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Zelenskyy: Occupiers Being Pushed Away From Kharkiv; Russia Has Fired 10-12 Hypersonic Missiles; U.S. House Passes $40 Billion Ukraine Aid Bill; U.S. Gas Price Hike; Combating Inflation; Escalating China- Taiwan tensions; Alabama Manhunt; U.S. Gun Violence; U.S. Wildfires; Climate Change Reveals Dark Past in Lake Mead; Musk to Reverse Trump's Twitter Account; iPod Model to be Discontinued; Batali Found Not Guilty of Indecent Assault. Aired 2-3a ET

Aired May 11, 2022 - 02:00   ET




ROSEMARY CHURCH, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: Hello and welcome to our viewers joining us here in the United States and all around the world. You're watching CNN NEWSROOM and I'm Rosemary Church. Just ahead. The pivotal Ukrainian city of Odessa being pummeled by hypersonic Russian missiles. U.S. intelligence now warning the war could become even more unpredictable.

And Election Night in America. Voters in two ruby red states cast key primary ballots.


REP. ALEX MOONEY (R-WV): Donald Trump loves West Virginia and West Virginia loves Donald Trump.

CHURCH (voice over): But a little less excitement from the Trump- backed candidate in Nebraska.

Plus, the moment cops busted and escaped Alabama inmate. A new information about how the fugitive planned his 11 days on the run to end.

ANNOUNCER: Live from CNN Center. This is CNN NEWSROOM with Rosemary Church.

CHURCH: Good to have you with us. And we begin this hour with new claims that Ukrainian forces are holding back the Russian offensive in the Donbas region and actually recapturing territory in and around Kharkiv. Ukraine second biggest city has been the scene of some intense fighting. Drone footage shows Ukrainian troops targeting a Russian T-90 tank. Ukraine's military says Russia has sent about 500 troops from Donetsk and Luhansk to Kharkiv.

Analysts believe Moscow wants to protect supply lines from Russia and guard against cross border attacks.


VOLODYMY ZELENSKY, PRESIDENT OF UKRAINE(through translator): The armed forces of our state provided us all with good news from the Kharkiv region. The occupiers are gradually being pushed away from Kharkiv.


CHURCH: A U.S. defense official says Russia has fired about 10 to 12 hypersonic missiles at targets in Ukraine since the start of this conflict. Ukrainian officials claim a new type of hypersonic missile hit a shopping mall and two hotels in the port city of Odessa on Monday. A military commander in Mariupol says many soldiers are badly wounded after the Russian bombardment of the Azovstal steel factory. An estimated 100 civilians remain trapped in that plant.

Well, meanwhile, Belarus is deploying Special Forces to its border with Ukraine. The head of the military says it's meant to counter the buildup of U.S. and allied troops.

In Washington, U.S. House lawmakers have just approved a major aid package for Ukraine. Roughly $40 billion. The bill passed 368 in favor to 57 oppose. All the no votes came from Republicans. The bill now heads to the Senate and if passed will be signed into law by U.S. President Joe Biden.

CNN's Melissa Bell is live this hour for us in Lviv, Ukraine. She joins us now. So, Melissa, what more are you learning about to Ukraine fighters pushing back Russian forces around Kharkiv and what this could mean?

MELISSA BELL, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, as far as President Zelenskyy is concerned, he says that this could mark a new phase in the war, Rosemary. Giving an indication of the hope on the side of the Ukrainians, at least as to what the taking of these positions mean. What we're talking about are essentially four towns to the north of Kharkiv and south of the Russian border.

And of course, that's important because it shows that counter offensive by Ukrainians is making progress. But mostly, of course, because of the importance of the supply lines, the supply routes that Russia is hoping to keep open. So, a victory for the Ukrainians and another indication that their counter offensive is working, or at least that the Russians are being kept at bay is what's happening to the southeast of Kharkiv in the town of Izyum where -- as far as we can tell and the understanding in terms of the troop movements on the ground is that this town that had been taken Run by Russian forces on April 4 -- April 1st is essentially still the scene of intense fighting.


