlines Where Ukrainian Troops Are Now Using Powerful American Weapons; Search Ongoing For Woman Suspected Of Killing Elite Cyclist Anna Moriah Wilson. Aired 8-9p ET

Aired June 08, 2022 - 20:00   ET


ERIN BURNETT, CNN HOST: They are reacting and you know, he is sitting in New York, obviously, has got a new mayor, but it is the front and center.


BURNETT: Absolutely. All right, Harry Enten. Thank you very much.

ENTEN: Thank you.

BURNETT: And thanks so much to all of you. Anderson starts now.


JOHN BERMAN, CNN HOST: A fourth grader talks about watching her friends and teachers murdered, a mother describes the shrapnel that will be in her son's body for life. A doctor recounts the kinds of wounds once seen only on battlefields, but are now inflicted in movie theaters, synagogues, supermarkets, and most recently, fourth grade classrooms.

John Berman here in for Anderson.

Today, members of the House Oversight Committee heard from people whose lives were touched and changed forever by the mass shootings in Buffalo and Uvalde. Their testimony came with lawmakers in both chambers debating gun legislation, but before getting to where it all stands tonight, I want you to hear from these witnesses starting with Miah Cerillo, 11 years old, talking about the moment the gunman came into her fourth grade classroom at Robb Elementary School and her teacher tried her best to keep everyone safe.

We do want to warn you that it is graphic and difficult to hear, but it is important to hear it unfiltered, because no matter where you stand on the issue of guns, they shouldn't be happening.


MIAH CERILLO, UVALDE SHOOTING SURVIVOR: We were just watching TV, and then she got an e-mail, and then she went to go lock the door, and he was in the hallway and they made eye contact.

And then she went back in the room and she told us, "Go hide." And then we went to go hide behind my teacher's desk and behind the backpacks, and then he shot the little window and then he went to the other classroom. And then he went -- there's a door between our classrooms and he went to there and shot my teacher and told my teacher good night and shot her in the head. And then he shot some of my classmates and the whiteboard.

When I went to the backpacks, he shot my friend that was next to me, and I thought he was going to come back to the room, so I grabbed blood and I put it all over me.

QUESTION: Do you feel safe at school?

(MIA CERILLO nods "no.")

QUESTION: Why not?

CERILLO: Because, I don't want it to happen again.

QUESTION: Do you think it is going to happen again?

DR. ROY GUERRERO, UVALDE PEDIATRICIAN: What I did find was something no prayer will ever relieve. Two children whose bodies had been pulverized by bullets fired at them decapitated, whose flesh had been ripped apart that the only clue to their identities was a blood- spattered cartoon clothes still clinging to them, clinging for life and finding none.

ZENETA EVERHART, MOTHER OF BUFFALO SHOOTING VICTIM: To the lawmakers who feel that we do not need stricter gun laws. Let me paint a picture for you.

My son, Zaire, has a hole in the right side of his neck, two on his back and another on his left leg caused by an exploding bullet from an AR-15. As I clean his wounds, I can feel pieces of that bullet in his back. Shrapnel will be left inside of his body for the rest of his life.

Now, I want you to picture that exact scenario for one of your children. This should not be your story or mine.

KIMBERLY RUBIO, DAUGHTER, LEXI, KILLED IN ROBB ELEMENTARY SCHOOL SHOOTING: Somewhere out there, there is a mom listening to our testimony, thinking I can't even imagine their pain not knowing that our reality will one day be hers unless we act now.

GUERRERO: I chose to be a pediatrician. I chose to take care of children. Keeping them safe from preventable diseases I can do, keeping them safe from bacteria and brittle bones, I can do, but making sure our children are safe from guns, that's the job of our politicians and leaders.

In this case, you are the doctors and our country is a patient. We are lying on the operating table riddled with bullets like the children of Robb Elementary and so many other schools. We are bleeding out and you are not there.

My oath as a doctor means that I signed up to save lives. I do my job. And I guess it turns out that I am here to plead, to beg to please, please do yours.


BERMAN: That was Dr. Roy Guerrero earlier today and he joins us now.

Dr. Guerrero, your testimony was incredibly powerful. It was important and it must have been difficult for you. What was going through your mind today in those moments?

