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Police Holds News Conference After Sighting Of Prisoner Escapee; Biden Looks To Strengthen US-Vietnam Ties As G20 Wraps Up; Judge Refuses To Move Meadows' Case To Federal Court. Aired 3-4p ET

Aired September 10, 2023 - 15:00   ET


JAYATHI MURTHY, PRESIDENT, OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY: We have our fans. In fact, all of our fans all across Oregon and the country, there is anger and there's actually deep sadness because our communities are so tightly connected to the Beavers and to football, and I do want to say that our city of Corvallis is affected, too. There are communities all around Oregon State University and Washington State University that feel the brunt of a decision of this kind.

And so the fallouts are big and I think therefore, the decisions are big and serious ones and we're working as hard as possible to contain the damage from this decision.

WHITFIELD: Well, President Jayathi Murthy of Oregon State University, we will continue to watch. Keep us posted, and I appreciate you joining us today.

MURTHY: Thank you.


FREDRICKA WHITFIELD, CNN HOST: Hello again, everyone. Thank you so much for joining me. I'm Fredricka Whitfield.

This breaking news in the manhunt for escaped inmate, Danelo Cavalcante. Moments ago. Police holding a news conference in Chester County, Pennsylvania as the search enters it's now 11th day, and this comes as officials say Cavalcante is no longer in the Phoenixville area.

Even though he was spotted there last night after changing his appearance, police say the fugitive was seen driving this van, stolen from a nearby dairy farm. They say they recovered the van without Cavalcante inside.

CNN's Polo Sandoval joining us now with more from that press conference.

There was a wealth of information, but the bottom line is they still don't know where he is and they have expanded this search -- Polo.

POLO SANDOVAL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: And this, Fred, if you look at it will prove to be a significant setback for investigators as they have been searching for this 34 -year-old convicted killer for 11 days now as you mentioned, Fred, a wealth of information that we learned in the last hour from Pennsylvania state authorities, including that the keys to a dairy truck had been left in that vehicle.

It was parked at a farm just outside of that search perimeter, and that's what provided Cavalcante with that ability to actually get moving, to get mobile, and then eventually he was traced during the overnight hours to just outside of what was described by authorities as a work acquaintance's home, knocking on that door and captured on surveillance video, which is what is provided these videos of a clean- cut Cavalcante, wearing a hooded sweatshirt that we understand was actually obtained at that dairy farm as he was trying to get some assistance there.

And it wasn't until later according to authorities, that van was abandoned near East Mill Township, which is just west of that location. Authorities telling me earlier today that he literally ran out of gas, and so he ditched that vehicle and that rural part of Pennsylvania is now the general space or at least a general region that investigators believe that this convicted killer could be hiding.

But look, this is certainly going to be for those that have been closely following this investigation, this manhunt. A significant and disappointing development here as authorities have said time and time again, that they were fairly confident that they had contained him in a perimeter about just a short distance from where he originally escaped in late August.

And now, really the region in the country waking up to news that he has essentially escaped that area and that authorities at this point, don't know where he is. And as we heard from the Lieutenant Colonel George Bivens a little while ago, even very clear that there is no excuse for that happening.


LT. COL. GEORGE BIVENS, PENNSYLVANIA STATE POLICE DEPUTY COMMISSIONER OF OPERATIONS: I'm not going to make an excuse to you. I wish it had not happened.

Unfortunately, there are a lot of circumstances, there are a lot of issues associated with that property -- tunnels, very large drainage ditches, things that could not be secured. You couple that with weather, aviation being down for a night. There are a number of reasons. Again, no excuses.


SANDOVAL: Bivens also confirmed that Cavalcante's own sister is currently in the custody of Immigration and Customs Enforcement though he would not elaborate on why, but the question as to whether or not he is actually getting any potential assistance from either family or friends, Bivens saying that they are taking steps to try to eliminate that sort of assistance because his actions, Fred, the last few hours suggests to investigators that he is desperate.

