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First Lady Jill Biden Visits Kyiv; School In Eastern Ukraine Bombed By Russia; Protests In Front Of U.S. Justices' Homes; Manhunt Still Ongoing For Casey White And Vickie White; Three Americans Die Of Mysterious Death In The Bahamas; San Francisco's Population Declining. Aired 5-6p ET

Aired May 08, 2022 - 17:00   ET



JESSICA DEAN CNN HOST: You are live in the CNN NEWSROOM. Hi everyone. I'm Jessica Dean in for Jim Acosta. Today, a stunning show of global support for Ukraine.


DEAN: Bono and the Edge from U2 joined by a Ukrainian musician turned soldier performing today in a Kyiv metro station. The Irish rockers not the only one who showed up in solidarity with Ukraine today. First Lady Jill Biden making a surprise visit to a Ukrainian school and meeting with Ukraine's First Lady.

U.S. diplomats return to Kyiv for the first time since the war began. At around the same time, Canadian Prime Minister Justine Trudeau officially reopened Canada's embassy in the capital and met with Ukraine's President Zelenskyy. The two leaders also took part in a crucial diplomatic call with President Biden and G-7 counterparts who vowed to phase out Russian oil imports.

On the other side of the fight, we just learned a Russian deputy prime minister visited Mariupol, a city that Russia has been trying to take over for more than two months. He's now the highest ranking Russian to set foot there since the war began. And that visit coming just a few hours before the Kremlin's victory day celebration. Tomorrow, a massive military parade will thunder through Moscow's Red Square to commemorate the Soviet defeat of the Nazis in World War II. It's a stark contrast to the fight being waged by Russian troops today.

Some 60 people are now feared dead after Russian forces bombed a school in eastern Ukraine. Dozens of civilians were sheltering at that school. CNN's Sam Kiley spoke to survivors.


SAM KILEY, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): This for Vladimir Putin is what a modern Russian victory looks like. Dozens dead or missing from a Russian air strike on a Russian-speaking village as part of a Russian campaign that Putin says is to protect his kinfolk in Ukraine. The rescuers are saying the heat is overwhelming. Local authorities

fear about 60 people died here. This was a school in Bilohorivka in eastern Ukraine. Villages were sheltering in its basement. Some had been there for weeks. Survivors were left with little but grief. We asked if his family had been with him. His mother didn't survive.

(On camera): It is not lost on anybody here that on the eve of Vladimir Putin's celebration of the Soviet victory in the second world war over Nazi Germany, it is civilians who are suffering the most in the name of Vladimir Putin's denazification of Ukraine, a country with a Jewish president.

I got slammed down by a slab, bent into a ball, then another explosion small rocks sprinkled darkness. Then I looked, and the dust settled and a ray of light appeared. Sergey (ph) crawled out and dug me out, then he dug me out, dug Uncle Tolya (ph) out, dug Aunt Ira (ph) out. We crawled all in a fog, he said.

Ukraine has stalled Russia's plans for conquest, so the Kremlin added strategic sites like oil supplies to its target list and stepped up its air strikes against civilians in eastern Ukraine, this week hitting a residential block in the strategic city of Kramatorsk.

Ukrainian politicians refer to Putin's campaign ideology as a fascist creed they call (inaudible). Speaking soon after the latest air strike, he said, they shoot prisoners, they torture women and children, they rape, they loot. They go step by step towards Naziism.

Such explanations for what is happening here don't really answer the painful question, why. Sam Kiley, CNN, Bakhmut.


DEAN: Sam, thank you.

I'm joined now by CNN national security analyst, former CIA chief of Russia operations, Steve Hall. Steve, great to see you. Thanks for making time. I want to start first with Russia's Victory Day celebration, which Sam was talking about a little bit in that piece.

Reuters is reporting tomorrow Russia will have a flyover with the so- called Doomsday plane that would protect Putin and other top officials in the event of a nuclear war. In your opinion, do you think that's a warning to the world or is this more about a show of strength domestically for Putin or maybe a little bit of both?


STEVE HALL, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: I think this particular celebration, which is important to Putin and Russians writ-large, is more focused internally in terms of are a propaganda tool. So what we're seeing is that there is this general mythology that exist inside of Russia that it was the Russians almost by themselves solely defeating Hitler and Nazi Germany.