GUERRERO: I think the biggest thing that was going through my mind was deciding how much of the truth I wanted to expose and to say, but I felt it was important because only by painting that visual image could you actually get people to understand the gravity of what happened to our community, and to understand how much my community is suffering, and how much we are just completely devastated and still hurting two weeks after this happened.


BERMAN: How much of the truth to share you say, what is the truth?

GUERRERO: That these weapons of war cause wounds that are war wounds and things you see on movies, things that no pediatrician, much less any doctor is ever ready to see. We were forced into this situation by someone that was out to murder children and the wounds were exactly as I described.

BERMAN: You concluded your testimony by pleading with the politicians and leaders to do their jobs. Now, I know physicians aren't political figures, but they're concerned about the welfare of their patients, you know, what would you like to see happen?

GUERRERO: At the very least, I don't like to use the word gun control or gun reform, just implementing safety, safety that these guns can't get in the hands of people that shouldn't have them that. You know, these people should have background checks, especially if they suffer from mental illness or any other kind of emotional trauma or problems.

You get diagnoses run on you whenever you're trying to buy life insurance. So why not whenever you're trying to buy any type of gun? I think that's a start and I think it least knowing that the person that is going to buy or purchase these the these weapons doesn't have some kind of mental issue that could that could cause them to perform any more of these horrendous acts would be a good place to start.

BERMAN: You spoke about seeing Miah Cerillo at the hospital the day of the shooting, she bravely gave her testimony at this hearing today. You've known her since she was a baby. Can you just tell us about that moment that you saw her and her parents shortly after the shooting?

GUERRERO: Yea, so as I was called to the hospital, as I noted in my testimony today, Miah was one of the first of my patients that I saw as I walked into the ER. She was bleeding. She was obviously in shock and crying and she had a bleeding shoulder and you could tell what were shrapnel wounds all over her body and she had blood everywhere.

And her first question is, "Have you seen my mom?" And like I said, I've known Miah since she was probably a couple of months old. And so I immediately told her, "Yes, I think I just saw your mom -- your mom outside as I walked in."

And so as I walked out, I did locate Miah's parents and let them know that she was okay. But it was horrifying to see a child that's basically like yours, because you've known them for so long be in that situation and, and have these kinds of injuries.

BERMAN: So you say you'll never forget what you saw that day. You know, you speak about the mother's cries that you'll never get out of your head and the fact that the only clue to the identities of the children was the blood-spattered cartoon clothes they were wearing.

Do you think it's possible for people across the country to fully grasp the horror of what you saw?

GUERRERO: No, I think unless you -- you lived it, and you felt it and you still feel it. It is like -- it is like the community does today and how Uvalde is mourning still, at this point, you'll never truly know or feel what we felt. But at least if I can -- can at least paint a mental picture of these horrendous acts that shouldn't be happening. I think that's a start.

Because like I said, no one should -- should ever experience this.

BERMAN: And it's back to that initial point you made, how much of the truth you want to share with people. What do people need to know? What do people need to know about the sights that you saw? And again, I know it's hard for people to hear, but you obviously think it's important that they do?

GUERRERO: Yes. I just think that people need to know that these type of guns, assault weapons, AR-15s have no place and in our society, merely because of the type of injuries and wounds that they -- that they cause.

And, as you mentioned, you know, with these types of scenarios and with the things that we saw that day. I'm not going to repeat what the injuries were. The reports are out there, everyone has read it, everyone has seen my testimony, that is something that no family or no community should ever re-live ever again.

BERMAN: And I know you're a pediatrician, you treat patients and you've probably treated all kinds of things in your life. But I know you've also never seen anything like this or --

GUERRERO: No. BERMAN: How are you doing? How was your community doing tonight?


GUERRERO: We're struggling. We're broken. Uvalde will never be the same.

I think, speaking for myself, you know, it is two weeks from the tragedy and here I am speaking to you. Here I am at the U.S. Capitol when, you know, a month ago I was treating the normal ailments of a pediatrician's normal daily task. I never thought that I would be sitting here with you right now.

