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Three Killed, 15-Year-Old Student in Custody in Michigan High School Shooting; Supreme Court to Hear Pivotal Abortion Rights Case Wednesday. Aired 3:30-4p ET
Aired November 30, 2021 - 15:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ASHA RANGAPPA, CNN LEGAL AND NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: From the things that they are not doing and are, you know, basically in trouble for say with January 6th.
VICTOR BLACKWELL, CNN HOST: Yes, and we have seen some would be attackers who cited the vitriol on Capitol Hill. There was a man in New York who was arrested who said he wanted to kill Ilhan Omar and cited what was said about her by some of her colleagues there in Washington. Asha Rangappa, thank you so much.
RANGAPPA: Thank you.
ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN HOST: All right, we're getting more information now about the breaking news out of Michigan where three people, all of them believed to be students, have been killed in a school shooting. We have a live update on what's happening there on the ground next.
ANNOUNCER: This is CNN breaking news.
CAMEROTA: We are following horrible breaking news out of Michigan. Yet another school shooting. Three people, all of them believed to be students were killed. A short time ago, the Oakland County undersheriff spoke outside of the high school.
MIKE MCCABE, UNDERSHERIFF, OAKLAND COUNTY, MICHIGAN: Around 12:51 today, we received a 911 call of an active shooter at the high school. Deputies immediately responded and we received over a hundred 911 calls into our dispatch.
The deputies took a suspect into custody within five minutes of the original 911 call. They recovered a handgun from the suspect. The suspect fired multiple shots. There's multiple victims. It's unfortunate that I have to report that we have three deceased victims right now who are all believed to be students. We have six others that were shot, one was a schoolteacher. They're all at local hospitals being treated for various injuries. Again, multiple shots were fired. He did not give us any resistance
when he was taken into custody. He's currently being transported back to Pontiac for potential -- well, he's already invoked his right to not spoke. So, he wants an attorney. He's not telling us anything at this point in time. It's a very tragic situation obviously.
We will brief you again later, maybe around 5:00. We can give you ages of the victims, conditions of the victims, where they live, things of that nature. Behind us in Meijer, they close the store down for us and helped us with reunification with the parents. We have a lot of upset parents wanting to know what's going on with the kids. There was an orderly evacuation, the school did everything right. Everybody remained in place. They barricaded themselves, and Tim here has done a great job in terms of preparing.
You never want to prepare for something like this, but you have to, and the school district's done a wonderful job preparing. All the doors over there are marked at the high school, if you've seen them, deputies responded. They knew where to go. We have had assistance from other police agencies nearby. Lapeer County sheriff, Oxford police department, other local police departments, the response has been overwhelming. We're still doing a secondary and will do a third search of the high school just to make sure there's no other victims out there. If there's anything I missed I can answer, I will answer and I'll defer Tim -- a
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: (INAUDIBLE) this is students?
MCCABE: Yes, it's a 15-year-old student who was a sophomore at the high school.
BLACKWELL: All right, Alexandra Field is back with more information. What have you learned?
ALEXANDRA FIELD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: You heard the undersheriff say it, a 15-year-old sophomore at the high school, the suspected shooter. He appears to be the only suspect at this point. We know that he was armed with a semiautomatic handgun. It doesn't appear there were other weapons or any body armor. But these are, again, the early minutes into this investigation. Authorities will continue to look into it.
There were 25 agencies that responded to this high school following a hundred 911 calls. Investigators who have been inside the building say they have started to recover shell casings, 15 to 20 shots fired. We know the suspect was taken into custody without resisting arrest.
We do understand that there is a deputy who is assigned full-time to the high school who did assist in the arrest of that suspect. So, there will of course be more questions, more to learn about where that deputy was positioned. What role the deputy had as these shots began to ring out just before 1:00 in the afternoon. The shooting spree lasted about five minutes.
You heard the undersheriff say that the suspect is not talking, invoking his right not to speak. So, at this point, they don't know if he was targeting particular students, particular teachers or staff members. If there was a particular classroom, he had set his sights on, what might have motivated or triggered him. We do know that they're going to be speaking to as many students as possible. They have already said that they will of course be going through social media imminently. We know that is key to unfurling a lot of the clues in these cases that happened just all too often.
CAMEROTA: Yes, they do happen all too often, and it's sickening. Three sets of parents send their kids to school today, and don't know they're sending their kids to be sitting ducks to be killed today. And I mean, I was just looking at statistics. As of late October, these are the last stats that we have. 44 school shootings have happened this year, in kindergarten through 12th grade. So, just like this, we're not counting this one. And as you pointed out earlier, the police made it there almost instantly, within five minutes they had the suspect in custody because they have gotten so good at this.