BELL: But it looks as though Ukrainian forces may have managed to stop for now or slowed or stalled at least the Russian advance. Now I mentioned a moment ago, that intense fighting a grisly discovery there just yesterday, 44 bodies of civilians found in a collapsed building. A reminder really of the intensity of that fighting and the shelling specifically of the town that took place throughout the month of month of April.

We don't know how long they'd been there the under. We understand that they had been sheltering in the basement when they were killed. It's understood, say Ukrainian officials that there could be more bodies to be found. But a sign that the counter offensive is working. And that that momentum, at least according to what President Zelenskyy had to say yesterday, is something that Ukraine is going to be looking towards as it continues its fight against the Russian's attempt to extend their territorial games.

It's not just in the Donbas region but as you mentioned a moment ago, Rosemary to the south, and crucially along that southern coast.

CHURCH: Melissa Bell joining us from Lviv in Ukraine. Many thanks for that. And joining me now from Kyiv is Emine Dzhaparova. Ukraine's First Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs. Thank you so much for joining us.



CHURCH: Thank you so much. And I do want to start with the critical southern port city of Odessa that was hit by Russian hypersonic missiles. Targeting to hotels and a shopping mall. How confident are you that Ukraine can hang on to that crucial port city in the midst of these intensified attacks, particularly if Russia continues to use hypersonic missiles that can of course evade detection?

DZHAPAROVA: It's a war no one can be sure. But what I find probably the most amazing as well as the whole world is the (INAUDIBLE) Ukraine army. Its capacity and its spirit. Because we all know that Russia has failed to accomplish its initial goal, because Putin was sure that he will take control over my country in three days. And no one would do anything just same as it happened in 2014 when he invaded Crimea and Donbas and before when he hit Georgia.

So, what I am sure for today is that our battle capacity, the military capacities are much higher. And by the way, thanks to our international partners, including the United States, with a Lend-Lease law and the Congress approval of the allocation of $14 billion of U.S. Because what we've been pushing for is weaponry, weaponry and weaponry. And the final point that I want to deliver is that, look, when evil is not stopped and becomes bigger, this is exactly why we're having the war because we didn't stop it in 2014.

So, if we are not able to contain it today and I believe that it's not only the Ukrainian responsibility because we've been fighting the evil. Otherwise, if it's not stop here, if it's not contained here, it will become bigger. So this is our -- let's say, not even the regional. It's our international responsibility to stop Putin here. CHURCH: You mentioned the $40 billion, it has, of course, passed through the House of Representatives, it then has to go to the Senate and then eventually be signed into law by U.S. President Biden. But that's all going to take time. More lives will be lost in the midst of all of that, what exactly does Ukraine need right now in addition to what it already has?

DZHAPAROVA: It's a sensitive information, and I probably would not be public in saying so. But these are the multi-launch rocket system. This is artillery system. This is armored vehicles, and all of the systems like unmanned machines and drones. This is what we need in order to not only defend ourselves but also to occupy territories because as you rightly said in your report from Lviv set, indeed, Putin has been delivering his speech on 9th of May which is the D-Day I would say.

The chauvinistic day when they monopolize the victory of the Second World War with Russia and kind of, you know, making this parallel with fighting the Nazis and fascists. Putin is trying to justify his crime. He is trying to deliver to his nation that they are the victims and they are fighting for sacred things like their sacred and their historical lens like Crimea and others, and they believe that the southern part of my country is also the historical lens because they have launched the new job, the project, which is called Have Some People's Republic.

Just the same logic as it is in the so-called Donetsk People's Republic in Luhansk People's Republic. So he really wants to take the whole south and eastern part to cut us off from the access to the seas, both black and SFC. This is his long-term plan. But again, let me stress once again that he once failed to perform his glory in Ukraine because he was sure that in three days he will destroy us.


DZHAPAROVA: And this is how the negotiation started when their delegation brought up the maps and said, we're going to kill you, we're going to destroy you here, here here. And when they fail -- when they failed to do so, they started -- let's say, negotiating. It was sure -- it was for sure decoration. So today, I think that Putin -- this is the beginning of his end. His (INAUDIBLE) his war, his full- fledged war, the atrocities that we have all seen in Ukraine is the beginning of Russia's end.