He is quite literally knocking on doors of those that he knew, trying to get any help as they continue to try to track him down and criticism certainly mounting for this agency that has still been unable to track him down even with the support of hundreds of men and women in law enforcement.

WHITFIELD: All right, Polo Sandoval, keep us posted as you learn more. Thank you.

All right, also right now, President Biden is in Vietnam as the US seeks to strengthen ties with the country. The trip is part of a major international swing through the Indo Pacific and comes amid heightened tension with China.


Earlier today, the president met with Vietnam's general secretary and later spoke at a press conference where he pushed back against comments out of China that his trip seemed focused on containing China's influence in the region.

CNN White House correspondent, Jeremy Diamond is in Hanoi. Jeremy, what is the president hoping to accomplish overall on this trip?

JEREMY DIAMOND, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well, Fred, certainly President Biden came to New Delhi and then here to Hanoi, Vietnam with a key mission in mind, and that is to try and provide a counterweight to China's growing influence here in the region, as well as in the developing world.

We saw that on display at the G20 as President Biden sought to reach out to developing countries showing in his very presence at that summit, while Xi Jinping was absent, trying to make the case that the United States is the more reliable, more effective partner for the future.

And today in Hanoi, the president inking this new high level partnership with Vietnam becoming a strategic comprehensive strategic partner of Vietnam on par with countries like Russia and China as it relates to this country's foreign relations, a sign that like several other countries in the region, with whom President Biden has really sought to forge closer ties with in recent months, that there is growing concern about the way in which China throws around its military and economic heft in the region.

But even as the president took these steps, which he insisted are not solely aimed at China, and yet every expert you talk to says, this is all about China, the president tried to make clear that he is not seeking to contain that second largest economy in the world.


JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: What this trip was about, it was less about containing China. I don't want to contain China. I just want to make sure that we have a relationship with China that is on the up and up squared away.

But as I said, I'm not -- we're not looking to hurt China. Sincerely, we're all better off if China does well.

(END VIDEO CLIP) DIAMOND: And now the question is, Will President Biden actually be

able to meet with China's President Xi Jinping. There has been some speculation that the two could perhaps meet on the sidelines of the APEC Summit in November, which is set to be hosted by the United States in San Francisco. The president would not confirm that today.

And so far, the US is in treaties to the Chinese over the last several months, as we've seen, Cabinet secretary after Cabinet secretary dispatched to Beijing to try and deepen the relationship between the two countries, to reestablish military-to-military communications. So far, that has yet to bear any tangible fruit.

So we'll see if the president is able to be successful in that regard. So far, China appears to be resisting re-establishing relations along the same rules of the road that have existed now for decades. I did get a chance to shout a brief question to the president at the end as he was leaving the stage, and I asked him a question about human rights, and that's because Vietnam is one of the worst offenders of press freedom in the world as the third largest jailer of journalists and cracks down on political dissent.

And it is the latest example that we have seen of President Biden appearing to put strategic interests of the United States above human rights concerns, and when I asked the president about that, he said: "I don't put anything above human rights." And he insisted that he has raised human rights issues with every leader he's met, including here in Hanoi -- Fred.

WHITFIELD: All right, Jeremy Diamond, thanks so much.

All right, let's talk more about all of this. Let's bring in CNN political and national security analyst, David Sanger. He's also White House and national security correspondent for "The New York Times."

David, great to see you.


WHITFIELD: So how important in your view, was this trip for President Biden and his most recent comments this morning?

SANGER: Well, I think it was an important trip, because it's a big element to the effort to try hem in China in the Pacific, where the Chinese have made great inroads in areas that we were paying insufficient attention to, from the Solomon Islands to New Guinea, the Philippines, and Vietnam.

And what was interesting about this trip to my mind, Fred was, we have gone from early presidential trips to Vietnam. Bill Clinton did the first, I was on that. George Bush did one. And they were still trying to sort out the relationship after the Vietnam War.

You didn't hear any mention of the Vietnam War in the course of this. You only heard discussion of coming together as a strategic partner, even though Fred, the president knows because he read "The New York Times," my colleagues a few hours before it landed, that the Russians recently signed a secret deal to provide arms to Vietnam. So the Vietnamese are playing both sides.

