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Indiana A.G. Investigating Doctor Who Helped Child Get Abortion; Today: Buffalo Grocery Store Reopens After Racist Shooting; Father Pleads For Help In Search For Missing Ole Miss Student. Aired 7:30-8a ET

Aired July 15, 2022 - 07:30   ET




PETE MUNTEAN, CNN AVIATION AND TRANSPORTATION CORRESPONDENT (voice- over): -- but still expects airlines to do better.

PETE BUTTIGIEG, TRANSPORTATION SECRETARY: Look, we are counting on airlines to deliver for passengers and to be able to service the tickets that they sell.


MUNTEAN: United Airlines says Newark is bad because there is simply too many flights scheduled here for the airport to handle. In fact, United has scaled back its schedule here for the rest of the summer.

By the way, John, this issue goes beyond just Newark. Rounding out the top five, Reagan National, Raleigh, and Cleveland have the top cancellations since Memorial Day -- John.

JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: It is really tough. I mean, you have to take into account when you're planning a trip this summer the very real possibility that it gets canceled, much more than I can ever remember.

Pete Muntean, thank you so much for your reporting.

BRIANNA KEILAR, CNN ANCHOR: New this morning, we're learning that the physician who helped a 10-year-old rape victim from Ohio obtain an abortion in Indiana did, in fact, properly report the abortion and abuse as is required under Indiana law, according to documents obtained by CNN.

This comes after Indiana's Republican Attorney General Todd Rokita says he is investigating Dr. Caitlin Bernard, who he claims has a history of failing to report. Despite the newly-disclosed form reporting the abortion, Rokita says his investigation continues.

In a statement, Bernard's attorney said her client "took every appropriate and proper action in accordance with the law and both her medical and ethical training as a physician." And goes on to say, "We are considering legal action against those who have smeared my client, including Indiana Attorney General Todd Rokita."

Joining me now is Dr. Katie McHugh. She is an Indiana-based OB-GYN, and she is a board member with Physicians for Reproductive Health. Thank you so much for being with us this morning, Doctor.

In your opinion, why do you think the AG is investigating Dr. Bernard?

DR. KATIE MCHUGH, INDIANA-BASED OB-GYN, BOARD MEMBER WITH PHYSICIANS FOR REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH (via Webex by Cisco): Complicated legal requirements and intrusion into abortion care is not new and it is now based in any kind of attempts to keep patients safe. Instead, those kinds of intrusions are only aimed at trapping abortion providers and trapping the clinics that provide this compassionate and medically- supported care.

We are not strangers to this kind of investigation, although this is a newly public issue. We are -- we are glad for this public interest in (audio gap) needing us in a delicate time. And when legal and legislative interference interrupts that compassionate relationship, patient safety and patient well-being is never at the intent -- at the center of that intention.

KEILAR: What is the effect on other doctors of the AG investigating this doctor, even though she did this by the book?

MCHUGH: The intent is clearly to scare off other people from either seeking out abortion care or performing abortion services. But I will tell you that abortion providers are not easily scared. We are, again, accustomed to this interference. We are dedicated to providing compassionate, medically-supported, and evidence-based care.

We go into this profession knowing that it will not be easy but knowing that it is an act of love. That abortion is an act out of compassion. And that we are there to take care of people. And we're very careful always to follow the letter of the law because we know that we are intensely scrutinized. But we are there to take care of patients when they need us.

KEILAR: There was a moment yesterday on Capitol Hill where a Democratic congressman, Eric Swalwell, was questioning an anti- abortion -- a representative from a leading anti-abortion group. And this is a moment that a lot of people are now paying attention to. Here it is.


REP. ERIC SWALWELL (D-CA): Do you think a 10-year-old should choose to carry a baby?

CATHERINE GLENN FOSTER, PRESIDENT AND CEO, AMERICANS UNITED FOR LIFE: I believe it would probably impact her life. And so, therefore, it would fall under any exception and would not be an abortion.

SWALWELL: Wait -- it would not be an abortion if a 10-year-old, with her parents, made the decision not to have a baby that was a result of a rape? FOSTER: If a 10-year-old became pregnant as a result of rape and it was threatening her life, then that's not an abortion.


KEILAR: What did you think of that? And just respond to what you heard there.

MCHUGH: This is a great example of how some people want to pick and choose what is convenient for them and for their own definitions of morality. But what we know is that this kind of situation like we have seen out of Ohio where a child was victimized and needed medical care in the form of an abortion -- this situation is not unique. This was not the first time that it had happened and it will not be the last time.


It's an example of why abortion services cannot be restricted because we, as medical providers taking care of patients in these moments, need to have the freedom to offer a patient a full spectrum of care knowing that every patient's story is unique and valid.

So I took from that this is an example of picking and choosing what applies to different populations and is just not based in reality.

KEILAR: Is that an abortion if it's a 10-year-old? Is it an abortion if it's an ectopic pregnancy? I mean, explain that distinction and why that's important.