I really think I really haven't dealt with the full impact of what's happened to me, what's happened to my community, which is today we actually had a meeting on Capitol Hill with some policymakers just speaking of the counseling and the psychology help we're going to need for the community, the parents, aunts, uncles, friends, even myself weeks, to months, to years from now, after this tragedy.

BERMAN: Dr. Roy Guerrero, I know the community is grateful for the work you're doing. Thank you for being with us tonight.

GUERRERO: Thank you so much.

BERMAN: Texas Senator John Cornyn, the lead Republican negotiator told CNN tonight that he managed to see some of the House testimony, went about the demand by some witnesses to do more than what's being proposed in the Senate talks.

Senator Cornyn said he understands their concerns, says his goal is saving lives, but added nobody knows exactly what we're going to do including me.

For more on what's happening on the Senate in the House side, we are joined tonight by CNN's Lauren Fox.

Lauren, what's the latest on the gun safety measures being voted on in the House? And what's the outlook for action in the Senate?

LAUREN FOX, CNN POLITICS U.S. CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, John, just moments ago, the House passing their own gun legislation, the Protecting Our Kids Act, which includes several provisions that are not going to be included in those Senate negotiations.

One of them that got several Republican votes was an increase in the age at which you could buy an AR-15 from the age of 18 to 21. They voted individually on all of these measures before voting on the overall package and 10 Republicans voted on that measure when it came to the House floor.

There is also legislation included in this broader package in the House that would limit the size of high capacity magazines, another provision that is not going to be part of the Senate negotiations, but like you said, the House making it very clear where they stand, of course, controlled by Democrats versus the Senate, where those bipartisan talks are going more slowly and more deliberately, perhaps, but where it is certainly going to be much harder to get the sweeping kinds of reforms that you had parents begging, pleading with lawmakers to pass today in that oversight hearing.

BERMAN: I mentioned Senator Cornyn said he saw some of the clips of the testimony today. Is it clear whether the testimony in the House had much of an impact on the Senate negotiations?

FOX: Well, I was talking to several members about whether they actually watched pieces of that hearing, whether they saw clips. It was interesting, the juxtaposition Senator Cornyn said he did see some clips.

Senator Ted Cruz said he had been in Committee hearings all day and had not seen them. They of course, both represent the State of Texas.

Right now, it doesn't seem given what Cornyn said about he doesn't even know what's going to be in the Senate package that this has had an impact in how they are negotiating.

Again, the things that the parents are asking for are not going to be included in that broader Senate package. Instead, the senators are looking at much more narrow provisions, things like including juvenile records in the background checks of people who go and try to buy an AR-15 if they're between the ages of 18 and 21. They're also looking at about $7 billion for mental health funding, but those items are just not going to reach as far as something like banning assault weapons or banning the kinds of weapons that did the kind of damage to children that the pediatrician was just talking about -- John.

BERMAN: Lauren Fox, thank you very much.

One other related item, Attorney General Merrick Garland announced today that the Justice Department will review the actions law enforcement took and did not take at Robb Elementary. Uvalde's Mayor requested the probe.

So just last night, we reported a new bulletin from the Homeland Security Department, it warned of a possible uptick in violence fueled by among other things, the upcoming Supreme Court ruling on abortion.

Well, not long after we left you, in the early hours of the morning, the possible became the actual and now a man is in custody charged with trying to murder a Justice on the U.S. Supreme Court.

CNN's Jessica Schneider joins us with all we know about the alleged attempt on Brett Kavanaugh.

Jessica, what are authorities saying about what happened? Who this would be assassin is? What he was planning to do and his motivation?


So this is a 26-year-old man from Simi Valley, California. He is now in Federal custody, but authorities say he traveled across the country with the expressed intent to break into a Supreme Court Justice's home and kill him.

And now we know that the intended target was Justice Brett Kavanaugh.

So this all unfolded outside the Justice's home just outside of D.C., in Maryland overnight. Authorities say the suspects showed up. He was dressed all in black. He was carrying a suitcase and a backpack.


Those were filled with weapons and ammunition. John, it included a Glock 17 pistol with two magazines, ammunition, also zip ties, a hammer, even a crowbar.

