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Accused Mass Shooter Appears in Court, Faces Victims' Families; Record Diesel Prices, Shortages Loom as Growing Crisis; Oz, McCormick Locked in Tight PA GOP Senate Primary Race; Heard's Sister Testifies She Saw Depp Hit Amber. Aired 1:30-2p ET
Aired May 19, 2022 - 13:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANA CABRERA, CNN HOST: Late this morning, in Upstate New York, the white teenager accused of the racist shooting rampage in Buffalo shuffled into the court in shackles. Also in the courtroom, relatives of some of the 10 people he's accused of murdering in cold blood.
As he was let out, someone in that packed courtroom yelled at him.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hey, you're a coward.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CABRERA: CNN crime and justice correspondent, Shimon Prokupecz, in joining us from Buffalo.
Shimon, what more happened in court?
SHIMON PROKUPECZ, CNN CRIME & JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: Yes, it was a packed courtroom. Some of the people from the community and then some family members, and obviously filled with media when that outburst occurred as he was leaving the courtroom there.
We've learned that since this court proceeding, the district attorney's office announced that the alleged shooter was indicted by a grand jury in Buffalo. They are continuing to present evidence and continuing with that grand jury investigation.
So that is the new development that they have indicted him on some of the charges. And we know that he has one count of murder in the first degree that he's pleaded not guilty to. We certainly do expect to hear about other charges -- Ana?
CABRERA: OK, Shimon Prokupecz, thank you for that update.
Turning now to the economy. It's shaping up to be another bruising day on Wall Street. Right now, we know the Dow is down, I think a couple hundred points. Yes, down 212 points currently. That comes on the heels of yesterday's big loss. The worst trading day
in almost two years. Rising inflation, fears of a recession are fraying the nerves of investors.
And there's a new crisis looming larger by the day, it appears. Record-high diesel prices and shortages. That diesel is the life blood of modern-day America. It's central to everything from shipping to farming.
CNN's Vanessa Yurkevich is New York Harbor where the diesel storage tanks are almost dry.
DENTON CINQUEGRANA, CHIEF OIL ANALYST, OPIS: It could be gasoline, it could be diesel, it could be jet fuel. So, but that fuel is eventually going to be distributed. Right now, those tank levels are pretty low, though.
VANESSA YURKEVICH, CNN BUSINESS & POLITICS CORRESPONDENT: Is that concerning for you?
YURKEVICH (voice-over): These oil tanks in New York Harbor sit at alarmingly low levels not seen in 30 years, as demand outpaces supply.
CINQUEGRANA: Over there.
YURKEVICH: This is one of seven critical fuel points across the country, supplying our nation's gas stations, planes, trucks and homes. Critical to fueling the U.S. supply chain.
CINQUEGRANA: And really high diesel prices get passed on to the consumer. Whether that's for construction, whether that's for delivering groceries to the grocery store where you buy whatever it is you need.
YURKEVICH: U.S. diesel prices are already at record highs, with particular pain here in the Northeast. And now with tankers like these exporting much needed diesel to Europe, instead of supplying the U.S., prices are spiking higher.
But there are also fewer U.S. diesel refineries after years of closures to make up that difference in supply.
CINQUEGRANA: Right now, there is a global shortage of diesel. It's really tight.
YURKEVICH: Katie Child, owner of Berkshire Energy Depot in New Haven, Connecticut, is responsible for setting the price of diesel here.
(on camera): How does it feel to have to make the price higher every day? KATIE CHILD, OWNER, BERKSHIRE ENERGY DEPOT: You can see the pain in
their face when they come in and see the price and you just -- you apologize and say I'm sorry, there's nothing -- there's nothing I can do about it.
YURKEVICH (voice-over): She's a small business owner who services other small businesses.
CHILD: When prices are high, people shop around more. Well, if you know you'll save, you know, 10 cents down the road, you're going to go there.
YURKEVICH: Hudson Square Pharmacy, back in New York, is also facing the same problem. Everything from cereal to toilet paper is more expensive.
AL SOLMAN, OWNER, HUDSON SQUARE PHARMACY: We do pay a gas surcharge, too. Now that gas has gone up a lot, we notice on our bills , a $2, $3, $5 surcharge for gasoline.
