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The Lead with Jake Tapper
Nashville PD: Female Shooter Kills 3 Children, 3 Adults At School; Mass Protests Over Israel's Proposed Judicial Overhau; Putin: Russia To Station Tactical Nuclear Weapons In Belarus; Trump Ratchets Up Extreme Rhetoric Against Manhattan D.A.; At Least 22 Dead As Tornadoes Leave Path Of Destruction In South; Philadelphia Officials' Mixed Messaging Sparks Rush Of Bottled Water. Aired 4-5p ET
Aired March 27, 2023 - 16:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
BIANNA GOLODRYGA, CNN HOST: Manu Raju, another mass shooting another shooting at a school in America, another tragic day in America.
Our coverage of the school shooting in Nashville will continue.
THE LEAD starts right now.
PAMELA BROWN, CNN HOST: Three children and three adult victims killed at a school in Nashville, Tennessee.
THE LEAD starts right now.
A private Christian school becomes a crime scene and mass shooting number 129 in the U.S. just this year. What we're learning about the 28-year-old woman police say was responsible.
And uproar in Israel. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu responds to protest that brought his country to a standstill, postponing a major vote to overhaul the judicial system.
Plus, troubled waters. Bottled water hard to come by in Philadelphia, a major American city that can't guarantee how long water will be safe to drink.
BROWN: Welcome to THE LEAD. I'm Pamela Brown, in for Jake Tapper.
And we start with our national lead, with another devastating school shooting. Three students and three adult victims, they are dead today after a woman opened fire at the school, according to police. She is now dead.
Nashville police are scheduled to give another update on this tragic shooting this hour. We're going to bring that to you live. As soon as it happens, but students there at the covenant school are preschool through sixth grade, according to its website. Video shows staff as you see right here, ushering some of them outside to safety, single file, holding hands. Police say the female shooter was 28 years old and may have attended
the school herself at some point. The 1st 911 call came in at 10:13 this morning. Fourteen minutes later, the suspect was dead after two officers engaged her, police say.
First Lady Jill Biden and President Biden reacted to the shooting just a short while ago.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JILL BIDEN, U.S. FIRST LADY: We just learned about another shooting in Tennessee, a school shooting. And I am truly without words. And our children deserve better. And we stand all of us. We stand with Nashville in prayer.
JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We do know that, as of now there are a number of people who are not did not make it, including children. It's heartbreaking family's worst nightmare. We have to do more to stop gun violence. It's ripping our communities apart.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BROWN: And we start our coverage today with CNN's Dianne Gallagher.
Dianne, what are you hearing from investigators?
DIANNE GALLAGHER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Right now, Pamela, investigators are trying to determine exactly what happened. The sequence of events that led to this tragedy and why -- why this 28-year-old woman who they say lives in the Nashville area would have gone and killed students, killed children, killed teachers at this school.
According to police, three children were killed and three staff members were killed at the covenant school, about 200 students total who attend this private Christian school as you mentioned from preschool to sixth grade. They serve there. They got that first call at 10:13 a.m., and they say that by 10:26 a.m., two police officers had reached the upper level and, in their words engaged with the suspect killing her.
Now, according to police, they are trying to determine how that 28- year-old woman got inside the school. They say she entered through a side door. But according to the chief of police, all of the doors were locked.
She then made her way up to what they call an upper level of the school, which again is inside of a church area. And they say that the shooting itself happened in what they describe as a lobby area.
Now there was a car on scene that the police chief says helped lead them to identifying the suspect who they have not named at this point, but do say she's a 28 year old white woman from the Nashville area who may have at one point been a student at the school. They say that she was armed with two assault style rifles and a handgun.
Pamela, again, three students killed, three staff members killed. They say there were no additional injuries of anybody. But there is this just heartbreaking video of children being had no hand in hand exiting out of this. These are little kids here, and they are still working to determine. They say there was video of the school that the police are viewing that to see how this happened.
They commended the work of the officers and of the students themselves, who unfortunately, even at their young age knew what to do in a situation like this, Pamela.