MCHUGH: From a medical perspective, ending a pregnancy either before it is able -- the baby is able to survive outside of the mother's uterus or for the purpose of ending the pregnancy, that is an abortion. This was a story about a 10-year-old who was raped and got her needed and so deserved abortion.

KEILAR: Dr. McHugh, thank you for being with us this morning.

MCHUGH: Thank you for having me.

KEILAR: So, happening today, the supermarket in Buffalo, New York where 10 innocent people were murdered in a racist massacre is going to reopen to the public.

BERMAN: CNN live at the southern border where the mass arrival of migrants is pushing resources to the brink.



BERMAN: Today, the Tops supermarket in Buffalo, where a gunman shot and killed 10 people in a racist massacre in May -- it reopens to the public.

CNN's Athena Jones is there. And Athena, I have to imagine this is going to be an emotional day there.


It is going to be an emotional day today, there was an emotional day yesterday, and there's a lot of emotional days ahead for the members of this community and the employees at this store.

This is, of course, opening two months after that racially motivated mass shooting that federal and state authorities say the evidence shows the shooter planned for years. They say this man targeted this particular Tops grocery store in this majority-Black community in order to try to kill as many Black people as possible.

But this store is an essential hub in this community. It's the only supermarket in about a 4-mile radius and it's a store the community fought for years to get to come to the community.

Tops officials say there was never a question of whether they were going to open but more, when and how. Well, they have not fully gutted and fully renovated the interior of this store. They've increased security measures. They've added a memorial to the 10 Black lives lost just inside the entrance to the store.

Just now, the employees finished up a prayer and some comments as they begin to go in. Of course, many of the members of the community we have spoken to, employees, and customers are nervous about returning to the store but they're glad that it is going to be reopening.

Here is more from two Tops employees we spoke with, Fragrance Harris Stanfield and Rose Marie Wysocki.


FRAGRANCE HARRIS STANFIELD, TOPS EMPLOYEE, SHOOTING SURVIVOR: Hate does not have a place here, and that anyone who tries to come and destroy this, they don't have a leg to stand on here. And no matter if all the justice that we deserve is given to us or not, we will still be able to move on from this. I just don't want it to be that we are expected to be so resilient that we forget that this happened or so resilient that we are forgotten about. But they should know that they can't break us.

ROSE MARIE WYSOCKI, TOPS MANAGER, SHOOTING SURVIVOR: We are Jefferson strong and we're not going to let that evil win. We're going to come back. We're going to reopen that store so that evil knows they can't win. They can't win over love, they can't win over strength, and they can't win over commitment -- and we're committed to this community.


JONES: And this shooter now faces, in addition to state charges, 27 federal charges, including 14 hate crimes charges. He is set to be arraigned in federal court on Monday -- John, Brianna.

BERMAN: All right, Athena Jones for us in Buffalo. Athena, thank you very much. KEILAR: This morning, migrants are arriving in droves across the southern border, including from countries as far as Venezuela and even Russia. And this is adding to the intense strain on the people and the resources who are in charge of processing them.

CNN's Priscilla Alvarez is live for us in Yuma, Arizona with more. Tell us what you're seeing there, Priscilla.

PRISCILLA ALVAREZ, CNN REPORTER: Brianna, this is the ongoing challenge for the Biden administration -- mass migration around the world landing here at the U.S.-Mexico border.

Now, as you can see behind me, there are hundreds of migrants who are lined up. They've been arriving in the overnight hours, many of them families with young children and also single adults.

I've spoken with some of them this morning and they say they're from Cuba, Colombia, and Peru. They are fleeing insecurity and political instability. And they all told me the same thing. They're looking for a better life in the United States.

Now, the sector chief tells me that they can arrest up to 1,000 people a day. And they have encountered more than 100 nationalities. That is a drastic shift from previous years where they usually say Mexicans and Central Americans.

Now, the public health authority that we've talked about before -- that Title 42 that allows officials to turn migrants away at the U.S.- Mexico border -- that's still in effect but it has its limits and it doesn't apply to everyone. And that is the reality that the Biden administration is contending with that poses a strain on their resources and one that we can see here in Yuma, Arizona -- Brianna.

KEILAR: All right, Priscilla. Thank you so much for showing us what is happening there. We appreciate it.

A father pleading for help this morning after an Ole Miss student goes missing. We have details on the investigation ahead.


BERMAN: So, the troubling story we have been following out of South Carolina. An attorney indicted for the murders of his own wife and son. The disturbing new twist in the case.


BERMAN: Developing this morning, a grand jury has indicted once- prominent South Carolina attorney Alex Murdaugh for the murder of his wife and son who were found shot to death last year at the family's home. It was Murdaugh, himself, who called the police to report finding the bodies and the case just got stranger and more disturbing from there.

CNN national correspondent Dianne Gallagher is in Charleston. And Dianne, just there have been so many twists and turns to this bizarre case.

DIANNE GALLAGHER, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, John. And, you know, look, Alex Murdaugh may have called 911 but these indictments handed down by the grand jury allege that he is also the one who pulled the triggers. And yes, I said triggers as in plural.