If you talk to most Russians, they say we appreciate the Americans, Europeans' kind of little help on that at the end, but it's mostly viewed as a Soviet Russian defeat of Nazi Germany. So that's a big theme that we're going to see in these celebrations. And then, of course, that ties so naturally into the propaganda that Putin has already laid down like the first layer of concrete, which is, you know, what we're fighting in Ukraine is not really different than what we were fighting back in glorious days if World War II when we defeated other Nazis.

So he's clearly referring to as he's done publicly in the past, you know, the Nazi forces that are somehow -- that have somehow magically taken over Ukraine with a German -- excuse me, with a Jewish president. So this all kneads and knits together quite nicely for internal propaganda consumption. Something that most Russians understand and I think will react favorably to.

DEAN: And speaking of propaganda, in the recent days, we have seen evidence of Soviet imagery, Russian signs being installed in Mariupol. We know that they're changing signs that are in Ukraine. Ukrainian to Russian. We also know that the most senior Russian official yet just visited that key city. How are you interpreting those actions? It sounds like they probably just their hand in glove with what you were just talking about in terms of that internal propaganda.

HALL: Yes. So, there's another piece to that as well. And that is the long successfully executed strategy on the part of the Russians, which is, you know, you have these sort of lump parts of the country that Russia sends its troops, usually clandestinely into to start some sort of uprising. This is what happened in both Donetsk and Luhansk, together referred to as the Donbas region.

And then what happens is the Russian supporters there hold some sort of fake and completely cut from whole cloth, you know, voting process, some sort of referendum that says, yes, we want to leave Ukraine and become part of Russia. And then of course, Russia goes, well, we've got Russian speakers in this neighboring country who are being beat upon by these Nazis in Ukraine, so of course, we're going to take them in and make them part of Russia so that we can better protect them.

This is what happened when, you know, other parts of Ukraine were annexed, Crimea. And also the Russians have done this in frozen conflicts in several other locations or poised to do so. So that's what I think is probably going to happen next if Putin decides that it's going to be really, really difficult for him to get much past, militarily I mean, much past the eastern and southern portions of Ukraine.

DEAN: Right. And sources have told CNN that the U.S. provided intelligence that helped Ukraine target and sink that Russian warship last month. The Pentagon has denied providing targeting information. We know the U.S. is sharing intel though about Russian troop movements and locations. Do you think Putin was expecting as much or do you think he'll see this level of cooperation as provocative?

HALL: You know, he'll see it probably as provocative, you know, or sort of on the same par I would guess as to the United States and our western allies sending the weapons that we're sending into Ukraine. It is true, you know, having seen this in the past, it is true that we provide intelligence, not just the United States, but also the other NATO allies and the western countries provide intelligence to Ukraine, but what they do with it is entirely up to themselves.

So we provide them information and intelligence. If they choose to use it to target a particular unit or a particular set of tanks or even individuals that are high valued targets for them, that's a Ukrainian decision, and the west understands that when it starts collaborating and cooperating with Ukraine on an intelligence level.

DEAN: And the White House announced new sanctions against K0remlin- controlled media companies today. In the Cold War, the Soviet Union had propaganda that reached beyond its borders and Putin's propaganda seems more in slurs as you've been talking about. Does that make it harder for the west to break through though and counter it to get into Russia? You know, we hear from Russians who are believing all of this internal propaganda.

HALL: It's the right question to ask because there is a balance there. You do want to try to break through to the Russian population. It's extremely difficult now with the measures that Putin has taken just over the past couple of weeks and months to clamp down on the -- not just the internet, but also any form of, you know, really open communication inside of Russia. So it's very difficult, and you do want to try to break through.

On the other hand, you know, you want the sanctions to be as hard- hitting as possible. And I think the judgement that was probably made, balance that was probably struck was the idea that you've got a lot of young Russians who are very tech savvy.


The amount of VPN's, you know, this mechanism that one can use to sort of disguise where it is that you are to log on to your computer. It's just risen dramatically in Russia. So, I think what we're counting on is that young Russians particularly internet savvy Russians will be able to figure hopefully how to access this information as things continue on down the road.

DEAN: And then disseminate it. And I want to get your reaction to what the director of the CIA said this weekend about Putin's calculus with the war. We can take a listen to that.


WILLIAM BURNS, CIA DIRECTOR: He's in a frame of mind in which he doesn't believe he can afford to lose. I think he's convinced right now that doubling down still will enable him to make progress.