CHURCH: Emine Dzhaparova, thank you so much for talking with us. We do appreciate it.

DZHAPAROVA: Thank you.

CHURCH: Well, we are following breaking news Al Jazeera says one of its journalists has been shot and killed in the West Bank while on assignment, covering clashes between Israeli security forces and Palestinians. The Palestinian health ministry has confirmed her death. We want to go now to CNN's Hadas Gold who joins us live from Jerusalem. Hadas, this is a tragic outcome. What more are you learning about this deadly shooting? HADAS GOLD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: This is absolutely terrible news, Rosemary that a reporter for Al Jazeera, a well-known veteran correspondent of the network, who has been working for Al Jazeera in Jerusalem for decades was shot and killed while on assignment covering clashes between Israeli security forces and Palestinians in the West Bank town of Jenin. Past the Ministry of Health says she was shot and killed by a live bullet to the head.

A second journalist producer Ali Samodi was also shot in the back but he is in stable condition. Now the circumstances are still being worked out. But we are seeing a video in the aftermath where it is very clear that Shireen is wearing a protective vest with the big words press across of it. Al Jazeera is saying in a statement that they are accusing the Israeli forces in the area of shooting her.

They say we call on the international community to condemn and hold the Israeli occupation forces accountable for deliberately targeting and killing our colleague Shireen Abu Akleh. The Israeli Defense Forces says in a statement, they are investigating the event and looking into the possibility they say that the journalists were hit by Palestinian gunmen. The Israeli Defense Forces said that they were in Jenin area of the West Bank to conduct counterterrorism activity in order to apprehend terrorist suspects.

They say that during that activity, they came under massive fire. They say that tens of armed Palestinian gunman shot at them and hurled explosive devices towards their soldiers, and that the soldiers responded with fire towards the sources of the fire and explosive devices. Now the circumstances details are still being worked out. But obviously this is an incredibly tragic and terrible situation whenever a journalist is killed while they're doing their duty.

Shireen was a well known veteran correspondent of the Al Jazeera network. Has been working in Jerusalem for many decades. Rosemary?

CHURCH: Yes. It is just an absolute tragedy. And we will continue of course to bring details to our viewers on this. Hadas Gold joining us live from Jerusalem.

Well, still to come here on CNN NEWSROOM. Another key test for the power of Donald Trump's endorsement. How to candidates backed by the former U.S. president fared in their primary races. We'll take a look.



CHURCH: We turn to U.S. politics now and the two closely watched Republican primaries that put former President Donald Trump's influence over his party to the test. In West Virginia, Trump's endorsement appears to help secure victory for Congressman Alex Mooney. CNN projects Mooney will win over fellow Congressman Dave McKinley for a newly formed district. But Trump's preferred candidate for Nebraska's Republican primary for governor did not come out ahead.

CNN projects that Jim Pillen will win that race over Trump-backed Charles Herbster. And political analyst Michael Genovese is president of the Global Policy Institute at Loyola Marymount University. And is also the author of The Modern Presidency: Six Debates That Define the Institution. And he joins me now from Los Angeles. Always good to have you with us.


CHURCH: So Republicans voted in West Virginia and Nebraska last night in two key tests of the endorsement power of Donald Trump, he proved a successful Kingmaker in West Virginia but not so in Nebraska. I want to start with West Virginia where CNN projects Trump endorsed Alex Mooney will win the GOP primary, but that shouldn't be much of a surprise, should it? Given Trump won that state by more than 68 percent in 2020.

So, how much comfort -- should the former president take from this wind coming right after his success last week in Ohio with his pick J.D. Vance?

GENOVESE: Well, this one was expected. So, of course, the president is going to be pleased, less pleased, however, will he be over the other race that's -- that also occurred, the Nebraska governor's race where he lost that one. He backed a stronger candidate in West Virginia than in Nebraska, where he backed someone who was obsessively loyal to the president. And so that was the litmus test.

How loyal are you to the president? And he supported someone who was actually quite a weak candidate.