FIELD: Right, so the police respond right away. You have 25 agencies that respond. The whole thing is done in five minutes. The suspect is taken into custody in less than five minutes.
You still have some nine people who are shot either injured or killed. You know that this is a school and a community that had practiced. They had trained. They had protocols in place. You heard the undersheriff say that the students knew to barricade. They were later evacuated. Three sweeps of the building were done, to see if anyone else could be found, shooters or victims.
So, look, the training kicked in here. People did what they're supposed to do in the event that something like this happens because they were prepared to do it. And yet even with all of the preparation, this is the chaos, this is the tragedy that unfolds. Because when you bring a semiautomatic handgun into the school, the danger can be done this quickly. Nine people shot and killed, the question of course --
BLACKWELL: Nine shot, three of them killed.
FIELD: Thank you. The question that of course will now be asked is how did this student get a gun into the school. That's something that authorities are reviewing. They have already indicating that they have an idea of how he got gun into the school. They are not able to say or not willing to say just yet what they think that sequence of events was.
BLACKWELL: And you make a good point. There is a deputy who was there, who was assigned to the school, that's no guarantee of safety obviously in this case but play add role we'll find out later in getting this 15-year-old in custody. Alex Field, thank you so much.
CAMEROTA: OK, also joining us right now is former Chicago police officer and law enforcement analyst Dimitri Roberts. Dimitri, this is just horrible for us to have to report on again. What do you see in the scant details that we have so far? DIMITRI ROBERTS, FORMER CHICAGO POLICE OFFICER: Well, first of all, as
we've all said, as everybody around the country is feeling this, this is another horrible incident that we have to deal with. But more so that it's playing out in one of our cities that me as a former police officer swore to protect. So, this really hits the law enforcement community just as hard as it hits the victims and the broader community around these issues.
What we know so far as you guys have reported that there might be other victims, that what officers are thinking about right now is the broader public safety and the families of the victims. Obviously, we want to understand what this 15-year-old individual's motives might have been. But then we have to think about preserving the crime scene.
So, there's a lot going on at play, but I can't stress enough that the officers on the scene responded very quickly. Their training kicked in. But more so than anything, right now, they are transitioning into a support role for those families of these victims as we all, our hearts pour out to them from each and every corner of the country right now.
BLACKWELL: You can imagine the calls that are going between the parents and now the students trying to find out if they can get through to them. Are you OK? And they're doing potentially a third sweep of the school to find out -- you know, when sometimes these things happen, the students did leave the building, but some people run to closets, run to safe spaces until someone gets to them. They're going to see if there's anything else there as well.
You see first responders leaving the building now. I wonder, Dimitri, if you found any special significance in the description of how this suspected shooter responded? That he did not resist, that he stayed silent, he's not talking to the authorities right now, discussing the motive at all. What's that means to you as we've seen shootouts? We've seen barricade situations in other school shootings.
ROBERTS: Well, as a trained investigator, and as many other trained investigators will look at this and say, this speaks to a very high level of pre-meditation, Victor. That means that this was well thought out, well planned, and that this individual knew that at the point they were going to come into contact with law enforcement -- which they anticipated -- they knew what to do and what to say to further this act.
And what I mean by further this act is anytime you deal with a suspect that says immediately and what we use in the law enforcement terms of lawyer up, that means that this person kind of knows what path they want to take. Which again, Victor, speaks to a very high level of pre- meditation, which is very surprising to hear that coming from a 15- year-old.
CAMEROTA: You know, after something like this, we always have these debates in this country, when is the right time to talk about these things? When is the right time to take action? One thing that you hear pro-gun rights people say is well, just put more police in schools. There was a deputy in this school. I believe there was also a deputy in the Parkland massacre. I believe there were two cops in the school in Columbine. I'll check my facts on that. But my point is you having been a cop, what can a deputy -- an unsuspecting deputy in that moment do in the minutes or seconds when a 15-year-old, you know, bent on a massacre comes in with a semiautomatic rifle.
ROBERTS: Well, regardless of age or background, somebody that has a pre-meditated and calculated focus on hurting somebody, the only way we get ahead of that is by knowing the information ahead of time or having some early warning system where we can get better data at the right time to make better decisions and have a more proactive approach.
And you have heard me talk about this before. It's talking about how we take law enforcement in this country from a reactive solution to a proactive solution, and that's where I think the broader conversation needs to be focused around, especially on the other side of things like this.
And the other thing I'll say when we think about gun activists in this country, listen, this is all good for things we want advocate for, it's all good until it touches your home, your family or one of your loved ones. And we pray that this doesn't happen to anybody else, but I hope and I pray in my own right that this sparks a sensible conversation about how we move forward to, again, a proactive solution around these things.