DEAN: So if Putin sees this as a must-win scenario, which is what the director is saying right there, then what kind of time frame is he dealing with before he needs to start worrying about his hold on power and how this affects him? HALL: I think the director is right in his assessment and the question

simply boils down to what does Putin mean when he says when or perhaps another way to put it is, how has he adjusted if at all to what he can actually consider to be a victory. We already know that what would have been a big win for him and what probably was his original plan was to take the entire country of Ukraine, lob (ph) off the leader, the head of the leadership probably literally and then install, you know, a Putin puppet government in Ukraine.

So that's not worked out very well. He's not been limited by the Ukrainian military to the east and to the south. So, will that be enough for him -- if he just takes back the Donbas for example as we were discussing earlier and says, look, now this is Russian territory, it's a great victory. Will that be enough for him and for the Russian people?

If he goes a little further south and takes the southern swath (ph) of the country, will that be enough or will he figure that no, I have to push further to reach some other kind of goal? Very difficult to tell right now, but it is asking the right question as to what's a win for Vladimir Putin at this point?

DEAN: Right. Steve Hall, thanks so much for sharing your expertise with us. We appreciate it.

HALL: My pleasure.

DEAN: Coming up, will the battle over abortion rights fire up Democratic voters in the midterms or will inflation drag them down? We're going to break it down. That's next.



DEAN: You're looking now at video of protestors marching to the homes of Chief Justice Jon Roberts and Justice Brett Kavanaugh in response to that leaked draft opinion showing the Supreme Court is poised to overturn landmark decision Roe versus Wade. And while many Democrats are furious and were also blaming their own party for not fighting back harder in the culture wars.


GAVIN NEWSOM, GOVERNOR OF CALIFORNIA: Where the hell is my party? Where's the Democratic Party? You guys paying attention? Why aren't we standing up more firmly, more resolutely? Why aren't we calling this out? This is a concerted, coordinated effort, and yes, they're winning. They are. They have been. We need to stand up. Where's the counteroffensive?


DEAN: Former Bill Clinton campaign strategist, James Carville, says he thinks he knows what's part of the problem is.


JAMES CARVILLE, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: To date, they have no fear of Democrats. That's why they do this. Democrats, you got to understand just what a huge event this is in American politics. The Democrats have won the popular vote in seven out of (inaudible) eight presidential elections. Roe is over two to one in approval. And Alito and them said, we don't care. We're not fair, and we don't care, and all the Democrats are going to do is sit around and talk about veganism and pronouns. And to some extent, that is a justified opinion that they have.


DEAN: Joining me now, CNN political analyst and Washington bureau chief for TheGrio, April Ryan and Chris Stirewalt, a senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute and a former Fox News political editor. Great to see both of you. Chris, veganism and pronouns as James Carville said. Do you believe Democrats are losing this fight?

CHRIS STIREWALT, SENIOR FELLOW, AMERICAN ENTERPRISE INSTITUTE: I tell you, James Carville as a constitutional scholar makes a pretty good political analyst. The point of the institution of the Supreme Court is that it is not reflective of the Democratic will of the people.

I find it so just preposterous that these protestors go to the justices' homes, these justices who have been pretty clear about how things are going. And when Democrats talk about this is a 50-year project, well of course, it's been a 50-year project. The people who opposed Roe v. Wade have been open and sincere about it. And it's just very strange to me at this moment the Democrats feel like making more noise or being angrier is going to make some difference here. This fight happened in previous presidential elections and previous senate elections.

DEAN: And April, I'm curious your take on this as well.

APRIL RYAN, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, you know, Chris is absolutely right. The people who are for abolishing Roe v. Wade are very passionate about it. I remember October 1 of last year when I was reporting on the first day of that session of the Supreme Court, and those who were for the abolishment of Roe v. Wade were out there praying. I mean, it was a large crowd. And now look where we are. It's passion on both sides.

But the issue is can the Democrats get the message out before the final opinion is made so that people can rally and make a difference to possibly change the final opinion if they will. The message has not been clear from the Democrats as to what's on the table, what's at stake. And a lot of people hear Roe v. Wade, Roe v. Wade, but do they really understand.

Roe v. Wade was put in place to basically set federal guidelines as to when a woman is allowed to have abortion. How long they can go until they have an abortion. And those kinds of things need to be put on the table so people can understand what they are fighting for. Yes, people are going to the justice's homes, yes they are fighting at the Supreme Court. But the broader community needs to understand the minutiae, not the cerebral speak, not this punditry, but in regular layman's terms so they can get the message across even before midterms.