WHITFIELD: And you know, and you talk about China's involvement and we just heard the president kind of reiterate his sentiment that he is not trying to contain China, if anything, he says you know, all of us are better off if China does well.


He is sending signals to China, as opposed to the whisperings, I guess sending communications for him, how beneficial might that be.

SANGER: So the Chinese see what the US is doing as containment or at least so they say they do and I can understand why it looks that way. Biden has been much more successful than any of his recent predecessors, including President Trump and President Obama, in cutting off exports to China that are useful for military purposes. But that are also critical to China's development in the most high tech industries.

That includes doing high end semiconductors, it includes the hardware you need and much of the software to do artificial intelligence, and to do quantum computing. So when the Chinese look at this, they say, well, you're not just trying to stop our military from developing, you're also trying to keep China from being a competitor in the biggest, most profitable industries of the future and they are not wrong in that.

WHITFIELD: This trip comes after, you know, a South Korea-Japan Summit at Camp David, a state dinner with the Indian prime minister and a White House visit from the president of the Philippines, all really within the last few months. What does this tell you about what the president's focus is, and why he feels like it's really important right now to reinforce these relationships in this part of the world.

SANGER: It's a full on push. And part of that reason -- part of the reason for that is that China has been pretty successful in Africa, Latin America, parts of Europe, getting their equipment in Huawei telecommunications, aid through the Belt and Road Initiative, and the United States has really sort of sat back and not had a plan to counter it.

I think it's to the credit of the Biden administration, that they have figured out that the way you do this is with alliances. And you start with the treaty allies, which include Korea, and Japan and the Philippines, and of course, Australia and New Zealand, but then you spread out to other potential partners, and that's what Vietnam was all about.

It's even part of the effort to woo India, which has clearly not sided with the United States and its allies on the invasion of Ukraine. Yes, the disappointment of this trip was that the statement on Ukraine that came out of the G20 meeting in India was very watered down and did not call for the Russians to get out of the country.

WHITFIELD: And why not do you suppose?

SANGER: Because Russia and China are both members of the G20 and these are consensus documents.

WHITFIELD: But they were not there.

SANGER: So you've seen -- they were not there, their presidents were not there, but their representatives were, and so they still had a vote.

So you know, missing an action here were, of course, Putin, Xi Jinping, President Zelenskyy, who usually shows up at big summits to try to attract more aid.

So that tells you the world is not quite as with us on the Ukraine agenda, as President Biden would like you to think.

WHITFIELD: David Sanger, thanks so much. Great to see you.

SANGER: Great to see you.

WHITFIELD: Still ahead, former White House chief-of-staff, Mark Meadows is appealing a federal judge's ruling rejecting his bid to move his Georgia election subversion case to the federal court. What that might mean for Trump's indictment, straight ahead.



WHITFIELD: Allies are on Donald Trump's legal team in Georgia now that a federal judge has rejected former White House chief-of-staff, Mark Meadows' bid to move his Georgia criminal case to federal court. The district judge found the allegations against Meadows on the election subversion charges were largely related to political activities and not to Meadows' role as Trump's chief-of-staff. Meadows has appealed the ruling.

And Trump's lawyers have signaled in recent days, they may also ask for his case to be moved to federal court. The Meadows' decision came on Friday the same day the full special grand jury report was released and that report provides new insight into the 2020 election subversion investigation in Georgia.

It shows the panel wanted to indict 39 people in the sprawling racketeering case including Senator Lindsey Graham, former Senators David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler, and former National Security adviser, Michael Flynn.

With me now to discuss all of this is Jeffrey Jacobovitz. He is a white collar criminal attorney and an adjunct law professor at American University and I'm also joined here in studio with Caren Morrison, she is a former federal prosecutor and an associate professor at Georgia State University's College of Law. Good to see both of you. Caren, since you're right here. Let's go to you first because, you

know, we are already hearing that Donald Trump's attorneys may try to follow suit hoping for a different outcome by trying to get his Georgia case moved to the federal level.