WALLACE: Yes, I mean, let's look at that because we have Jim Pillen. He'll win the GOP gubernatorial primary. Of course, he wasn't Trump's pick, Charles Herbster was. But he faces sexual misconduct allegations made by eight women. Talk to us about the factors that put Pillen ahead of Herbster and how worried a Trump should be by this outcome?

GENOVESE: Well, in a way, Pillen back in because Herbster was such a bad candidate, as you mentioned, charges of sexual harassment. One by a Republican state legislator. So, he backs candidates who love him the most, who are most loyal to him. You saw that in the West Virginia race. You saw it in Nebraska. And so that's Trump's weakness.


GENOVESE: The weakness is that if you love me I'll love you back. If you don't love me I'm out to get you. And so, you know, it was a split decision. I'm sure things are not terribly happy in Mar-a-Lago right now. Trump needs to be the kingmaker, needs to be seen as the kingmaker. But Nebraska said he might also be a bit of a Humpty Dumpty. And so, Trump is basing his power on two different things. Fear and love.

The base loves him. Party regulators fear him. If he loses one or two more races in the next few cycles, they'll fear him less, and he'll become much less of a factor. CHURCH: Interesting. I mean, let's look at how much a Trump endorsement is really worth given what you've just said. How would you expect all these Republican primary races to play out for the former president?

GENOVESE: Well, you know, the really big test is going to come in at the end of the month on the 24th in Georgia, because that was the state that Trump lost in 2020. He claimed that he won it and blames two state elected officials. The governor, Kemp and Secretary of State Raffensperger. Raffensperger is the famous one from the Trump foreign policy who just find the 11,780 votes.

They both went by the rule of law, Trump wanted them to follow loyalty to him. And so, Trump is obsessed with getting both of those candidates defeated. So that's going to be a tremendously important test. If he can get both of them knocked out in Georgia, then he's got the power that he's always been claiming and that he really needs. If he loses one or both, then again, he's much more weakened. He's not going to have the oomph.

He's not going to have the fear factor. And so, Georgia is going to be the key test one way or another.

CHURCH: Interesting. And Michael, on the other side of the political spectrum, President Joe Biden is blasting ultra MAGA Republicans and their inflation plans and insisting that his approach works better as he makes inflation his top domestic priority now for the midterm elections. How will that approach likely work for him, though, do you think? Because everyone blames him, despite, you know, most of us who have read about this know that it's because of the pandemic. It's because of the supply chain being impacted by that, and the war in Ukraine. But most people they see, Biden's in power, inflation is high. So it's

his fault.

GENOVESE: Well, it's a very short-handed way to understand politics. You either praise or blame the incumbent, whether it's his fault or not. And in some cases, it is the incumbents fault. And in some cases, its forces beyond the president's control. So the question is, will Biden be a Biden burden to the Democrats or will he give them a Biden bump? You'll notice that he's not mentioning Donald Trump by name. He's talking about radical MAGA voters.

And so, he doesn't want to give Donald Trump any more oxygen than he already has, which is much -- too much according to Biden. So what he's trying to do is kind of break some of those Republicans off from the Trump loyalists and say, you know, their plan is too radical. It's too extreme. It's too Trump oriented. It's the radical MAGA agenda. And a lot of party regulars might be sympathetic to that view but they need something to vote for. And I don't know that President Biden is doing much to attract those voters.

CHURCH: All right. We'll keep watching. Of course, Michael Genovese, always a pleasure to chat with you. Appreciate it.

GENOVESE: Good to see you, Rosemary. CHURCH: Great. And still to come. A routine flight takes a turn for the worse. How one passenger save the day by landing the plane with no experience in the cockpit.

Also ahead, rising inflation and soaring gasoline prices. Can the White House turn this around? The latest remarks from the U.S. president. We're back in just a moment.



CHURCH: Welcome back, everyone. A key measure on U.S. inflation comes out in the next few hours. The Consumer Price Index report could give a better sense of whether inflation is nearing its peak. The U.S. president says fighting inflation is his top domestic priority. Joe Biden blames the pandemic and Russia's war in Ukraine for the economic trouble and says he understands the frustrations families are facing. Take a listen.


JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I know the families all across America are hurting because of inflation. I understand what it feels like. I come from a family where when the pet -- when the price of gas or food went up. We felt it. It was a discussion at the kitchen table.


CHURCH: And the cost of gasoline has been going up with the national average hitting a fresh new high on Tuesday. CNN's Pete Muntean has details.


PETE MUNTEAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): Gas experts are now calling it a crisis from California to Ohio where in the span of one day, a gallon of regular at this Marathon Station jumped 24 cents.

CHRIS WEST, CINCINNATI, OHIO RESIDENT: We're really noticing it now.

MUNTEAN: Chris West is paying more than the national average which hit $4.37 Tuesday according to AAA. The new all time high crushed the previous record of 4.33 set two months ago.

WEST: I'm stretching it out. I'm not going as many places we tend to take my husband's car which gets better gas mileage. It's just really a shame that this is where we're at.


MUNTEAN (voiceover): The national average has jumped 17 cents in the last week. Experts say, in part due to the ongoing war in Ukraine. At this station in Long Beach, California, gas has just shy of $6 a gallon. UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It's just breaking the bank. I still have to go to work every day. And I'm not making any more money. So, all my money is going to gas these days.

MUNTEAN (voiceover): Experts think prices will ease over the next month. But relief might not last into what's expected to be a huge summer travel season.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This will be probably one of the most expensive summers ever.

TOM KLOZA, GLOBAL HEAD OF ENERGY ANALYSIS, OPIS: I think July and August is anybody's guess. And there's absolutely no relief in the price for diesel, which is going to be something that infiltrates every milk and cranny of the economy.

JOE BIDEN, U.S. PRESIDENT: Good morning.

MUNTEAN (voiceover): Addressing soaring prices Tuesday, President Joe Biden called inflation a top challenge facing families.

BIDEN: They're doing everything in their power to figure out how not to have to show up the gas pump.

WEST: I think it's a shame. I think something needs to be done. We got to get something figured out here. I mean this is really hard on most Americans.


MUNTEAN (on camera): There is not much the Biden administration can do about this, but to put a pause on the Federal gas tax. Right now, set at about 18 cents a gallon. That would negate the price increases we have seen over the last week. But experts caution that it's not clear if those savings will be passed along to consumers here at the pump. Pete Muntean, CNN, Cincinnati, Ohio.

ROSEMARY CHURCH, CNN INTERNATIONAL NEWS ANCHOR: A passenger on a small plane in Florida pulled off an amazing feat landing the flight with absolutely no experience. And you can see its shaky touchdown here, after the pilot became unable to fly, a passenger on the private flight contacted air traffic control for help. And here's part of their conversation.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I've got a serious situation here. My pilot is gone incoherent, and I have no idea how to fly the airplane but I'm maintaining at 9100.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: 333 Lima, Delta, Roger. What's your position?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I have no idea. I see the coast of Florida in front of me and I have no idea.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What is a situation where the pilot? UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He is incoherent. He's out.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: 3 Lima, Delta, Roger. Try to hold the wings level and see if you can start descending for me. Push forward on the controllers and descend at a very slow rate.


CHURCH: He was remarkably calm there. The U.S. Federal Aviation Authority said the pilot had a possible medical issue and is investigating the incident.

Well, still to come, the growing tensions between Taipei and Beijing are sparking concerns of a Taiwan supply of critical semiconductor chips. We will explain why just ahead.



JACQUELINE HOWARD, CNN HEALTH REPORTER: If you are craving red meat but don't want to actually eat it, those imitation burgers might hit the spot. You can find them in grocery stores, restaurants, and even drive-thrus. But are they healthy? Well, meatless burgers do contain protein, vitamins, and minerals. And many times, they are similar to the protein profile of the meat they imitate. They also contain Vitamin B12 and zinc. But beware, these imitation burgers are highly processed and usually contain high levels of sodium and saturated fat.

So, check your labels and eat them in moderation. They're not health food, even if they are tasty and environmentally friendly. Veggie burgers that are made of beans, vegetables, brown rice, or quinoa are the healthiest options of all. Choose one with seeds and whole grains and that burger is a meal, you can feel good about.