DEAN: And Democratic Senator Joe Manchin has said he believes inflation, not abortion is going to be the driving factor in the midterms. We have some CNN polling on this. A majority, 66 percent said they did not support the Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade and then look at the economy, also a majority, 55 percent actually believe Biden's policies have made the economy worse. Chris, let's start with you. Which issue do you believe wins out in the fall?

STIREWALT: So abortion is an issue that if you have a strong attachment to that issue, if it's an important issue to you as a voter, you're already a decide partisan, right? You're not making your mind up on the basis of this question. The reason that for persuadable voters at least, and certainly we should say for Democratic intensity and keeping party discipline behind some moderate candidates, I'm looking at Tim Ryan in Ohio, looking at Mark Kelly in Arizona to keep progressive and far-left Democrats on board, this will be helpful.

But in the main, when you're talking about persuadable voters, you're talking about people who are concerned about the economy and concerned about inflation. So that drives votes because the abortion issue has already put people in their political corners.

DEAN: And April, what do you think? Which issue is going to drive more voters do you think?

RYAN: Jessica, as we've talked about before, politics is personal. And what hits you, what affects you, what impacts you from any abortion is big, but also the issue of inflation is huge. From water at the grocery store to bread, the prices of wheat and bread, to homes, wood, the price of wood has skyrocketed, to even grooming your dogs.

And let's go to the gas pump. How much a gallon of gas across the country and then also in California, what $5 and $6? Politics is personal, and whatever issue impacts you the most at the moment is what you're going to really to go to the polls on. So that's it.

DEAN: And April, First Lady Jill Biden making that unannounced trip to Ukraine today. She, meeting with -- was meeting with refugees as well. She also spent time with the First Lady of Ukraine. We know Speaker Pelosi, other high profile members of Congress and cabinet secretaries have gone as well.

Do you believe at this point it's time for President Biden to go as well? I have talked to some people that say the security concerns are still just too much, but do you think it's worth taking those to make that message to Putin?

RYAN: Well, security concerns are the overriding issue at this point. The First Lady traveled under stealth security, trust and belief. They scoped every pin point of where she was going to go, from the beginning to the end of the trip. And you have to remember, she's visiting the First Lady of Ukraine who has a target on her head from Putin.

And if the president of the United States goes, security will have to be tight and will have to be a stealth trip because once again, there is discord at the very least between this president and Vladimir Putin. And Putin has already threatened that he will do things to the west if we get involved. So, there has to be a clear, strategic plan that is flawless for the president to go. But at this point, we have to wait and see.

DEAN: Ad Chris, I'll just let you have a quick final thought on that as well. What's your thought on that?

STIREWALT: Well, the security, once you can take care of the security question, we've seen that it can be securely done, there's also a strategic geopolitical question. The wrap on Ukraine is that it is a U.S. puppet. If Biden is there, that may not be good for combatting Russian narrative.

And the other thing is that you have to think about, you have a leader in Zelenskyy who is enormously popular in the United States. I don't know whether that's a contrast, not to be too cynical about it, but I don't whether that's a contrast. Not to be too cynical about it, but I don't if that's a contrast that would beneficial to the president this year. So there's probably other layers of thinking underneath just the security stuff.

DEAN: All right, April Ryan and Chris Stirewalt, I appreciate you both. Thanks so much.


RYAN: Thanks, Jessica.

DEAN: Coming up, authorities offering up to a $25,000 reward in the manhunt for an inmate and the corrections officer who allegedly helped him escape. A look at the clues left behind. Plus, some analysis from a former senior FBI profiler.



DEAN: Right now, the manhunt is intensifying for an escaped Alabama inmate and the corrections officer who helped him flee. Capital murder suspect Casey White and former Jail Officer Vickie White have been on the run for 10 days now. An attorney who represented Casey White in the past says he's worried about what he will do if he's cornered by law enforcement. He detailed what happened during a prior arrest.


DALE BRYANT, FORMER ATTORNEY FOR CASEY WHITE: He was trying to get the officers to shoot him and that is kind of my fear how this situation is going to end. That except for this time, I'm afraid Casey may try to shoot one of them to get to him -- to get them to shoot him. After his arrest and in my conversations with him, he was wanting to die that day.