WHITFIELD: Might these be mirror, I guess, you know, request and a mirror outcome? Or will the circumstances be different?

MORRISON: I think the circumstances of anything are a little bit less favorable for Donald Trump in this case, I think Mark Meadows had probably the strongest case for removal to federal court, and obviously his case was not that strong since he lost.

So I think that the chances for all the other defendants who are trying to move their cases to federal court are looking a little grim right now.

WHITFIELD: Okay. However, Mark Meadows, he is appealing. And you just explained to me in break, I mean his appeal is on the federal level even though the case remains in a Georgia court. Sometimes it takes a long time for the federal appellate process to weigh in, how might that coincide with what the district attorney is hoping to be an October trial day?


MORRISON: Well, if there's no decision from the federal court of appeals in the 11th Circuit, then the court case in Georgia is going to continue. So I very much doubt that the Georgia judge is going to try all 19 defendants at once on October 23rd, but if that were to happen, then that would just start, you know, regardless of the federal appeal.

WHITFIELD: Okay, and Jeffrey, you know, with the judge's decision, you know, deny Mark Meadows' request to move his trial to federal court, do you expect that in any way, whatever plea Donald Trump makes, he will make some adjustments so that perhaps the judge may render a different decision?

JEFFREY JACOBOVITZ, WHITE COLLAR CRIMINAL ATTORNEY: Well, he would have to make an adjustment if he's looking to prevail on the motion, because he would probably and most likely have to testify since the defendants have the burden of proof on a removal motion and Mark Meadows testified and probably exposed himself to perjury or potential perjury or inconsistent statements, and he made some statements as well, which could cause trouble for Donald Trump.

So if Donald Trump does try to remove this matter, I think the only reason he would be doing it is for delay, and if he is trying to push his trial date back, and you know, he hasn't asked for the speedy trial, like others have, and so he would push his trial date back, and he's hoping to push it past the election.

WHITFIELD: And then Caren, we pivot to you know, the release of that special grand jury report showing the jurors had recommended indictments for 39 people. Fulton County district attorney Fani Willis ended up charging just 19 of those defendants including Trump. So what do you make of Fani Willis' decision? What she likely kept into consideration to do her own thing versus the grand jury's recommendation?

MORRISON: Right. I'm sure she looked at where she had the strongest evidence and which cases were most likely to be able to be proven beyond a reasonable doubt, because you can indict anybody you want so long as you have probable cause, which is just is it likely that they didn't, but you need a much higher standard of proof to be able to convict them. So she probably erred on the side of caution.

WHITFIELD: And Jeffrey, do you see that it's there's a great likelihood that perhaps those other 20 people while the grand jury recommended they be indicted, Fani Willis did not, that it's more likely that she might be calling them as witnesses.

JACOBOVITZ: Well, she can try to call them as witnesses. There is no statute of limitations issue here. We're not aware of immunity being issued to any of these defendants or potential defendants, and she can try to call them as witnesses in the underlying case, the first case with the grand jury.

However, it would be very unlikely that she would charge any of these parties in the future, and the only way she might have is if the case had been removed to federal court and then she would have, for example, with the senators issues related to the Speech and Debate Clause, which is really not a strong argument, but other arguments as well.

And so at this point, it's possible she may try to call them. It is possible, they will take the fifth because they still feel that they're exposed, and the statute hasn't run, and so it just adds to the complications of this procedure.

WHITFIELD: And when you say it would be unlikely that she would ever charge them, is that because she missed that opportunity? I mean, would there be any, you know, reason why she would reconsider and could possibly charge them?

JACOBOVITZ: Well, Fredricka, that's a very good question. But I think, at this point, she would not reconsider. And she didn't miss her opportunity. It's clear, she was very careful about who she was going to indict, and she was calculating, for example, the vote on Lindsey Graham was 13 to seven, which should have been enough to indict him.

However, she made the decision that maybe it might not be enough to convict him ultimately. It is not clear why, but in any event, I don't think these people are going to be indicted in the future, but it is hanging over their head.