BROWN: It is just beyond heartbreaking. Their lives changed forever as today and three innocent children lost their lives, three adults at that school.
What more do we know about the identity of the victims and their ages?
GALLAGHER: So it was very sadly poignant moment. The chief of police said that they had identified all of those who were killed and made contact with their families. But he didn't want to release their names just yet, and was not going to release their ages either.
And look, Pamela, that's likely because these are probably very young children. This is absolutely traumatic. You could tell for the officers for the students for the teachers. There was a daughter of one of the teachers who spoke with one of our local affiliates in the national area, and she said that she texted with her mother during this, and her mother was locked inside of her classroom with her students that she was scared.
She wanted to tell her family that she loved them, that she could hear the shooting and she felt like at one point someone was trying to get inside of her classroom. And unfortunately, that sounds so familiar because we've heard this story time and time again all across the country. The police in Nashville did credit the fact that they have sadly have experience with this and they were able to respond quickly to this and knew exactly what to do in this situation again, highlighting less than 15 minutes after receiving that first call, the shooter was dead.
BROWN: Dianne Gallagher, thank you.
I would not bring in Russ Pulley. He serves on the Nashville metropolitan council and represents the area where Covenant School is located.
Russ, you are right now at a church where students are being reunited with their families. Tell us about the emotion in that room right now.
RUSS PULLEY, NASHVILLE METROPOLITAN COUNCILMAN (via telephone): Well, the emotion downstairs because we have the children separated from the parents, throughout this process in order to orderly, ensure that the parents were properly united with their children. That's been an orderly and neat process, and it is now just about completed. The children were certainly huddled in their classrooms. And it was the atmosphere was much like you would see at a school if they were all together in the assembly upstairs where the parents were in the sanctuary, not so much as you could imagine.
I mean, people were obviously emotional, having had their children go through an experience like this. But the process is about complete now, and there's a few witnesses being interviewed. So, most if not all, the children have been reunited with their parents. We made it through this. Unfortunately, as we know there are other parents grieving.
BROWN: They are. Do you know if those parents have been notified? Those three parents, three sets of parents notified about their children having been killed in this mass shooting there at the school today?
PULLEY: Any information that I have is unconfirmed and had heard that they were notified and they were sent to the hospital. But again, that's unconfirmed information. So I wouldn't use me as your source.
PULLEY: I've been there at the scene pretty much all day. And you know, I've been with the kids and the families here, so information is not really flowing to me and confirmed nature.
BROWN: All right. Well, we'll be sure to follow up on that. Did you have a chance to speak with some of these kids? How are they holding up? What did they tell you?
PULLEY: Oh, I absolutely did. But I didn't talk to these kids from the standpoint of asking questions about when or what went on. I was interacting with the children as if I was showing up at school for a day, just trying to keep the mood light down there, and they made that very easy.
So, you know I'm not a therapist, but my suspicion is that will change in due time, but for now, they're reacting quite well.
BROWN: I'm just wondering. I mean, this is the 129th shooting mass shooting this year. There have been so many school shootings as well. What's it like for you? I mean, being on being a councilman there in Nashville? How do you look at this school shooting? What more needs to be done to prevent it?
I mean, are we just at a place in society where parents just have to basically think to themselves? Well, you know this -- this could be my child's school next.
PULLEY: Well, I'm in a bit of a unique position serving on the council because I left completed 36-year-long enforcement career before I got elected to council. So I've got experience in that field, and, you know, unfortunately, this is the world in which we live.
This school prepared for this with active shooter training for a reason. We don't like to think that this is ever going to happen to us. But experience has taught us that we need to be prepared because in this day and time, this is the reality of where we are. And it happened here, right?
BROWN: Right, it's a very sad, very sad reality. But I guess to follow up on what you said yes, they've been preparing for this. Police have been preparing for this. But should we just accept that reality? Should we tolerate that reality?
PULLEY: No, we shouldn't tolerate them reality any more than we tolerate people killing each other every day. We have a murder rate that's intolerable, and we have these experiences that are intolerable for the people who experience them in society in general.