Now, officials say that shortly thereafter, when he got out of the cab, he actually called 9-1-1 on himself and he told the dispatcher that he was suicidal, that he also had a gun. That's when police moved in. They arrested him.

And then when FBI agents questioned him, that 26-year-old said that he had numerous reasons for being there. He said he was upset about the leaked draft of that Roe v. Wade opinion that has not been officially released yet. Also, said he was angered about the mass shooting and Uvalde and then said that he was concerned that Justice Brett Kavanaugh would cast a vote to strike down a New York gun law. We are also still waiting on that opinion.

And John, perhaps most strikingly, is that the suspect allegedly told authorities that he bought the pistol and the ammunition with the express intent to kill traveling cross country in what was this plot -- John.

BERMAN: Do we know if Justice Kavanaugh was home at the time of the incident or if security alerted his family?

SCHNEIDER: So here's the thing. The Supreme Court has been very tight-lipped about the whereabouts of any of the Justices in the past few weeks since that leak. They haven't even been telling us about the Supreme Court Justices' public appearances. So we don't know if justice Kavanaugh was home, but we know he lives there with his wife, his two young daughters.

Notably though, John, a few weeks ago, the Attorney General said that U.S. Marshals would provide around the clock security for the Justices and their families. So the Marshals were there outside his home, they also saw the suspect arrive and sort of helps thwart this plot.

BERMAN: All right, Jessica Schneider, stick around for a second. I want to bring in CNN chief legal analyst, Jeffrey Toobin.

Jeffrey, look, we saw the Homeland Security warning. Still, though, I mean, how surprising is this for you to see?

JEFFREY TOOBIN, CNN CHIEF LEGAL ANALYST: Well, unfortunately, it's not that surprising because of the, you know, incredibly tense and violent atmosphere that we see in so many -- so much now. I mean, you know, look at the Supreme Court, the Supreme Court is

surrounded by this enormous ugly fence because for security reasons, and this is just an incredibly scary, awful story about the threat to Justice Kavanaugh. I mean, this guy had real guns with him.

And, you know, maybe he was mentally ill, maybe he wasn't. We don't know all the circumstances. But the fact is, this was a real threat, it appears. And we can only be fortunate that it didn't get any -- it didn't get any farther than it did.

BERMAN: Is there any historical precedent for this, Jeffrey, that a security bulletin is issued around a pending Supreme Court decision?

TOOBIN: Well, certainly not in the modern era of the Supreme Court. You know, but not too long ago, Supreme Court Justices traveled the world like members of Congress, with very little or no security at all. I mean, they have always been public figures, but they were not the people subject to threats, those days are over, and they are getting more over all the time. The security is ramping up.

Obviously, the Bush v. Gore -- the Roe v. Wade case, the case that may overturn abortion rights in America is something that has raised sensitivity. And, you know, and provoked a great deal of anger. So, you know, unfortunately, the threat level is probably only going to rise as we get closer to that decision probably by the end of June.

BERMAN: Jessica, what does the Federal case look like against this individual? What kind of prison time could it be facing?

SCHNEIDER: This is serious. This is a serious charge. It is attempted murder of a U.S. Judge and it carries up to 20 years in prison. We saw the suspect. He was in Court today, in Federal Court in Maryland before a Magistrate Judge. He was remanded, so he will be locked up until his next court date, which is later in June.

But this is a very serious charge. I mean, attempted murder of a U.S. Judge, 20 years.

BERMAN: A serious charge for what could have been a very serious incident. Jessica Schneider, Jeffrey Toobin, thanks to you both.

Next, one of the police heroes of January 6 and what he would like to see from the televised hearings, which begin tomorrow.

Also, new audio of the top House Republican on January 11th endorsing the very same goals of the Select Committee and investigation that he now opposes.

Later, new details in the strange disappearance of Kaitlin Armstrong who vanished shortly after police issued a warrant for her arrest and the killing of pro cyclist Anna Moriah Wilson were Federal investigators say she was spotted.


[20:23:46] BERMAN: With the televised House January 6 hearings now less than a

day away. There is new audio tonight of one of the Republican leaders who is refusing to cooperate with the investigation. It was just released by reporters Alex Burns and Jonathan Martin in connection with their new book, "This Will Not Pass."