WHITFIELD: Yes, and Caren, just because there have been some indictments, there has yet to be a trial, the investigation is still ongoing. So there are still vulnerabilities whether it involves those 20 people who did not get indicted or anyone else who may be in the orbit of all of these people.


WHITFIELD: What they say could still be used against them potentially, right?

MORRISON: Absolutely. Yes, there are all of the unindicted co- conspirators who presumably include some of the people mentioned in the special grand jury report. So, yes, it's not great time to be one of those people.


WHITFIELD: Not a great time at all.

All right, Caren Morrison, good to see you and Jeffrey Jacobovitz, thanks to both of you. Appreciate it.


WHITFIELD: All right, Nikki Haley, one of Donald Trump's challengers for the GOP presidential nomination appeared on CNN's "State of the Union" today. Jake Tapper pressed Haley on GOP Senator Tommy Tuberville's continued blockade of hundreds of military promotions over the Pentagon's abortion policies.


JAKE TAPPER, CNN ANCHOR: I know as a military spouse, you know, military spouses are really upset about this. Why is the Republican Party tolerating this?

NIKKI HALEY (R), 2024 PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: There's a couple of things here, Jake. I mean, let's speak hard truths, right? First of all, Department of Defense never should have done this. I disagree with it and I'll put an end to it as president. You have to go through Congress. We have --

TAPPER: You're talking about the reimbursement policy for travel for abortion?



HALEY: Yes, because you have to do these things through Congress. We have three branches of government for a reason. You can't slip something in there like that and think that Congress is not going to be upset.

So first, I'll put an end to that and you'll handle it through the proper channels. Secondly, we don't need to be using military families as political pawns. That's a mistake.

These -- the military members and families, they sacrifice enough. They don't need to be a pawn in Congress. But look at the political games that continue to play. Chuck Schumer could still get this done if he went through and listed each member and had Congress vote on each member. Right now --

TAPPER: But Ambassador, do you know what that would do?

HALEY: He is saying that --

TAPPER: I mean, do you really want to have -- I mean, the tradition is generally speaking, that the Senate just votes unanimous consent for 300 people to be promoted. Oh, you think the military is political now. You really want to have this US Senate voting on somebody being promoted to Major to Lieutenant Colonel to Colonel to Admiral?

I mean, every single person is going to have their social media posts scrubbed. You really want like in the US military, Bernie Sanders, Joe Manchin, like everybody is going to decide everybody's promotions? This is how we're going to do promotions from now on.

HALEY: Well, if you're going to talk about tradition, shouldn't Department of Defense do things the right way so we're never in this mess to start with? Let's -- I mean, let's call it like we see it.

The Department of Defense started this. I'm not saying Senator Tuberville is right in doing this because I don't want to use them as pawns. But if you love our military, if you are so adamant about it, then go and make Congress -- Republicans and Democrats have to go through person by person.

Do you honestly think they won't say, okay, this is ridiculous, let's put an end to it? They will, but show your true grit by going out there and saying, fine, if you're going to play the military for the pawns like this, let's go member by member. Let's make them pay the price. Let's make them do their job. Let's make them suffer so that they know what they're doing to these military families.

This isn't about making it convenient for Congress. This is about making sure you're doing right by members of the military. This is making sure you hold the Department of Defense accountable.

Let's call that what it is, Jake, because right now, everybody's saying, oh, but do you really want Congress doing this? You know, what I want Congress to do? It is their job. I want Congress to do their job. I want them to deal with inflation. I want them to deal with gas prices and groceries.

I want them to deal with the lack of transparency in schools. I want them to deal with the fact that yes, military members are being used as pawns and they need to make sure that these families don't suffer.

I want them to do their job. And the majority of Americans see that government is not working for the people. It's the people working for government and it's got to stop, including these political games that they play.

(END VIDEO CLIP) WHITFIELD: The Pentagon says there are a total of 319 senior military

officers currently being impacted by the ongoing nominations hold in the US Senate.