DEAN: CNN's Nadia Romero joins us now from Alabama. Nadia, what's the latest there?


We lost Nadia. We're going to try to get to her in just a moment to get that update. In the meantime, let's talk with former senior FBI profiler and special agent Mary Ellen O'Toole. She's joining me now. Mary, I want to start with the orange car that Vickie White purchased using an alias. It was later found they dumped that car. It's obviously much easier to spot an orange car than the other color. Did it strike you as a surprise that she bought that conspicuous color car? And what does that say to you?

MARY ELLEN O'TOOLE, FORMER SENIOR FBI PROFILER AND FORMER FBI SPECIAL AGENT: I thought it was surprising that the car was so bright because it would stand out, but there may have been reasons for it because that's what she could afford or thought she could afford or it was easy to buy, you know, right at the moment. But I thought that that was weird.

And it was also a car that looks like it wasn't in that great of shape because it looks like there were mechanical issues that caused them to leave it on the side of the road.

DEAN: Right. Right. And the sheriff has said that they drove roughly two hours north to Tennessee after disappearing. And to your point, investigators do think that SUV broke down. We also have seen in some photos that they perhaps tried to use like green spray paint or something on the vehicle trying to kind of paint over the orange. Does that give you any indication about what may have happened once they ran into that mechanical trouble?

O'TOOLE: Well, if in fact they thought enough ahead to try to paint it over, they brought the paint with them or if they left it there and went back and tried to paint it over, I mean, that would certainly go to the planning that went into it. I would think, though, once that broke down on the side of the road, their efforts at that point were to just get the heck out of there and find new transportation.

I would think that they would not have gone back to that car because they knew it was a matter of time before that car was ultimately found. So I think they would have cut their losses and just gone ahead and gotten out of there.

DEAN: And we heard from a former attorney for Casey White just a couple of minutes ago and he was talking about kind of the state of his mind, that he, the attorney was afraid Casey White would try to get police to shoot him or engage in some sort of gun fight with them. As a profiler, a former FBI profiler, what kind of suspects are law enforcement dealing with right now between Casey White and then also to, if he's still with Vickie White who was in law enforcement herself? O'TOOLE: I think what I heard his former attorney say about him and

his personality was really quite insightful. And based on the two personalities, here's what I think is going on. Vickie is in over her head. She does not know -- she does not really know Casey nearly as well as she thinks that she does. She has not lived with him. She's not familiar with his personality and his personality issues.

So, at some point, his personality is going to come out. And he's impulsive and he's volatile. And without medication, he can be very dangerous. So that's going to create stress between the two of them. And if they are cornered and his personality continues to manifest in this impulsivity and his violence, I think he could be dangerous to himself and to others.

I don't think Vickie is not aware of any of this. She didn't factor any of this into what her plans were. So at that point, I think suicide by cop is a possibility. I think suicide/homicide is also a possibility.

DEAN: Right. And Mary Ellen, I want you to stay with us. I want to bring in our correspondent Nadia Romero. We've got her shot back now. Nadia, I understand you spoke to a victim of Casey White. Can you tell us more about that?

NADIA ROMERO, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Jessica. So remember, he was facing capital murder charges. That's what brought him to the Lauderdale County Detention Center where the sheriff there believes he met Vickie White. But during that same time, he was already serving 75 years in prison for a crime spree he went on back in 2015. He was convicted of a long list of charges, including breaking and entering a vehicle and burglary.

During that time, he stole a firearm from a man named Josh Goan. And we interviewed him. We just spoke with him not long ago. He is a husband, he is a father, and he has been impacted by Casey White for the past seven or so years since that happened. He told us that his gun that stolen by Casey White was used to commit all of the other crimes, the carjacking, the attempted murder.

He has had such guilt from his own firearm being used in those crimes. And he says that he testified against Casey White and saw him being convicted. He thought all of this would be over. That that nightmare that he had to re-live will finally be done with Casey White serving 75 years in prison. So I asked him about this idea that the sheriff says that Vickie White and Casey White have this romantic relationship and she helped him escape. This was his response.



JOSH GOAN, BURGLARY VICTIM OF CASEY WHITE: I could not believe that an actual law enforcement offer helped him reenter society. I mean, she put him back into the sights of people. I'm just absolutely befuddled. I could not believe that.