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy talking to members on January 11th, just days after the attack on the Capitol, essentially agreeing with everything that Committee he now opposes, says it stands for.


REP. KEVIN MCCARTHY (R-CA): We cannot just sweep this under the rug. We need to know why it happened who did it, and people need to be held accountable for it and I'm committed to make sure that it happens.


BERMAN: So just days after he said that, he went to Mar-a-Lago, made nice with the former President and is now leading the opposition to everything pretty much he said he was for back on January 11th.

Also in these new tapes, audio of a Republican Congressman from Indiana on January 5th, telling colleagues he doesn't like the fact that he is about to vote to overturn election results, but he is doing it anyway because his constituents are demanding it.


REP. LARRY BUSCHON (R-IN): The reality is, is this as a political vote for many of us.

I'm going to vote my district. My district wants me to object to the states that get bicameral reject -- objections and that's how I'm going to vote. Do I like it? No.



BERMAN: Joining us now, CNN law enforcement analyst, Michael Fanone. He was beaten, Tasered, and suffered traumatic brain injury and later a heart attack defending the Capitol from the very mob that the election Big Lie incited.

Officer Fanone, thank you so much for being with us. You hear those comments from Republican lawmakers before and after the insurrection, particularly Kevin McCarthy, who is now against the Select Committee. So when you hear that now, how does it make you feel?

MICHAEL FANONE, CNN LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: Well, I mean, I agreed with Kevin McCarthy that, you know, uttered those words. I think it was what on January 11th?

Obviously, you know, I've talked about it many times, he's reversed course. And made the events of that day purely political. You know, he is looking for -- looking at his own political future, the future of his party. Those are the things that appear to be most important to Kevin McCarthy.

BERMAN: I just want to play a little bit more of what was said the day before the attack, and this time it's by Republican Congresswoman Debbie Lesko of Arizona. Listen to this.


REP. DEBBIE LESKO (R-AZ): I also ask leadership to come up with a safety plan for members. I'm actually very concerned about this, because we have, who knows how many hundreds of thousands of people coming here. We have Antifa.

We also have, quite honestly, Trump supporters who actually believe that we are going to overturn the election, and when that doesn't happen, most likely will not happen, they are going to go nuts.


BERMAN: This is January 5th, Debbie Lesko, saying there will be Trump supporters there who are going to go nuts. So, hearing that now, having gone through everything you did, what do you think?

FANONE: Yes, I just -- I don't understand it to be totally honest with you. I don't know what to think. You know, this was obviously an incredibly violent day. Many officers were injured. People lost their lives, including a police officer. And, you know, that aside, it was the most -- to me, at least the most embarrassing moment, in my lifetime for our country on the national and also on the international stage.

I mean, we've become, you know, a parody of ourselves or the laughingstock, you know, America that touts the peaceful transition of power and lectures other countries. You know, look what we've become.

BERMAN: So these hearings begin tomorrow night in primetime, what are the outstanding questions that you have that need to be answered? What are the blanks do you want to have filled in?

FANONE: I have the same questions that I had when I testified last year. I want to know that if there were elected members of our government or government officials who participated in an overt effort to overturn the 2020 election, I want to know about our elected members, and their subordinates, internal conversations, and whether or not they reflect their public rhetoric.

I want to know if their subordinates coordinated with the individuals who carried out the violent attack, or if elected members for that matter coordinated with these individuals, these groups, Three Percenters, the Proud Boys, et cetera. I also want some answers with regards to the physical security of the Capitol.

Now, I'm not a police officer anymore. I know I'm not privy to certain types of information, but I think the U.S. Capitol Police owes it not only to their own officers, but also to the other agencies that responded that day to assist.

There should be some assurances that steps have been taken to assure that the events of that day won't happen again, you know, whether it's physical security, training, preparation, regardless, and there were some catastrophic failures in preparation in leadership within the United States Capitol Police, and as far as I know, the only person that lost their job was Chief Sund.

I think that's pretty outrageous, if you ask me.

BERMAN: Are you worried about possible misinformation that will be floated in the coming weeks around the hearing? I mean, just tonight Congressman Troy Nehls who House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy originally wanted on the Committee, told our Melanie Zanona that quote, "I think the Capitol Police didn't have the National Guard here because maybe they just wanted it to happen."