All right still to come, more than 2m000 people are confirmed dead in Morocco following a powerful earthquake. Rescue crews are still digging through the rubble for survivors. We'll have a live report from Marrakech. Stay with us.



WHITFIELD: All right, welcome back.

Another top story we're following today, the death toll in Morocco rising to more than 2,100 after a powerful earthquake hit late Friday.

Residents say entire villages were damaged leaving some rescuers unable to retrieve bodies from rubble. Emergency teams are now racing to find survivors in the rubble in these critical hours.

Morocco's King Mohammed VI ordering mosques nationwide to hold funeral prayers today for those who were killed.

I want to go now to CNN's Nada Bashir who is on the ground there in Marrakech. So Nada, what are the obstacles that rescuers, that first responders are up against?

NADA BASHIR, CNN REPORTER: Well, there are certainly a lot of challenges ahead for these rescue workers as you mentioned there. We're talking about areas that are particularly remote in the Atlas Mountains. These are the areas that were hardest hit by the earthquake, closest to the epicenter.

We're here in Marrakech, about 45 miles away, and you can see behind me part of this city has sustained damage as a result of the earthquake.

But when we look at the images coming out from the villages across the foothills of the Atlas Mountains, it is clear that devastation has been most severe in those areas. Take a look.


BASHIR (voice over): Hurt and mourning, still grappling with the aftermath of Friday's devastating 6.8 magnitude earthquake.


In Marrakech, families line the streets at night, too afraid to sleep inside as aftershocks still ripple through the country.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): All our houses are cracked. They could fall down at any moment and that's why we can't go back. All of these people are afraid to come back home. BASHIR (on camera): This city lies around 45 miles away from the

epicenter, but even here in Marrakech, the impact, the extent of the damage caused by Friday's earthquake is evident. You can see this building damaged behind me, parts of the Old City, a UNESCO World Heritage site have also sustained damage.

But in other parts of the country, the devastation has been far more severe.

BASHIR (voice over): Along the foothills of the Atlas Mountains, a path of destruction stretching miles.

(PEOPLE speaking in foreign language.)

BASHIR (voice over): Rescuers in a race against time, desperate to find survivors. The more they dig, the higher the death toll, adding to the more than 2,000 lives lost in what has become the deadliest quake to strike the country in decades.

Pushing through the grief, many are queuing up here in Marrakech to donate blood. It is an act of solidarity. And there has been an outpouring of support from the international community with offers of aid from countries including the US, Japan, France, and the UAE.

But the challenges ahead for Morocco are immense and the recovery effort may well take years.


BASHIR (on camera): And of course, while the search and rescue effort is still a key priority here, there is a real focus on the humanitarian relief effort as well and you can't see it, but just in front of me here, in the square, crowds of people are already gathering for yet another night. They are planning, many of them with small children, to sleep outside. Many of them are afraid that there could be another aftershock, potentially another earthquake, they're afraid that their homes simply aren't safe, that the structures could give way.

So there is still a real sense of fear and apprehension here in Marrakech and that is really mirrored across the areas impacted in Morocco -- Fredricka.

WHITFIELD: Yes, still so incredibly tenuous and dangerous.

Nada Bashir, thank you.

Still ahead, Coco Gauff stealing the show at the US Open, winning her first grand slam title after an incredible comeback, how she pulled it all off, straight ahead.

And who will take home the men's title, one of the world's greatest is vying for a record 24th Grand Slam title, just one match and one incredible player stands in his way. We'll go live to the US Open, next.



WHITFIELD: All right, congratulations are pouring in today for 19- year-old American tennis star, Coco Gauff who captured her first career Grand Slam at the US Open last night.


WHITFIELD: What a match that was. The entire stadium there erupting with cheers when Gauff rallied up from a set down to defeat Belarusian, Aryna Sabalenka.

Joining us right now, CNN sports correspondent, Carolyn Manno who got the chance to speak to Coco after her emotional win, and she is just electric, isn't she?