ROMERO: He says he just couldn't believe it because when he was in the courtroom for that trial and he testified against Casey, he says he didn't see any humanity in him, that he was cold, that he didn't care, that he showed no remorse for any of his crimes. Jessica?

DEAN: All right, Nadia, thank you so much. And Mary Ellen, I want to bring you back in and just get your reaction to Nadia reporting there. It kind of goes back to what you were just telling me, which is Vickie White has never seen his, maybe this part of his personality come out. There's so much more to this person that's been in prison on capital murder charges.

O'TOOLE: Well, there's so much more and it will be exacerbated during this period of time where they're being investigated or looked for by the United States Marshall service. I think people need to understand that when you are the target of a national manhunt, that's very stressful. And people handle stress in different ways. Vickie will handle it one way, Casey will handle it another way.

And the way that they handle it, they will collide with one another. There's -- and to me there's no question about it that the stress will create problems in that relationship. And Casey has been described as someone that lacks empathy, that has no remorse for what they do.

And those are very concerning words to me because that suggests when things do start to go sideways with Vickie, it will be all about him and how he's doing and how he's responding and what's best for him. It will not be about Vickie. And she's probably about ready to realize that in the next upcoming day or week.

DEAN: Right. And to escape, he obviously needed Vickie's help and her money. We know she sold her house under market value. She even made up a mental health evaluation she claimed she would receive that day they escaped. And now that they are out, I mean, kind of piggybacking on what you were just saying, what does he need her for and does that put her in danger?

O'TOOLE: In my opinion, she is absolutely in danger. She completely underestimated this man. She does not know him the way she thinks that she knows him. She's relying on her 17 years working as a correctional officer. She underestimated the danger that he presents to her.

So, I think that she is in a lot of trouble and I think as he escalates and that escalation could be brought about by if he has access to drugs, if his mental health continues to deteriorate. If she disagrees with him or doesn't want something done a certain way, they are going to clash.

And as the U.S. Marshalls and law enforcement get close to them, they are going to start fighting with one another. And again, because of his size, his temperament and his impulsivity, he really poses a danger to her. I don't know if she sees it yet. I think she's probably still living in a little bit of an idealistic relationship, but eventually, she will see his personality come out. DEAN: And a former attorney who previously represented Casey White

said that he does suffer from mental illness but says he's, quote, "a decent person when he's on medication and in a supervised environment, probably not under incredible stress like he is right now.

White's former attorney also says when he gets out, he self-medicates with illegal substances and that that is when he becomes a real danger. Do you think it's possible that because Casey White was medicated, being treated behind bars in a more stable environment, it was easier for Vickie White to believe him and believe in him?

O'TOOLE: I think that's certainly true. I think that he may have groomed her. We know that there are some offenders that can be very charming. They can convince people that they're not dangerous, that they're not threatening. And there's probably some grooming behavior that took place with this relationship as it grew, and she was very susceptible to it.

This doesn't excuse her. It just kind of explains how this relationship evolved to the point where she basically threw her whole life away. So, I think it's going to take a little bit of time for her to realize what she has thrown away, that she was wrong in her assessment of him. But eventually, that will happen. And I think the stress right now, again, knowing that you are the most hunted couple in the United States creates enormous stress on these two.

DEAN: Right. Mary Allen O'Toole, thank you so much for your insight on that. We sure do appreciate it.

O'TOOLE: You're' welcome.


DEAN: Coming up, three American tourists mysteriously found dead at a luxury five-star resort in the Bahamas. What we're learning about their final hours on the island.


DEAN: An American woman back in the U.S. in a Miami hospital while three others are dead. It's still a mystery what caused the deaths of two men and a woman at the Sandals Emerald Bay Resort in the Bahamas Friday.


Police tell CNN foul play is not -- is suspected. CNN's Polo Sandoval is following this for us. Polo, what are you learning?

POLO SANDOVAL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes. Because there was no signs of trauma on the bodies, Jessica, they've been able to rule out the possibility of foul play here, but it still remains quite the mystery here especially since it's a destination that's frequented by many tourists.

Police in the Bahamas telling me that they hope to release the identities of those three Americans hopefully by tomorrow. Commissioner Paul Rolle telling me that there were basically two American couples who were vacationing at the Sandals Resort on the Great Exuma Island. Staff at the facility early Friday morning found an unconscious man in one of their villas who was later pronounced dead. A woman also in the room, she was air lifted to a hospital in the Bahamas and then we learned today that she's since been transferred to a hospital in Miami under serious condition.