YURKEVICH: That extra charge has to be recouped from somewhere.
SOLMAN: Once the prices become a little too much, then we just have to pass it on to the consumer.
YURKEVICH: But the consumer holds some power to turn the tide of high prices. A relentless buying and spending inflicted on a brittle supply chain are contributing to the high price of diesel.
CINQUEGRANA: And at some point, the consumer's going to say, all right, enough's enough. I got to -- I got to slow down because this is taking too much of a disposable income.
If we do have a pullback in economic activity, that might help, but kind of level off supplies, but for the time being, things are really tightening.
YURKEVICH: And another issue compounding this tight market is the U.S. used to import Russian oil right here into the New York Harbor. Of course, oil makes diesel.
But ever since the war in Ukraine, President Biden said we would no longer be bringing Russian energy sources into the United States. So that's pushing prices higher, Ana.
And New York Harbor is critical to the mid-Atlantic region. There's Newark airport across the river, rail lines, roadways.
And so when you don't have as much diesel coming in, you don't have as much going out, and the trickledown effect is that ends up with the consumers' bottom line being affected -- Ana?
CABRERA: It's not what we want to hear, but now we know at least why those high prices exist. Vanessa Yurkevich, thank you.
New race, old tricks. Pennsylvania election officials are still counting all the votes in a cliff-hanger contest for the Republican Senate nomination, but former President Trump is pushing his pick to just declare victory anyway.
CABRERA: Now to the nail biter in Pennsylvania, the Republican Senate primary. At this point, celebrity doctor, Mehmet Oz's lead is shrinking over former hedge fund executive, David McCormick.
And there are still thousands of votes left to count. Many of them mail-in ballots.
Cue Donald Trump and his 2020 playbook. The former president is now calling on Oz, whom he endorsed last month, to go ahead and declare victory while also casting doubt on the counting process in Pennsylvania.
CNN national correspondent, Athena Jones, is in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, which is still counting votes.
Where does the counting stand there?
ATHENA JONES, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, this is one of several counties still counting votes, Ana. But the counting -- this is where the counting stands. They managed to count all the misprinted ballots since Tuesday.
They only have 850 or so mail-in ballots, ballots that arrived by the end of the day on election day to be counted. We just saw the wheel them in. They will be scanning them in the next few minutes.
After that, we should show the sort of unofficial result. I say unofficial because there's a lot that has to happen for the results to be official.
And there are also going to be military and overseas ballots, as well as provisional ballots that, by law, are counted at a different time.
Provisional ballots, for instance, cannot begin to be counted until 9:00 a.m. on Friday. So that's tomorrow. There are 589 of those as of right now.
They have not updated any of the results today. They're going to do so once they scan the last 850 in.
But it's important to note, as of this morning, David McCormick was only a few hundred votes ahead of Mehmet Oz, Dr. Oz. And so fewer -- the lead, the gap is smaller than the 589 provisional ballots that still have to be counted on Friday.
There's still a few days before we'll know the final results in this county and in other counties. People are anxiously awaiting the results frustrated.
But the fact of the matter is those 22,000 misprinted ballots have all been dealt with. And we're going to have some kind of tally, giving us some kind of idea of what the breakdown is in the next hour or so -- Ana?
CABRERA: OK. And again, we're just talking about Lancaster County specifically in Pennsylvania. But there are, as you mentioned, other counties counting votes. We're going to keep our thumb on the pulse of all of it.
Thank you very much, Athena Jones, for that update from Lancaster, Pennsylvania.
Amber Heard's team today using members of Johnny Depp's former inner circle to testify against him. We'll have more on today's dramatic day in court next.
CABRERA: Issues with alcohol and drugs, erratic behavior and never knowing what to expect. That is how Johnny Depp's former business manager characterized the actor's behavior during his testimony today as part of Depp's defamation case against his ex-wife, Amber Heard.
And it comes on the heels of explosive testimony from a witness who said she saw Depp hit Heard.
And joining us is CNN legal analyst, Areva Martin.