FALONE: Yes, I mean, I try not to speak specifically to conspiracy theories. I mean, unfortunately, we've got too many members of the, you know, tinfoil hat brigade that have infiltrated our government. You know, if the Congressman has evidence of that, why hasn't he brought that forward? You know, it's that type of dangerous rhetoric, you know, insinuating things like that with no evidence that got us here in the first place.

BERMAN: Michael Falone, I do appreciate your time and I thank you so much for being with us.

FALONE: Thank you.

BERMAN: Up next, the message sent to Democrats nationwide after California voters went to the polls. The results in some key races including the Los Angeles mayoral race, are getting a lot of attention. We're going to talk it over with Democratic strategist, James Carville.


BERMAN: A powerful message for Democrats nationwide when you look at some of the primary results in California, one of the most liberal states and home to two of the most liberal cities in the country. Voters sent a message address crime and homelessness. Voters recalled San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudin by 20-point margin, not much support for his progressive policies on crime and prison reform and the city that his face to play good burglary and public disorder.


And in the Los Angeles mayoral race, billionaire businessman and Republican turned Democrat Rick Caruso, who promises a tough on crime approach got enough support to force November runoff against longtime Democratic Congresswoman Karen Bass.

Joining us now for his take on the Democratic results is strategist James Carville, co-host of the Politics War Room podcast. James, thank you for being with us. How much of a wake up call should this be for national Democrats?

JAMES CARVILLE, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: Well, Democratic voters have seized control of their party. The people of San Francisco won last night, the faculty at Berkeley, the University of California at Berkeley lost. And, you know, this is not unusual. They lost in Seattle, Minneapolis, Buffalo, Cleveland, New Orleans, New York City.

I mean, hopefully that to a lot of people in a party and a lot of people have covered a party and influences understand that the Democrats around the country live in this country and they want to save country and they want people to pay attention to them. The people that do the work and walk the streets and ride mass transit and go to the hospitals and send their kids to school that that's who counts in this country, not a bunch of snobby self righteous elites.

BERMAN: Back in May of last year, we're talking about a year ago, you wrote an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal, you warned Democrats that they need to face crime head on and you concluded with the quote, Democrats don't pivot on crime on the issue, or the issue will own you. Is crime owning Democrats right now?

CARVILLE: Well, it's only a certain sliver of the Democratic Party and, you know, a blind acorn, find a squirrel every now and then a glove back on that piece. And, you know, this blind squirrel found an acorn, but I could feel it. And you could see it coming and we had a very successful. You know, President Biden and President Clinton in 1994 authored and passed an assault weapons ban. It was in place for 10 years. And then they repealed it. We had 400,000 assault weapons in this country in 1994. We now have 20 million.

The crime, violent crime rate in United States dropped precipitously between 1994 and 2019. It was only in the last year of President Trump that the crime rate skyrocketed. And I just don't understand why Democrats some Democrats run away from this issue because the Democratic voters are not running away from this issue, because they feel it. I feel it here in New Orleans, I talk to people on the street and feel it. And this should be our issue. It really should.

BERMAN: How much of the struggle do you trace back to the perception fair or unfair, that your party embrace the defund the police mantra (ph)? I know it wasn't the leaders. I know, it's not Joe Biden, he from the beginning has been against it. But how much of a problem has that been for the party?

CARVILLE: It's been a terrible problem and defund the police is what we call on our businesses sticky. OK. I think it's the economy stupid. That's sticky. I think it's probably sticky in a good way. But it's sticky. And defund the police is sticky in a bad way. And you had a lot of a lot of the commentariat was saying this is the new move in America. This is this, this is that, of course they put it on the ballot in Minneapolis, and it went down terribly. And it particularly went down in more marginal neighborhoods, because people feel this. And it's not too much for the American taxpaying, American voter to ask for humane effective policing, the two are not exclusionary, and until Democrats understand that we're going to continue to have the setback.

Actually Democrats have a much, much better record on crime than Republicans do. And for some reason, we seem to be afraid to run out of it. But there is no reason to do that. And you look at the sickening stuff with these assault weapons, you can win without a great Democratic successes ever.