Not elaborating though, at least, officials have now elaborated on the nature of her injuries. Staff also on Friday discovered (inaudible) second couple in another villa both pronounced dead by authorities. Investigators said that they had visited a local medical facility the day before they were discovered. They've been complaining about nausea and vomiting.

They were treated and then allowed to return back to their lodging. They also showed signs of convulsion when they were discovered on Friday. So that's why environmental scientists, Jessica, are involved right now working with authorities to make sure that this wasn't any kind of broader public health emergency. That it was in fact isolated, which it seems to be the case according to authorities.

Now, when it comes to Sandals Resorts, Jessica, they did release a statement early on saying that they followed their protocols during this emergency and they are now in contact with investigators assisting them as well as the family of those affected here. So, even though they've been able to rule out foul play, this is still a big mystery as we go into the week now as we try to find out exactly what led to these three deaths and the injury of this woman.

DEAN: Right. No question. Polo Sandoval, thanks so much for that update. We appreciate it.

SANDOVAL: Thank you.

DEAN: We'll be right back after a quick break.



DEAN: My risotto does not look like that. Be sure to tune in. "Stanley Tucci: Searching for Italy" air tonight at 9:00 eastern right here on CNN.

It is a destination city for many Americans, but in 2020 amid the pandemic, San Francisco saw a dramatic drop in its population. Those working from home decided to make home elsewhere. And as CNN's Natasha Chen reports, the exodus has created new opportunities for some longtime residents.


NATASHA CHEN, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): In spite of Tony Jung's big tech salary in San Francisco --

TONY JUNG, MOVED OUT OF SAN FRANCISCO: I felt like I was below middle class and I had no real financial future in San Francisco.

CHEN (voice-over): He shared a house with two roommates where his portion of rent was $2,600 a month. But then remote work suddenly allowed him to move to Austin, Texas where he bought a house with a yard. The monthly mortgage is $1,000 less than his San Francisco rent.

JUNG: I don't see myself ever going back.

CHEN (voice-over): In 2019, top earners in the Bay Area made 11 1/2 times as much as those at the bottom, the biggest income gap of any region in the state according to a nonprofit and a nonpartisan public policy thinktank. And while San Francisco's growth had already slowed in the decade before the pandemic, 2020 was the first year San Francisco saw a population loss. Some like Jung gave up on the city's seemingly worsening problems on top of the pandemic.

JUNG: I was walking over leftover needles and drug paraphernalia.

CHEN (voice-over): Tents filled certain streets and wildfire smoke sometimes filled the air.

UNKNOWN: There was a time period in 2020 when it was like holy moly, like what is going on?

CHEN (voice-over): Business owner Amanda Michael (ph) watched some of her friends and staff leave, too. But she's invested here, even saving the historic Toy Boat ice cream shop in the Richmond district that was about to close. Despite the shop being the target of vandalism and petty theft during the pandemic, she's seeing positive change among remaining residents.

UNKNOWN: Merchant corridors like this, neighborhoods where there's like a real sense of community. That community during all of this has really solidified.

CHEN (on camera): Long residents and business owners tell me the population loss may not be permanent. To them that pandemic exodus feels more like one moment in the city's many ups and downs.

(Voice-over): In fact, by the end of 2021, the trend of more people moving away with fewer people moving in appears to be slowing. And because thousands of people had left, some found better rental deals like "The Booksmith," a shop that moved to a new location still along Haight Street where it's been for more than 45 years.

CAMDEN AVERY, BUYER/MANAGER OF THE BOOKSMITH: What keeps me here is sort of a continual sense of possibility and openness.


CHEN (voice-over): To Camden Avery, the buyer and manager of "The Booksmith," the departure of people who were only tied to the city for work leaves more rooms for artists and marginalized people who find a safe harbor in San Francisco's culture.

AVERY: To live however they want. To be themselves. To figure out what that even means.

CHEN (on camera): If they can afford it.

AVERY: If they can afford it.

UNKNOWN: You know, you go through different booms and bust. The next phase will be interesting as all of these phases are and there are probably be good and bad things about it. There's nowhere else I'd want to be.

CHEN (voice-over): Natasha Chen, CNN, San Francisco.


DEAN: And that's going to do it for me. I'm Jessica Dean in for Jim Acosta. Pamela Brown takes over the CNN NEWSROOM live after a quick break. Have a great night.