So, sure, people in my position, we think and fight for ways to do things that are guiding principle. Principles bring us to in order to try to minimize this damage. But, you know, we're kind of left with the battles that we fight over what we think is appropriate and what we think it's thought, and we continue to educate ourselves.
But no, the answer your question is, it's not tolerable and we're just going to continue to do what we can to try to minimize this.
BROWN: All right. Metropolitan Nashville Councilman Russ Pulley, thank you so much for your time.
And we should note within the hour, we expect an update from police about this tragedy in Nashville. Earlier, they said the shooter had two assault style rifles and a handgun.
Ahead, the rarity of this being a female shooter and the new calls from President Biden to ban assault weapons. We'll be back.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We have to do more to protect our school, so they aren't turned into prisons. You know the shooter? In this situation reportedly had two assault weapons and a pistol, two AK-47. So I call on Congress again to pass my assault weapons ban. It's about time that we began to make some more progress.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BROWN: As you heard there, President Biden is calling on Congress to pass his assault weapons ban in the wake of another school shooting. Three students and three adults are dead after a female shooter entered the school and opened fire, according to police.
I'm now joined by former FBI official Katherine Schweit and former Secret Service agent Jonathan Wackrow.
Katherine, this shooter was a 28-year-old Nashville woman, police say. Police believe she was a student at the school at some point, which would have been over a decade ago, considering her age now. How significant is this connection for investigators? KATHERINE SCHWEIT, FORMER SENIOR FBI OFFICIAL: I think what it tells
us right away is, in some cases supporting, not surprising she's from the area. She knows she's familiar with the building. And that's not surprising, the fact that school shooters her age at 28, most of school shooters, more than two out of three school shooters are under the -- are teens or in their twenties. She fits right into that category.
Shooters who shoot at school shooting their neighborhoods. They shoot people they're familiar with, so I think there's a lot of things that it tells me and some of the things that I don't know, because it's a female is probably more likely that her grievance was with an individual in the school, whether it was a real or perceived grievance, and she planned to do this kind of destruction because of that grievance.
BROWN: Yeah, and I'll get you in a second, Jonathan, but to follow up on what you just said -- how often do the shooter's engaged in a shooting like this because as of a precipitating crisis, something that like triggers them, a grievance that happens around the time of the shooting?
SCHWEIT: Yeah, I think that's a great question because I think it's good to differentiate. There's always a grievance, whether it's a real or perceived grievance, but sometimes a stressing situation like you're fired at a job or you have a financial meltdown at home or you break up with your boyfriend or girlfriend, or your parents kick you out of the house -- those stressing situations can cause somebody to choose to act on a particular day. But this is a planned event, so the grievance has been there or the grievances have been there, and she planned this event for quite a while.
And, Jonathan, female mass shooters are extremely rare. What questions do you have right now about the suspect, who police say is a 28-year- old female from the area?
JONATHAN WACKROW, CNN LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: Yeah, well, listen, Pamela, you know, it's hard to answer the question of exactly what are the differences between a male and female mass shooter, and the reason being is just because we don't have a lot of female mass shooters. We just don't have a lot of statistical information to make the analysis.
But what we do know is that these violent attacks are perpetrated by people from different backgrounds with varying degrees of motivation, but unfortunately, the outcome is always the same. It's this loss of life. And while we're just starting to search for that motive right now, investigators are just starting this process.
We do know that the method of the attack was known. The police know how that occurred. But the question remains, why? Was this a deliberate act of terror or hate? Was she motivated by some sort of particular ideology?
And what I want to note from witnesses is, was she looking for somebody during the attack? Did she exhibit any type of target acquisition characteristics? In this case, the location of the shooting to me is more telling than the actual gender of the -- of the perpetrator, and the fact that this attack was launched at a school. Investigators will key in on that location, especially since we know that she is a student going back to my co panelists, the grievance issue.