BLACKWELL: Without the cooperation of this suspected shooter, this 15- year-old, talk us through the steps of what they will try to figure out now about motive, why this happened? Why he went to the school with a gun?
ROBERTS: Well, again, what they really want to think about, and what any law enforcement officer or agent wants to think about in this space is that are there any other imminent attacks? Was he a lone wolf? Is this a cohort? Is this somehow tied to some broader network or organization that has other nefarious intent for other, you know, organizations or schools or things like that or particularly around what we call the, you know, the tender age, you know, schools or soft targets, if you will.
So, when we think about motive, we really want to get down to the fidelity of are there other attacks being planned? And once we get past that point, now we think about preserving the crime scene, processing the crime scene, and really understanding how we get back to how this 15-year-old got a gun in the first place, and then where the hell is his parents at, to be quite frank.
CAMEROTA: Yes, I was just looking through my notes to see if the undersheriff has told us anything about that, but I think that they think that he operated alone, but I'm just not seeing enough details yet but of course that will come out. Dimitri Roberts, thank you very much for helping us through this horrible, horrible, breaking news.
ROBERTS: Thank you. BLACKWELL: All right. We of course will continue to follow the
breaking news there in Oxford, Michigan. But right now, we know that the Supreme Court tomorrow, the justices will hear arguments about a case that could have major implications for abortion rights across this country. We'll tell you what to expect next.
BLACKWELL: Tomorrow, the Supreme Court will hear arguments about a Mississippi law that bans abortions after 15 weeks.
CAMEROTA: This court is widely believed to be more sympathetic to opponents of abortion rights than in any other in a generation. Joining us is CNN's Supreme Court analyst Joan Biskupic. So, Joan, explain to us why this case is important and poses such a threat to Roe vs. Wade.
JOAN BISKUPIC, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: Sure Alisyn, good to see you and Victor. I have to say, there's been so much anticipation for tomorrow's hearing. So, much build up politically and legally and rightly so.
The Mississippi law at issue here would ban abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy. And what Roe v. Wade said in 1973 is that a woman has a right to end a pregnancy before viability. That is when a fetus can survive outside the womb. And that point right now is at essentially 23 weeks.
So, if the Supreme Court were to uphold Mississippi's ban at 15 weeks, it's an invitation to slide that even lower and it essentially cuts out the core of Roe V. Wade. And what Roe said in 1973 is that the constitution's 14th amendment has a liberty right that covers privacy that would include a woman's right to end abortion and -- to end a pregnancy.
But then in 1992, when the justices had a chance to reconsider that, and it was a very Republican-dominated court at that point, there was a 5-4 majority to uphold Roe and to say Americans have lived with this. The viability firewall, so to speak or cut-off line is one that is workable and we're going to affirm it.
So, what you have before the Supreme Court tomorrow, Alisyn, are two very, you know, potent rulings that have been around for decades. One saying first and foremost that viability is the line and the second saying, we might not have wanted a right to abortion, but it's been around long enough and the court has some institutional integrity here, and they were going to keep it.
Now we're going to see tomorrow whether this new Roberts court is different from what we had in 1992.
CAMEROTA: Yes, we will. And Joan, we'll look for updates from you. Joan Biskupic, thank you.
BISKUPIC: Thank you.
BLACKWELL: Well, scientists are now working to find answers on the Omicron variant's severity, the transmissibility. And there's a growing number of countries that have confirmed cases now. Dr. Sanjay Gupta joins "THE LEAD" ahead.
BLACKWELL: Tiger Woods is speaking about his future in golf after suffering serious leg injuries during a car accident in February. He says that he doesn't know when he'll play again at the tour level, but he's just happy that he can participate in the sport at all.
CAMEROTA: The 15-time major champion also reflected on how much more difficult this recovery has been compared to previous injuries.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TIGER WOODS, 15-TIME MAJOR CHAMPION: It's been a lot of hard work. I'm very thankful to all the surgeons and especially the nurses who are the unsung heroes through all of it who were there by my bed and kept my spirits up. All my friends and family.
There were some tough times in there. There were some really, really tough times and pain got pretty great at times, but they helped me get through it, and I'm on the better side of it, but I've still got a long way to go.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CAMEROTA: I'm sure.
BLACKWELL: I remember the video that day of the crash site and just glad that he survived the crash. But he will certainly be -- and there it is. I mean you remember seeing this video.
When I was in local, I covered the players championship in Florida at Sawgrass and tickets that year -- more than a decade now -- were less than impressive. I remember when the organizer announced that Tiger was going to compete, and he cried real tears because that's how important he is to the game and how tickets shot through the roof.
CAMEROTA: Well, this is my point. Is that golf for him was more than his livelihood? It was his identity.