There are very few details in these indictments but what they do say is that Alex Murdaugh shot and killed his 52-year-old wife Maggie with a rifle and that he used a shotgun to shoot and kill his 22-year-old son Paul.

Now, Alex Murdaugh was once a prominent and very powerful lawyer here in the Low Country area until he was disbarred by the State Supreme Court a little earlier this week.

But his own attorneys quickly released a statement after those indictments came down. It said in part, quote, "Alex wants his family, friends, and everyone to know that he did not have anything to do with the murders of Maggie and Paul. He loved them more than anything in the world. It was very clear from day one that law enforcement and the attorney general prematurely concluded that Alex was responsible for the murder of his wife and son. But we know that Alex did not have any motive whatsoever to murder them."

His attorneys also said that they are going to file a motion to request a speedy trial and would like to get things underway once that's in motion in about 90 days or so. That's when we likely will learn more about what law enforcement has used to link him to their deaths.

Now, a source did tell CNN that there is evidence that has been collected, including things like blood splatter on his clothing from the night of the murders that would be associated with something like a rifle shot at a very close distance.

But look, he's already in jail. He's been there for months. He's on a $7 million bond that's associated with some of the roughly 80 different charges that are associated with claims that he defrauded some of his clients, John. And so, he is in jail. We're expecting a bond hearing on these murder indictments next week.

BERMAN: All right, Dianne Gallagher. Keep us posted. Thank you.

KEILAR: This morning, a father is pleading for help finding his 20- year-old son. Jimmie Lee was seen one week ago leaving an apartment complex near the University of Mississippi where he is a student, and he hasn't been seen since. Earlier this week, police found Lee's car.

CNN's Nadia Romero is following the latest developments -- Nadia.


And that is the latest we've heard from police is that they were able to recover his car. It is now with the Mississippi State Crime Lab.

And that is so important to this investigation because it means that investigators can now go through that car with a fine-tooth comb. They can look for fingerprints and DNA evidence that could tell them who might have else been in his car along with Jimmie Lee. They can also find receipts in there. Maybe they can put a timeline together of where he went from the last couple of days before he went missing.

So here's what we know. If you want to take a look at this map we'll see here his apartment complex. Campus Valley Apartments -- or Campus Walk Apartments is where he lived. He was last seen just one week ago on July 8 at about 6:00 in the morning and then his car was recovered on Monday at Molly Barr Trails. That's a different apartment complex. And police believe he may have been there to visit someone.

What we don't know is what happened in between. He could have went straight there, he could have made a stop, or maybe he wasn't driving his car at all by the time it ended up at that second apartment complex. That's what police are still trying to figure out -- that timeline.

And we know that his disappearance is spreading so quickly on social media. And it's the media attention that his father says he hopes will bring his son home. Take a listen.


JIMMIE LEE SR., FATHER OF MISSING STUDENT: I'm asking that if anyone knows anything or sees anything, say something. Call -- contact the law enforcement and just tell them what you know. This is my plea that you help find my child.


ROMERO: And police tell us they have conducted dozens of search warrants on physical and digital entities as well. We also know that they have been interviewing people and canvassing all around the campus community.

Right now, Brianna, there is a $1,000 Crime Stoppers reward for any information that could lead to finding him.

KEILAR: All right, Nadia. We know that you'll continue to track that story. Nadia Romero, thank you.

New overnight, Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin dealing a massive blow to the Biden economic agenda. We're going to get reaction from a fellow Democrat on the Hill.

BERMAN: And Donald Trump says his big decision is not if he is running in 2024, it's when. We'll speak to one of his former chiefs of staff.


[07:58:51] KEILAR: The San Francisco Giants honor a fallen hero killed in the line of duty.

CNN's Camila Bernal has the story.


CAMILA BERNAL, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): A traffic stop, a shootout, and selfless action.

JORGE ERNESTO ALVARADO, BROTHER OF JORGE DAVID ALVARADO: I think that my brother was the guardian angel at that moment and he stood in the way before maybe some harm could have been brought to someone else.

BERNAL (voice-over): It was February 25, just after 10:30 p.m. in Salinas, California. Thirty-year-old Officer Jorge David Alvarado was alone conducting a traffic stop. That officer was Officer Jorge Ernesto Alvarado's baby brother -- the one who followed his footsteps joining the Army and later becoming a police officer.

ALVARADO: Well, a man of honor. A man who did not shy away from danger.

BERNAL (voice-over): And a man who did not give up.

CHIEF ROBERTO FILICE, SALINAS POLICE DEPARTMENT: The suspect made up his mind. He was sure of what he wanted to do, so he stepped out and started shooting at the officer.

BERNAL (voice-over): According to the chief of police at the Salinas Police Department, Alvarado was shot multiple times.

FILICE: He stayed in the fight. He returned fire as he could, hit the suspect, and eventually it's what led us to finding the suspect.

BERNAL (voice-over): And just two weeks before his wedding, Alvarado died in the line of duty.

ALVARADO: I want him to be remembered.