Studies from the national threat assessment center have shown that nearly half the time in these, you know, mass shooting attacks. The perpetrator was motivated by some sort of personal grievance, and that could be a grievance recently or it could be a grievance that metastasized over time.
And the nexus back to that school, I think is going to lead us to a better understanding of the motivation.
BROWN: And as you point out from that grievance, you see loss of life. In this case, three children, three adult victims, and it is notable that they're -- they all die. The victims here in this case, Katherine, they died. There weren't any wounded.
It is a reminder that these weapons, they said that there's -- two assault style weapons guns being used that they are designed to kill.
SCHWEIT: Yeah, I think that that's a great point, Pamela, because, you know, you see how shook up the law enforcement officers are who are responding because these aren't a name and an age of these children and adults. These are high velocity rounds that go in and tear a body apart, and those officers had to see that.
And that's what they are coming back within their minds, and they'll never be able to unsee.
BROWN: So many people's lives changed forever because of this today, Katherine Schweit, Jonathan Wackrow, thank you.
And as we stand by to hear more from national police, we're following some other big stories for you this hour, including a major announcement from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in the wake of a ground swell of protests and the new pressure these demonstrations actually put on President Biden here in the U.S.
Plus, the bombshell witness, CNN just learned testified today in the grand jury there in New York linked to hush money payments and Donald Trump.
BROWN: Massive protests in Israel are showing no sign of slowing, even after a new deal to delay plans to overhaul the country's judicial system.
Today, tens of thousands of people turned out to protest the reform. Government workers nurses, airport employees, university professors all walked out on strike calling for the judicial changes to be stopped. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's proposed reform would change how judges are selected and give parliament the power to overturn Supreme Court decisions.
CNN's Nic Robertson joins us now from Jerusalem.
So, Nic, the latest massive wave of protests started after Netanyahu fired his defense minister who spoke out against the reforms.
NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: And the numbers just grew and grew and grew. And then, of course, that general strike the us speaking about grounding aircraft, closing government offices, shuttering shopping malls here in Israel.
But perhaps the other thing that it triggered here, which is significant is it also prompted some government ministers to call on their supporters to come out on the streets for the first time, and that had people worried, that minority right wing troublemaking elements in those pro-government protesters could clash with the anti- government protesters.
Interestingly, I spoke to some of those pro-government supporters after Prime Minister Netanyahu had made his televised speech after him essentially delayed making a decision on these judicial reforms. And some of them told me they were disappointed. They want him to press ahead with the reforms. They want it done now. They say, that's why they voted for him.
And I found this very interesting statement coming from people. It echoes what the government said from these pro government protesters saying that these vast anti-government, anti-judicial reform protests, they call them a minority and they say that they're essentially they're hijacking the electoral process here. They didn't win the election, but they're trying to hijack the things that the government is trying to do.
So despite the fact that prime minister is putting off a crunch date for talks over judicial reform, the passions that underlie it are still there, just as deep, just as big.
BROWN: Yeah, it doesn't seem to be enough to stop the protest, right?
ROBERTSON: The pro-government protesters left fairly quickly after Prime Minister Netanyahu spoke, or perhaps all gone within a couple of hours, but I think these huge numbers that we've seen trying to block the judicial reforms, they know the danger for what they're worried about, still exists, and I think we can expect to continue to come out, although a large general strike that had been called for Tuesday, that would have seen many of the country's nurses coming out on strike as well. That has been called off, but I think people shouldn't underestimate the tensions that still exist. All these -- all these big protests could come back out again, just large -- not just as large numbers.
BROWN: All right. Nic Robertson in Jerusalem, thank you. CNN's Jake Tapper sat down with Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu
earlier this year and asked him about his proposed judicial reforms and the connection to his own corruption trial. Take a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JAKE TAPPER, CNN HOST: What do you say to people who say you're only trying to override the judiciary because of yourself and your own interests?