CHURCH: As tensions rise between China and Taiwan, top U.S. intelligence officials are now warning Taiwan will face an acute threat by the end of the decade. They told lawmakers China likely wants to avoid military conflict over Taiwan. But is still working to build a military that can take over the self-governing island. That assessment will only heighten concerns about what possible actions China could take. And how that might affect Taiwan's role in a key tech industry CNN's Will Ripley has more.


WILL RIPLEY, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voiceover): Taiwan's first line of defense from a Chinese invasion. Billion spent on missiles. New warships and submarines. An upgraded fleets of fire jets. Expanded training for reserve soldiers. All of it dwarfed by the Mainland's massive military.

China's defense budget, 17 times bigger than Taiwan's. Experts say the island's best defense, its biggest weapon against China is technology so small that you need a microscope. Super tiny, super-powerful semiconductors. This tiny tech powers products you probably use every day. Taiwan produces about 70 percent of the world's semiconductor chips. Most of them made by TSMC, Asia's most valuable company. Making chips for companies around the world like Apple and Intel. Experts warn any disruption to Taiwan's chip supply could paralyze global production. Impacting almost everyone.

J. MICHALE COLE, SENIOR FELLOW, GLOBAL TAIWAN INSTITUTE: People would like to say well Taiwan should be defended by virtue of it being a democracy. This is oftentimes too abstract if there is war or invasion in the Taiwan Strait. And immediately the price of computers will increase, your cellphone would become more expensive. It helps people make that self-serving but emotional connection with a society that otherwise would be abstract to them.

RIPLEY (voiceover): Russia's unprovoked invasion of Ukraine is raising questions about the future of Taiwan, a self-governing democracy. Claimed but never controlled by Beijing's communist rulers.

RIPLEY (on camera): What makes Taiwan different from Ukraine, right, is the economic leverage?

ROY LEE, CHUNG-HUA INSTITUTION FOR ECONOMIC RESEARCH: Well, it's much more relevant to the global economy than in Ukraine, that is true.

RIPLEY (voiceover): Even China relies on chips from Taiwan. More than 50 percent of the island's exports to the Mainland, semiconductors. China is Taiwan's top trading partner.

RIPLEY (on camera): So, what does it mean economically for Taiwan and China if there was some sort of conflict to breakout?

LEE: It will be disastrous. Not only for Taiwan, not only for China but also for the U.S. and UN, everybody.


RIPLEY (voiceover): Chinese President Xi Jinping has vowed to reunify with Taiwan at any cost. Taiwan's chip industry could make the cost of any invasion far too steep.


RIPLEY (on camera): The strategic role of Taiwan's chip industry is something that the Taiwanese government points out when people compare the situation in Ukraine to the threat facing Taiwan. They talk about scenarios like if there was a disruption in the global supply chain of semiconductors, people could be waiting over a year for things like a cellphone or even longer for a laptop.

And that might be the difference. That might be the motivator for these Western countries to jump in and do more for Taiwan than they're doing potentially for Ukraine. And that's certainly something that Beijing, Rosemary, is watching very carefully. U.S. intelligence experts say as they analyze the situation in Ukraine and draw their own comparisons to their ambitions to retake this island they claim as their own. Rosemary.

CHURCH: All right. Will Ripley, joining us live from Taipei, many thanks.

And thank you for your company. I'm Rosemary Church. For our international viewers, World Sport is next. And for those of you in North America, I'll be back with more news after a short break. Stay with us.

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CHURCH: Fugitive Casey White is back in Alabama following an 11-day manhunt. White was taken into custody in Indiana after a dramatic chase ending in the death of his accomplice, a corrections officer who police say, was the mastermind of the escape, and may have taken her own life to avoid capture. CNN's Omar Jimenez has the latest.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Where are they?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Right there. Here.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We need a medic here. He's shot as well.


OMAR JIMENEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voiceover): The final moments of a manhunt heard through police dispatch.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They're calling in 9-1-1.

JIMENEZ (voiceover): Only one shot was fired.