Areva, let's listen first to what Amber Heard's sister said on the stand.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
WHITNEY HEARD HENRIQUEZ, SISTER OF AMBER HEARD: I'm facing Amber, he comes up behind me, strikes me in the back, kind of just somewhere over here, strikes me in the back. I hear Amber shout, don't hit my (EXPLETIVE DELETED) sister. She smacks him, lands one.
And then he grabs -- at that point, that's when Travis runs up the stairs after Amber landed one. And, but by that time, Johnny had already grabbed Amber by the hair with one hand and was whacking her repeatedly in the face with the other.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CABRERA: Again, another dramatic day of testimony. It's hard to hear that, to visualize what's happening there.
Explain why that testimony is significant in this trial.
AREVA MARTIN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: Yes, Ana, this testimony is so significant because this is the first witness that has testified in Amber Heard's case that corroborates her claim that she suffered physical abuse from Johnny Depp.
We have not heard other witnesses say that they were there. We have heard witnesses testify about seeing bruises and cuts and scars. One witness testified that he was on the phone when Johnny Depp, you know, grabbed the phone away from Amber and he could hear Amber making screams.
But yet, this is the first witness that says, look, I was there. I witnessed the physical violence.
And that's what this whole case is about. Did Johnny Depp physically, emotionally, or psychologically abuse Amber Heard? And the sister answers that question very plainly, very clearly, and says, yes, I witnessed my sister experience physical violence by Johnny Depp.
CABRERA: And we know Depp has denied these allegations, and that's why he is, you know, pursuing this defamation case.
His lawyers have used paparazzi pictures of Amber Heard taken shortly after alleged incidents of abuse to claim the abuse didn't happen. Watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED ATTORNEY: This is a picture from where you were in Russia for the "Lone Ranger" premier, correct?
AMBER HEARD, FORMER WIFE OF JOHNNY DEPP: That is correct.
UNIDENTIFIED ATTORNEY: And you have no visible injuries to your face, do you?
HEARD: None that you can see.
UNIDENTIFIED ATTORNEY: Even though Mr. Depp whacked you in the face so hard that your nose bled?
HEARD: He did.
UNIDENTIFIED ATTORNEY: While wearing chunky, big rings, right?
HEARD: That's correct.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CABRERA: Areva, is that strong evidence?
MARTIN: I don't think so, Ana. Look, anybody that knows a woman that has been physically abused in a relationship know that women figure out ways to wear make-up, to conceal the bruises.
We probably all work in work environments where women have come into work who have been beaten up by their husbands, their boyfriends, their partners, and they have on make-up and you can't see those bruises.
And we had a -- well, there was a witness in this trial, a make-up artist, that testified about how she would help conceal the bruises and scars that Amber Heard had that would have otherwise been visible.
I think there's been enough testimony to establish physical and emotional violence.
Even though the fans, the fans on social media, the fans that are gathered outside every morning that are cheering for Johnny Depp, are rooting for him and see him as the victim in this case, I'm not certain that the jurors are going to see it that way.
CABRERA: And since Depp is not the defendant, he is the plaintiff here, what exactly does he have to prove? And are you suggesting you think he's going to lose this case?
MARTIN: Well, we know he already lost one case, Ana. We know the case that was brought in the U.K. A judge, not a jury, but a judge determined that he was a wife beater. Essentially, didn't believe the claim that he was somehow the victim.
He is, as you said, the plaintiff in this case, so he has to prove that this op-ed piece that was written in the "Washington Post," one, that it was about him. Because we know it doesn't mention him by name.
So first, he has to establish that Amber Heard, in writing it, was talking about Johnny Depp.
And he has to prove that her allegations of being abused and being in an abusive relationship are false.
So, he's got to establish that this abuse that we're hearing about, not just from Amber but from her sister and hearing about from these other witnesses, that it didn't happen.
And that's a tall, tall order, given all of the testimony that we have heard not just from Amber's friends but from Johnny Depp's inner circle.
CABRERA: Areva Martin, it's great to hear your perspective on all of this. I appreciate your expertise and experience. Thank you.
MARTIN: Thanks, Ana.
CABRERA: That does it for us today. Thank you so much for being here. We're back tomorrow, same time, same place. I hope you'll join us again. Until then, you can always join me on Twitter, @AnaCabrera.
The news continues with Victor Blackwell right after this.