BENJAMIN NETANYAHU, ISRAELI PRIME MINISTER: None of the reforms -- that's false. None of the reforms that we're talking about, these democratic reforms have anything to do with my trial. Israel has the most extreme judicial activism that's gone off the rails, and we're trying to bring it back to where just about all the democracies are, both in the selection of judges in the balance between the branches of government. It's gone haywire.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BROWN: And now, the protests come just one week after President Biden spoke with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on the phone, urging him to find a compromise on the judicial reforms.
But now amid the unrest, the administration is facing increasing calls to have a more forceful response.
CNN's Phil Mattingly joins us now from the White House.
So, Phil, a U.S. official says President Biden is likely to have another phone call with Netanyahu in the coming days. What do we know?
PHIL MATTINGLY, CNN CHIEF WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Yeah, Pamela, it's something that underscores what has been a decades-long relationship between the prime minister and the president. One that involves often we're told very blunt discussions about specific issues, and this was certainly at the center. Of that call, as you noted eight days ago, where the president raised issues about Israel as a democracy, made very clear that the U.S. in a very candid manner would like Israel to take a step back and more than anything else, pushed for the idea of trying to reach a compromise.
That was a push that was reiterated today after the decision to put a pause on things was laid out in public, the U.S. officials saying that they welcomed this step that was taken and urged Israel and its coalition government to work towards finding some type of compromise agreement, even though there's no clear sign that that's necessarily something that's going to happen right now. What you have seen from us officials from the president on down is a lot of caution in terms of how they address this.
They understand that this is a domestic political issue in Israel. They understand their longstanding relationship between the prime minister and the president. The dynamics of the U.S.-Israel relationship, but also the U.S. domestic issues here as well. And so that has brought in a lot of caution, but very clear concern as well, Pamela.
BROWN: And President Biden has yet to speak publicly on the matter. Do you think that could change? What are you hearing from your sources?
MATTINGLY: You know, I think that the U.S. officials when you talked to them over the course of the last several days have been very content to keep their conversations behind closed doors, understanding that anything spilling out to the public might become problematic. I've gotten since that's going to change anytime soon. Perhaps the president will weigh in if he's asked about it in a different setting over the course of the next couple of days.
But I think what you're hearing from us officials behind the scenes. Obviously, there is very real concern. They've amped up the level of that concern and very diplomatic speak kind of ways in the last several days.
But they want to ensure that there is space to reach some kind of different pathway here at least to pursue some kind of different pathway here. Keep in mind that long standing relationship between the prime minister and the president. At some point, that is going to lead to another call, and another urge by the president to go a different way, Pamela.
BROWN: All right. Phil Mattingly at the White House for us today, thank you.
Also in our world lead, allies are warning Russian President Vladimir Putin over his pledge to put tactical nuclear weapons in neighboring Belarus. So far, national security spokesman John Kirby says he has seen no evidence that Putin has actually moved the weapons but warned that if Putin does, it could become a potential flashpoint.
CNN's Matthew Chance is in Moscow, where Putin says he is taking this from the U.S. playbook.
MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The front lines are brutal. Even Ukrainian towns with little strategic value, locking both sides into a bloody stagnant standoff. One reason the Kremlin is again upping the ante.
It was on state television that President Putin dropped his nuclear bombshell. Tactical nuclear weapons will soon be deployed to neighboring Belarus he announced, that for decades has Russia stationed these powerful battlefield weapons outside its own borders.
VLADIMIR PUTIN, RUSSIAN PRESIDENT (through translator): The United States has done it for decades, they have placed their tactical nuclear weapons and their allied countries, and we had an agreement as allies do the same.
CHANCE: These are the Iskander missile systems capable of delivering a nuclear payload that Putin says are already deployed in Belarus. Silo for their nuclear warheads he says will be ready by July, prompting alarm and objections from Europe. But praise on the streets of the Russian capital where dissent from the Kremlin line is a risk.
I think NATO is to blame for all of this, says Tatiana. It is they who are marching towards us to our borders, she says.
The West thinks it can have its own way and do anything with us, says Vladimir. Now, it's time to demonstrate our capabilities to show we too mean business.