CAROLYN MANNO, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: She is absolutely electric and wise beyond her years and still so humble. I mean, the pressure that she has been under for years now to win this grand slam has been immense, and there have been a lot of people, Fred, who have criticized her over the last couple of years wondering will she or won't she realize all the potential that she has, and this was her moment to prove that she will.

I mean, to see her get so emotional last night and to thank the crowd in New York, and to go be with her parents and give them this long embrace. That's a moment that we don't normally get to see between Coco and her parents. They are famously stoic when they are in her box. They don't get over excited.

Sometimes they even go inside when things get tense, like her dad did last night, but all of the emotions came flooding out when she was finally able to realize this moment that she's been dreaming of since she was such a little girl.

And when we spoke last night, she told me what that moment was like between her and her family.


COCO GAUFF, TENNIS PLAYER: It was the best moment ever. I know they are -- I felt so loved and they always love me obviously, but you know, when you're just you know, embracing them -- I'm not really like a touchy person to be honest. So my parents are always like, I don't hug them enough. But I mean, I gave them a big embrace today.

MANNO: We were really touched like a lot of people with what you posted your Instagram right after your 19th birthday. The throwback of you of a little girl here during fan week. What would you tell that little girl about tonight?

GAUFF: Just keep dreaming. Your dreams are possible. And don't let, you know, people put out your fire. You had a lot of hope and dreams then and it still is within you now.


MANNO: And Fred, Coco mentioned using that criticism as fuel and I said are you going to continue to do that? Or are you going to take confidence from this win and kind of leave all of that to the side? And she said no, I'm going to continue to do that.

But you can tell that there's a lot of relief here, too. It's not her top emotions. She was so laid back, so happy, taking all of this in last night. She was here for hours after this match wrapped up, said she wanted a Diet Coke and maybe some pizza at one point, true to teenage form.

But you just have this kind of she realized now, I think it's so important for her moving forward and her confidence level, it was an incredible night to remember for everybody that was fortunate enough to be here.

WHITFIELD: Oh, that is so true. And for those of us who were watching it from afar, because you know, it was such an inspiring, I mean, so many moments of inspiration, and to cap it off that way was just so beautiful. And yes, she is very poised, very mature beyond her years.

Okay, now, there's more to come not, necessarily from Coco tonight, but instead we're talking about the men's number two ranked player in the world, Novak Djokovic. He is going after a record extending 24th title.


What can we expect from this Medvedev and Djokovic match?

MANNO: Well, a lot of long exhaustive exciting rallies between the two. I mean, you go from an American sensation, a teenager in Coco Gauff to the man who has been the best in the game for quite some time now, Novak Djokovic, taking on the likes of Daniil Medvedev, who has proven that he can beat Novak, he did it here at the US Open.

And so this is going to be, Fred, about who can outlast the other mentally and physically, who can frustrate the other. They are very familiar with one another's style of play and they love to get into these duels at the baseline.

So I think true tennis fans will have such an appreciation for what Novak Djokovic is trying to do winning that 24th Grand Slam. A lot of people would put it in Novak's favor. You certainly wouldn't be wrong to do that. But don't count out, Daniil Medvedev. He is very tricky on the hard court. He proved that against Carlos Alcaraz, and I think this is going to be a battle, no question about it.

WHITFIELD: A battle indeed. We'll all be watching that one, too. This is pretty exhausting. This whole US Open thing has just worn me out and I haven't even been playing it. I'm just a spectator. But up all night, et cetera. Whew.

All right, it is coming to an end. Carolyn Manno, thank you so much. All right, coming up next, six school districts in California moving

to require that parents be notified when their child ask to be recognized by a different gender identity or pronoun. The latest on the policy debate, straight ahead.



WHITFIELD: Some California parents are at odds with their school district over a controversial gender identity policy. After several heated school board meetings, the Chino Valley Unified School District passed a rule requiring schools to notify parents if their child requests to change their gender identity or pronouns. A judge temporarily blocked that decision.

Let us bring in CNN's Camila Bernal.

Camila, you spoke to a few parents about this and what are they telling you?