BERMAN: James Carville, we do appreciate your time tonight. Thanks so much for joining us.

CARVILLE: Well, thank you, John. You bet. Appreciate it.

BERMAN: Up next, as Russia continues to advance in eastern Ukraine, we'll take you to the Ukrainian frontlines where troops say powerful American weaponry is giving them an edge against Russian forces.



BERMAN: A CNN exclusive now, a sophisticated American weapons being supplied to Ukraine. We've been hearing about them for weeks now as each new shipment is announced. Now for the first time we see them in action on the frontlines.

More from CNN's Matthew Chance.


MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): These are just some of the powerful American guns now on the Ukrainian frontlines meant to make a critical difference in the war with Russia. Of course, they might be targeted at any moment. Media access to them is highly sensitive and rare.

(on-camera): Right, well, we've been taken here, very close to the frontlines in southern Ukraine where we're being shown these U.S. provided long range artillery systems, it's an M777. According to Ukrainian military officials that we've spoken to, the U.S. has so far supplied approximately 90 of these weapons, and many of them are already being used on the frontline including in this area here in the south of Ukraine, pounding Russian positions.

(voice-over): We were only shown a training exercise, but Ukrainian military officials say these are exclusive images of the same weapons in action just this week, firing on Russian forces more than 20 miles away. Including on this grad multiple rocket launcher, they say had been targeting civilian areas. Ukrainian aerial footage shows the grad being destroyed. Its ammunition exploding after a direct hit.

Ukrainian artillery troops say their guns are now giving them an edge and their Russian counterparts are feeling the pain.

IVAN SUROV, UKRAINIAN SENIOR LIEUTENANT (through translation): Yes, they definitely noticed as we became faster and more precise. They are not able to keep up with us as their operating old Soviet guns which are heavier, less precise, slower and difficult to use. These guns are objectively the best in the world and when we started using them our efficiency rose tremendously.


CHANCE (on-camera): It's giving the Ukrainian military an advantage, they say, on the battlefield, because these weapons are much lighter, much more accurate than they've used before, much more mobile as well. And it's giving them the edge, they say to try and help them push back Russian forces all along this region. But of course, the complaint, if they're, if you can call it a complaint is that they want more of this, they want more weapons like this. And they want even longer range rocket systems, which have already been promised, of course by the United States to push back the Russians even further.

(voice-over): And Ukrainian authorities are likely to need more guns still, to hold them back. With no end to this conflict, the demand for U.S. weapons may be endless, too.


BERMAN: That's a perspective we just haven't seen. And Matthew joins me now from Kryvri Rih in southern Ukraine. Matthew, what is Ukrainian leadership saying about these weapons from the U.S.?

CHANCE: Well, first of all, John, they're saying that they're very grateful indeed for them because they're making a difference on the battlefield. But they're saying they want more of them. And they want more frequent deliveries because the supplies of them are becoming depleted so they can use these weapons to push Russian forces out of Ukrainian cities and help save Ukrainian lives and defend the country. John.

BERMAN: What's President Zelenskyy been saying about the latest fighting in the east, particularly in the city of Severodonetsk?

CHANCE: Well, it's very grave. He's saying the situation is very difficult. The battle is very ferocious, and he's also making the point that the fate of Donbass that area in eastern Ukraine, which Russia says as a military priority for it to conquer, the fate of Donbass is being decided in this battle. This, as Russian forces, you know, are poised to take over essentially the last remaining big city in the Luhansk region of Donbass, which is still nominee at least at this stage, still under Ukrainian government control.

BERMAN: That would be a significant development there. Matthew Chance, terrific reporting. Thank you very much.

Coming up, new details in the search for the woman suspected of killing an elite cyclist and what investigators believed was a deadly act of romantic jealousy. "360's" Randi Kaye has the latest, next.


[20:51:40] BERMAN: The saga continues tonight in a possible love triangle turn murder case. The search for Kaitlyn Armstrong, the woman accused of killing pro-cyclist Anna Moriah Wilson is ongoing. Armstrong vanished weeks ago and tonight we have new details on where she was last seen.

Our Randi Kaye has the story.