SHERIFF DAVE WEDDING, VANDERBURGH COUNTY, INDIANA: The female suspect shot herself. The male suspect gave up.

JIMENEZ (voiceover): An Indiana sheriff says numerous weapons, wigs, and $29,000 in cash were found inside the car.

WEDDING: There were at least four handguns, semiautomatics, 9mm. So, any one of these weapons could have been used to ambush our officers.

JIMENEZ (voiceover): Police chased the pair in Southern Indiana after their car was spotted in a motel parking lot by an Evansville police officer.

WEDDING: Members of the U.S. Task Force basically rammed the vehicle and pushed it into a ditch. Then, we later found out, had they not done that, the fugitive was going to engage in a shootout with law enforcement.

JIMENEZ (voiceover): The fugitive, Casey White, was driving, Vicky White was found in the car and died just hours later after law enforcement said she shot herself after the pursuit ended.

WEDDING: She was unconscious with a gunshot wound to her head and the male suspect gave up without incident.

JIMENEZ (voiceover): Tuesday, Casey White waived his extradition hearing in Indiana saying he wanted to go back to Alabama.

SHERIFF RICK SINGLETON, LAUDERDALE COUNTY, ALABAMA: When we bring him back, he will immediately go before the judge and be transported directly to the department of corrections. JIMENEZ (voiceover): The pair, who are not related, disappeared from an Alabama jail April 29th after Vicky White told colleagues she was taking the inmate, Casey White, to the courthouse for a mental health evaluation. They never got there. And no such evaluation had been scheduled. Authorities later found her patrol car abandoned in a shopping center parking lot.

SINGLETON: She arranged and purchased the getaway car. She sold her house. Got her hands on cash, you know, she went shopping and bought clothes for him. You know, she just -- she just obviously put the plan together.

JIMENEZ (voiceover): Then the pair fled in a pickup truck which was later spotted at a car wash in Indiana. Then transferred to a Cadillac which was spotted about a week later at a nearby motel.

JIMENEZ (on camera): Sheriff, do you have any idea what they were doing here for a week?

WEDDING: Well, I think he said that he was just trying to find a place to hide out and lay low. And they thought, you know, they'd driven long enough that they wanted to stop for a while and get their bearings straight and then figure out their next place to travel.

JIMENEZ (voiceover): The manager at the motel said he didn't recognize them when law enforcement showed them their photos.

PAUL SHAH, MOTEL 41 MANAGER: I guess they were looking and nobody was here under that name. So, we did not know whether they stayed at my hotel or not.

WEDDING: There's a lot of questions that won't be answered until we have a much deeper investigation.


JIMENEZ (on camera): Now, the sheriff told me, he believes Casey White and Vicky White couldn't initially get a room at that motel because of a lack of I.D. and that they paid a separate person to rent the room for them. But it's still unclear if that person even knew who they were at all. Because the sheriff says there are no other suspects in this case and no plans to charge anyone else as part of this investigation.

And while there are still some loose ends to tie up, at least on the Indiana side of things, the sheriff says he believes this case is solved. Omar Jimenez, CNN, Evansville, Indiana.

CHURCH: The U.S. firearm homicide rate in 2020 was the highest since 1994. That is according to data published on Tuesday by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control. The study found that between 2019 and 2020, the firearm homicide rate increased by 35 percent. That jump may be due in part to the coronavirus pandemic and its impact on the economy and society. Researchers found 79 percent of all U.S. homicides and 53 percent of all suicides in 2020 involved firearms.


They also found that during the pandemic, U.S. counties with the highest poverty level had higher firearm homicide and suicide rates than counties with the lowest poverty level.

The U.S. National Weather Service is warning conditions are just right to make wildfires even worse in the State of New Mexico. At least six fires are burning throughout the State right now, with low humidity and strong winds expected Wednesday, which could spread the blazes. The Calf Canyon-Hermits Peak fire is currently the largest and has burned more than 200,000 acres so far according to the governor.

Well, two bodies have been discovered in a lake outside of Las Vegas since the beginning of May. They weren't found because of great detective work. They were found because of climate change. Here is the story from Nick Watt.