CAMILA BERNAL, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Fred, look those that are for this policy, they say that this is about family values and parental rights and the ones that oppose the policy, well, they say they too believe in family values and communication, but they're worried about children who may not be in a safe place to come out or to transition. They say those are the children that will be most affected by this policy.


MISTY STARTUP, PARENT: My oldest, Payton, and then Madison.

CAMILA BERNAL, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voiceover): Six children, all have attended the Chino Valley Unified School District in Southern California.

STARTUP: How's school?



BERNAL (voice over): Mom, Misty Startup now goes to every single school board meeting. Many getting extremely contentious and even violent. The issue at the center of the fight, a transgender notification policy requiring schools to notify parents if children change their gender identification or pronouns.

STARTUP: If we're keeping this from parents, what else is going to be kept from us.

BERNAL (voice over): Those fighting for this policy say school employees in California have helped children socially transition without telling the parents. They became the first in the state to pass a policy at the local level. UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I'm a yes. The motion passes.

BERNAL (voice over): But parents and advocates on the other side of the issue say the communication already existed.

Kristi Hirst is a mom of three, a former teacher, and the co-founder of a nonprofit helping parents fight against issues like the transgender notification policy.

KRISTI HIRST, PARENT: It assumes that teachers are trying to keep secrets from parents, which is not true; and it promotes an atmospheric distrust between the school and families.

BERNAL (voice over): After Chino, five other school districts in California have followed suit. To stop the trend, the California attorney general filed a lawsuit against Chino Valley, and this week, a judge agreed, issuing a temporary restraining order.

ROB BONTA, ATTORNEY GENERAL, CALIFORNIA: You cannot target, single out, discriminate against, and violate the privacy rights of students. That's exactly what this policy does.

BERNAL (voice over): The Chino Valley School Board president, Sonja Shaw says they were disappointed, but not surprised by the ruling.

SONJA SHAW, PRESIDENT, CHINO VALLEY SCHOOL BOARD: We know that we're not going to win it here in California because who is elected and who is appointed here in California. But we know at the federal government level, we can win this.

BERNAL (voice over): Both sides say this is not just happening in California.

BONTA: There have been over 200 laws in over 40 states introduced to strip away and hurt and discriminate against the LGBTQ community and to take away their rights.




BERNAL (voice over): And as the legal fights play out in California and across the country, an agreement between the parents seems unlikely.

HIRST: I think the middle ground already existed and they have been manipulated to think it didn't.

STARTUP: As long as this is an issue and they're trying to break up families, I'm in this fight. We don't co-parent with the government.


BERNAL (on camera): And there is a crisis hotline and I was told that after a lot of these meetings, a lot of these times when the policies passed, there were parents, students calling and saying that they were afraid and had anxiety over this, and some were even referred to mental health counseling.


On the other hand, you have parents who are pushing for this policy that will likely come up in many other school boards, not just here in California, but across the country.

WHITFIELD: All right, Camila Bernal, stay on top of it. Thanks so much.

All right, a quick programming note, follow 9/11 activist, Jon Stewart and John Feal as they fight Congress to ensure that thousands of terminally ill first responders get the health care they deserve.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Like one lady said to me, you have to forget about 9/11. I've got to take 32 pills a day. I never took pills in my life until I got sick.

So I take a cocktail like Jon said. I put them in a basically a shelf now, and I just do a quick hit, you know? I take four Xanax. This, I take four of these. I've got my heart, PTSD, lungs, the cough, the stomach, the gastro reflux. I take five for the heart.

This is Ambien to help me sleep. If I turn that -- the aspirin, GABA- Pro, Plavix. Six for the PTSD. Of course, there are all the asthma medications with the inhaler and nebulizer.

I use this when nobody is around, because it's embarrassing.


WHITFIELD: "No Responders Left Behind" airs tonight at nine right here on CNN.

And back to our top story, you are looking at pictures near Ludwig's corner Pennsylvania where police now believe the dangerous escaped inmate may be. Police just releasing brand new details on the manhunt. The latest straight ahead.