And there are airborne delivery systems, too. These are Russian warplanes flying sorties over Ukraine. But the Kremlin says Russian technicians have also converted 10 Belarusian aircraft to carry tactical nuclear weapons as well. It would be devastating and unstoppable.
But the U.S. officials say there's no reason to adjust America's nuclear posture, at least not yet.
JOHN KIRBY, NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL COORDINATOR FOR STRATEGIC COMMUNICATIONS: We've, in fact, seen no indication that he has any intention to use nuclear weapons period inside Ukraine.
But Putin has every intention of tightening his grip on Belarus, whose own autocratic leader is already propped up by the Kremlin strongman.
To avoid nuclear proliferation, Putin says, command and control of the tactical weapons will be kept with Moscow.
Belarus already a reluctant military ally, will now host even more Russian troops on its soil.
CHANCE (on camera): Well, Pam, it is unclear what the Belarusian leadership thinks about hosting these Russian tactical nuclear missiles on it -- on its soil, because they've been very tight-lipped about it. I spoke to them tonight, and they're not even issuing a statement at this stage.
In Ukraine, officials there saying there's going to be a lot of people against the inside Belarus and it could destabilize the country. European leaders are calling on Belarus to push back and to resist the Kremlin's embrace.
Pam, back to you.
BROWN: Matthew Chance in Moscow, thank you.
Turning to our politics lead now. A bombshell witness before the Manhattan grand jury investigating Donald Trump's alleged role in a scheme to pay hush money to adult film actress Stormy Daniels before the 2016 election. Former "National Enquirer" publisher David Pecker, a key player in the hush money payments scheme, met with the grand jury today and we've learned CNN's Paula Reid is live outside the New York courtroom for us.
So, Paula how does having Pecker as a witness add to our understanding of where this investigation stands and the timing of any potential indictment?
PAULA REID, CNN SENIOR LEGAL AFFAIRS CORRESPONDENT: Well, Pamela, this was an appearance that was shrouded in secrecy. Pecker entered the court and exited in a vehicle with tinted windows. He was clearly going out of his way not to be spotted by the world's media that is assembled here today because, as a witness, he could really be key here for prosecution.
He was involved in the hush money schemes to keep Stormy Daniels and at least one other woman quiet about their alleged affairs with former President Trump and we know he has previously met with prosecutors in this case, but his appearance today comes exactly one week after Attorney Robert Costello appeared before the grand jury at the request of defense attorneys. And during his appearance, he attacked the credibility of Michael Cohen and we knew from our reporting, the prosecutors have been mulling whether they need to bring another witness back to rebut Costello's testimony.
And Pecker is someone who could potentially do that and speak to how these hush money payments were put together.
BROWN: So what has been Trump's reaction to this New York grand jury investigation?
REID: Well, Pamela, over the past few days, the former president has been attacking the Manhattan district attorney during his campaign rally in Waco, Texas, and on Truth Social. He has threatened that there could potentially be violence if he is charged. He also posted a picture of himself with a baseball bat next to the D.A. and his own attorney, Trump's own attorney, Joe Tacopina, responded to this.
Let's take a listen to what he said.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOE TACOPINA, ATTORNEY FOR DONALD TRUMP: I'm not his social media consultant. I don't -- I think that was an ill-advised post that one of his social media people put up and he quickly took down when he realized the rhetoric in the photo that was attached to it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
REID: Also, Trump allies on Capitol Hill coming to his side, saying they're contemplating legislation to make it illegal for local elected officials to investigate current and former presidents.
Now the district attorney, Alvin Bragg, he has responded, saying it is an appropriate for Congress to get involved in ongoing investigations -- Pam.
BROWN: All right. Paula Reid, New York, thank you.
And up next to Mississippi, where a screening of deadly tornadoes ripped a path of destruction.
BROWN: A fresh round of dangerous storms is hammering the southeast today, again from Houston to South Carolina. Flooding and wind gusts are causing damage. But nowhere has been hit harder than Mississippi, where at least 25 people were killed in a violent tornado outbreak this weekend.
CNN's Isabel Rosales is on the ground in a small Mississippi town where residents recount horrifying stories of survival and face a daunting effort to rebuild.