BRANDON FILLA, DEPUTY U.S. MARSHAL: If Kaitlyn is out there watching or anyone that is helping her, you know, we asked you to come forward.

RANDI KAYE, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): A message from the U.S. marshals to Kaitlyn Marie Armstrong, who investigators say fled Austin, Texas after gunning down Anna Moriah Wilson, a 25-year- old pro cyclist on May 11th. Take a good look at the security camera images from May 14th, just a few days after the murder. Federal investigators say that's Armstrong at the airport in Austin, Texas, just before flying to New York City's LaGuardia Airport. And now they say someone dropped her off at Newark Airport in New Jersey four days later on May 18th.

As of now investigators say there is no evidence she took an outbound flight from Newark, or at least not in her real name. All of this puts Kaitlin Armstrong hundreds of miles away from the crime scene and investigators are stumped.

FILLA: We've kind of lost the track. We lost the footprint in the sand when she landed there at LaGuardia Airport.

KAYE (voice-over): Armstrong's father told ABC his daughter is innocent.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I know that she did not do this. There are a lot of unanswered questions.

KAYE (voice-over): Authorities believe Armstrong has the answers to those questions. The motive for the killing may be a jealous rage. The affidavit says both women had been in a romantic relationship with the same man, another professional cyclist named Colin Strickland. And anonymous tip to police said Armstrong made prior statements expressing a desire to kill Wilson. On the day of her murder, the affidavit says Wilson and Strickland spent the afternoon swimming together then had dinner. After that Strickland told investigators he dropped Wilson off at her friend's home and did not go inside. Later that night, Wilson's friend returned home to find her bleeding and unconscious in the bathroom. Per the affidavit she suffered from multiple gunshot wounds.

Investigators zeroed in on Armstrong as a suspect after obtaining video surveillance that shows an SUV similar to Armstrong's near the crime scene just one minute after Wilson went inside. That's according to the police affidavit, which also says ballistic evidence recovered at the scene is similar to bullets test fired from a six-hour handgun belonging to Armstrong. FILLA: And we'd like to safely bring you into custody so that, you know, you have your day in court and you'll be able to tell your side of the story.

KAYE (voice-over): But Armstrong had her chance to tell her side of the story once already. Before skipping town, investigators picked her up on an outstanding arrest warrant unrelated to this case, and questioned her about why her vehicle was captured on security camera footage near the murder scene. At the time, they didn't have probable cause to hold Armstrong and let her go. Even after they say she offered no explanation for her vehicles whereabouts.

FILLA: If she thought or she knew she was going to be wanted for this, she probably had a five day headstart.


BERMAN: And Randi joins me now from Dallas. Randi, I know you spoke with the U.S. Marshal Service today. What else were they able to share with you?

KAYE: John, I spoke with Deputy U.S. Marshal Brandon Filla and he told me that they are still trying to figure out who dropped Kaitlin Armstrong at Newark Airport. He said that this was not some sort of mass transit dropped, this was a private vehicle, so they're still trying to figure that out.


And of course they've searched the database nobody with her name shows up in any sort of outbound flight from Newark, so they're trying to figure out if possibly, she was traveling using a fake ID or maybe just using the airport to throw investigators off her trail and possibly left the airport on foot or by some other means. They are poring over all the security camera video both inside and outside the airport trying to see if maybe they can spot her possibly even wearing a disguise at the airport, John.

Right now, the reward is up to $5,000. They received more than 70 tips, but still no confirmed sightings of Kaitlin Armstrong, John.

BERMAN: Got that video. Randi Kaye, thank you very much.

Next, putting tomorrow's first session of televise January 6 hearings in perspective.


BERMAN: Anyone old enough to remember the Iran Contra hearings in the late 1980s or watched the Watergate hearings? Anyone familiar with either of these knows that these rare proceedings often produce surprises and drama. And more often than not a better approximation of the truth of what really happened than anyone might have expected.

[21:00:11] Will that be the case with the January 6 hearings which get underway tomorrow night? It will certainly be something to watch for. CNN special coverage begins tomorrow night at 7:00 Eastern time, right here on CNN.

The news continues. So let's head over to Laura Coates in "CNN TONIGHT."