NICK WATT, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voiceover): Lake mead is Shrinking. An omen of about uncertain future as climate change bites and as that water level lowers, grisly discoveries from a dark past. Just a short drive from sin city out here in the wilderness, this past Saturday, May 7th, human skeletal remains spotted at a popular recreation spot.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The second guess bringing your kids out here anymore.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think I want to leave.

WATT (voiceover): Less than a week earlier, Sunday, May 1st, another human body in a rusty barrel in the mud.

LR. RAY SPENCER, LAS VEGAS METROPOLITAN POLICE DEPT.: That is definitely and clearly a homicide investigation.

WATT (voiceover): Because in that decomposing body they found a gunshot wound.

SPENCER: We believe the incident occurred in the late 1970s to early '80s. And we're basing that upon footwear and clothing that the victim was found wearing. And we know that, that footwear and clothing was sold at Kmart in the late -- mid to late 1970s.

WATT (voiceover): Back in those days, Las Vegas was a gangster's paradise that inspired a cinematic staple. Remember "Casino"?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Meeting in the middle of the desert always made me nervous. It's a scary place.

WATT (voiceover): Dead bodies in trunks, shallow graves, cement boots.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're assuming mafia. We're assuming everything because it's Vegas.

WATT (voiceover): These two retired Vegas cops, now podcast hosts are offering $5,000 to any diver who finds another body.

DAVID KOHLMEIER, PODCASTER, THE PROBLEM SOLVER: I feel, you know, it would just be interesting to kind of close out some cases or identify some people that are missing persons.

WATT (on camera): So, the body in the barrel that was found was found right here. When it was dumped decades ago, it would have been under a lot of water. This would have been somewhere near the middle of Lake Mead. So, a safe, submerged secret not anymore. This is now the shoreline.

WATT (voiceover): And so, detectives from Vegas are now faced with a decades-old murder, a vast crime scene, and right now very little to go on beyond those '70s shoes.

SPENCER: In any homicide investigation, the first part of the investigation is obviously we have to identify the victim. And that's what we're trying to do at this point.


WATT (on camera): So, two bodies found in just over a week. The body in the barrel, now a homicide investigation. The skeleton found just this past weekend, detectives do not suspect foul play because, you know, accidents do happen out here on the lake. Drownings. It's huge. It's windy. The water is cold. It's deep or it used to be deep.

And police believe that more bodies will be found here at Lake Mead because the water is low and is only going to get lower. There's no end in sight for the megadrought that is causing this dramatic fall. You know, 20 years ago, maybe, the water would be just a few feet below where I'm standing now. Today, look at it. Nick Watt, CNN, Lake Mead, Nevada.

CHURCH: Tesla and SpaceX CEO, Elon Musk, says he will restore former U.S. President Donald Trump's banned Twitter account if his deal to acquire the company is completed. Take a listen.


ELON MUSK, CEO, TESLA & SPACEX: I do think that it was not correct to ban Donald Trump. I think that was a mistake. Because it alienated a large part of the country. And did not ultimately result in Donald Trump not having a voice.


CHURCH: Musk says he thinks Twitter should be very cautious with permanent bans. And banning Trump may have amplified his voice among the rightwing. The SpaceX chief has said his main goal is to bolster free speech on Twitter.

Well, after nearly 22 years, Apple has decided to retire the iPod. On Tuesday, the company announced it would discontinue production on the iPod touch, the only model still on shelves. The late Steve Jobs introduced the revolutionary music player in 2001 with a promise of holding up to one thousand CD quality songs.


Apple says the spirit of the iPod lives on in all its current products where music storage and streaming have become an essential part of software.

Celebrity Chef Mario Batali has been found not guilty of indecent assault after allegedly groping a woman at a Boston restaurant in 2017. The judge said Batali's conduct was not befitting of a public person of his stature, but added that the accuser had significant credibility issues and her motivation was financial gain. Natalie Tene had accused Batali of groping her during an impromptu selfie session, an allegation Batali denied.

And thank you so much for joining us this hour. I'm Rosemary Church. I'll be right back with more coverage after a short break. Do stay with us.