JOANN WINSTON, GREAT-NIECE KILLED IN STORM: Okay, you're looking at where right here, what have you seen? And the steps were right in front of the sidewalk right there.
ISABEL ROSALES, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Devastation after violent storms ripped through the southeastern part of the us over the weekend, demolishing homes and killing dozens.
WINSTON: With everything to go on. To be honest, I can't I can't to me. I can't take no more. I just can't.
ROSALES: JoAnn Winston lost her two year old great niece, Aubrey, when an EF-4 tornado hit Mississippi late Friday night, impacting the towns of Amory, Rolling Fork and Silver City.
Winston says she found Aubrey among the debris.
WINSTON: And I didn't see no house. No nothing. And I looked around. I think the baby lying a little bit from her mom from her grand mom.
ROSALES: You saw them doing CPR on Aubrey?
ROSALES: That must have been horrible to see.
WINSTON: I had walked away.
ROSALES: Winston's niece Jessica Drain also spoke to CNN. Drain says her 8-year-old son was in the same house as two year old Aubrey. He is now in critical condition on a ventilator.
JESSICA DRAIN, 8-YEAR-OLD HURT IN STORM: He has a severe brain injury. They had to go in and take parts of his skull out.
ROSALES: He's been through surgery.
DRAIN: Yeah, he's been through Thursday.
ROSALES: They're doing more?
DRAIN: They say he's going to need about three or four more.
ROSALES: Other families also torn apart by the storms.
DAVID BROWN, PARENTS KILLED IN STORM: Words can't express what I'm feeling, I'm just broken and I'm numb.
ROSALES: David Brown's parents were killed after their neighbors 18 wheeler, landed on their Rolling Fork home during the storm.
BROWN: They're in heaven right now. And I was told that they passed away in each other's arms.
ROSALES: The governor of Mississippi confirmed Sunday that President Joe Biden approved a disaster declaration for parts of the state, allowing the federal government to help.
DEANNE CRISWELL, FEMA ADMINISTRATOR: We're going to work really closely with this, like the governor and his team and what we can do to provide that safety in that shelter right now for individuals.
ROSALES: Jessica Drain hoping her family can get help.
DRAIN: No, they got to start all over. Don't really -- you know what I'm saying? Nowhere the help is going to come from, nowhere the next meal don't come from. Roof over their head.
ROSALES: What do you guys have left?
DRAIN: They don't have anything. Nothing.
ROSALES (on camera): And as if this family needed any more heartbreak, when this tornado hit on Friday, little Aubrey's mother, Dominic Greene, she was in the hospital going into labor. She delivered a child the next day on Saturday.
So, now, as she is taking care of this newborn she's having to plan the funeral for her two year old little girl. Not just that, but also her uncle found dead from an unrelated storm, death of an apparent heart attack -- Pamela.
BROWN: How awful, wow, that's hard to even process what you just said.
Isabel Rosales in Silver City, Mississippi, thank you.
Well, the storms clearly devastating to these communities. For more information on how you can help the victims of the deadly tornadoes and severe storms that swept through Mississippi, you can go to CNN.com/ impact. And we are following another tragedy. Police are expected to give an
update on that deadly school shooting in Nashville at any moment now. So be sure to stick with us for that.
Also ahead, the panic buying and parts of Philadelphia amid worries about whether water from a nearby river is safe.
BROWN: And we're back with the world lead.
The overwhelming protests in Israel opposing a push to overhaul the country's judiciary system.
CNN's Wolf Blitzer will be reporting on this next in "THE SITUATION ROOM".
Wolf, you have spent decades covering U.S.-Israeli relations. Have you ever seen this kind of political turmoil?
WOLF BLITZER, CNN HOST, "THE SITUATION ROOM": The simple answer is no. And I've covered Israel as you correctly point out for many, many years, and it's really, really amazing to see the current president of Israel, Isaac Herzog, warned the other day that if this continues, there could be what he called a civil war in Israel.
I've never heard that kind of concern expressed within Israel. It's really causing a lot of a lot of problems for Israel. We're going to go in depth and take a closer look at all of this. Our own Nic Robertson and Hadas Gold are covering this for us. They will be joining us and we will find out what's the latest.
Barak Ravid of "Axios", who's based in Tel Aviv, he knows a lot about what's going on in Israel will join us as well.
Richard Haass, the president of the Council on Foreign Relations, he's going to join us. He spent a lot of time at the State Department dealing with U.S.-Israeli relations.
And I'm not exactly sure. Covered it -- having covered this story for a long time, having covered Netanyahu, the president of -- the prime minister of Israel, for a long time, that Netanyahu fully appreciates how much damage these policies are now doing to not only the U.S.- Israeli relationship with Israel's relationship with friendly countries in Europe and elsewhere around the world, and the damage that he's actually doing to Israel's relationship with the American- Jewish community, which is going through a tough, tough period right now. Given what's going on in Israel.
We'll go in depth and find out what the latest is right in THE SITUATION ROOM.
BROWN: Yeah, top notch reporters and analysts to discuss that. We're going to see you at the top of the hour. Thank you, Wolf Blitzer. And turning to our national leader, a day of mixed messaging on the
safety of drinking water, and Philadelphia has prompted panic buying of bottled water across the city. Well, now, city officials have an updated message for residents. The water is fine, but only until 11 59 p.m. tonight.
CNN's Danny Freeman is in Philadelphia, where water a basic life essential may or may not be safe after a chemical spill.
DANNY FREEMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Water whiplash in Philadelphia.
JOE SOLE, PHILADELPHIA RESIDENT: We're afraid to drink the regular water.
FREEMAN: The city, assuring Philadelphians the water coming out of their taps is safe to drink, at least for today.
MICHAEL CARROLL, PHILADELPHIA TRANSPORTATION, INFRASTRUCTURE & SUSTAINABILITY OFFICIAL: You do not need to go out to the store and buy water. There is not and has not been any contamination in the water that's coming out of your tap.
FREEMAN: But residents are not taking any chances after news of a nearby chemical spill.
Why don't you trust the city right now?
SOLE: Why? I mean, they sound like they really don't know what they're talking about.
FREEMAN: This all started Friday night when Trinseo, a manufacturing company 20 miles north of Philadelphia, had what it called an equipment failure, releasing an estimated 8,100 gallons of latex emulsion product into a creek that flows into Delaware River, one of Philadelphia's main sources of water.
By Sunday morning, the city said it could not be 100 percent sure chemicals wouldn't end up coming out of taps and sent this alert, recommending using bottled drinking water.
KIM KELLY, PHILADELPHIA RESIDENT: We got there were okay, go to the water. I'll see what's going on. It is bare.
FREEMAN: By the afternoon, a new alert from the city said, based on the latest sampling results in the time it takes for water to flow, they are confident tap water will remain safe to drink at least until midnight, but encouraged residents to fill up using the tap, just in case.
CARROLL: There's nothing about the water you're buying at the store that it's better than the water that you can get from your tap today.
FREEMAN: The confusion, leaving Philadelphians prioritizing caution while waiting for clarity on their water.
GERALD BROWN, PHILADELPHIA RESIDENT: You can't take your chances down there. It's just got to take care of your family. You got to be sure.
FREEMAN (on camera): Now, the city of Philadelphia should have its first press conference of the day in about 20 minutes or so. That's where we're hoping to get the answer to the question everyone's been asking here in Philadelphia. Will the water be safe to drink after midnight tonight? Pamela?
BROWN: Big question. Danny Freeman in Philadelphia, thank you so much.
At any moment, we expect an update from police on that horrible shooting there in that school in Nashville. You can follow me on Twitter, @PamelaBrownCNN, same on Instagram, or you can tweet the show @TheLeadCNN. And if you ever miss an episode of the show, just listen to THE LEAD wherever you get your podcasts.
Our coverage continues up next with Wolf Blitzer in "THE SITUATION ROOM".