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New Day Saturday

Ukraine Reports Attacks In South After Sinking Of Russian Ship; Russian Forces Stepping Up Attacks Ahead Of Offensive; Explosions Reported Near Kyiv, Air Defenses Activated In Lviv; Texas Woman Fights To Bring Sister To U.S. From War-Torn Ukraine; Zelenskyy Sits Down For Interview With CNN's Jake Tapper; 21 States Suing To Stop Rollback Of Trump-Era Border Control Measure; Family Of Unarmed Black Man Killed By Police Demands Justice; Russian-Backed Radio Station Spreads Propaganda In Two United States Cities. Aired 7-8a ET

Aired April 16, 2022 - 07:00   ET



CHRISTI PAUL, CNN ANCHOR: Thank you for sharing your company with us this morning on this Saturday, April 16th. I'm Christi Paul in Atlanta.

ALEX MARQUARDT, CNN ANCHOR: And I'm Alex Marquardt in Washington, D.C., filling in this morning for Boris Sanchez. Christi, thanks so much for having me back.

PAUL: Good to have you, Alex.

MARQUARDT: All right. Well, it's a busy news morning and up first, we go straight to Ukraine with new developments in Russia's war on that country from multiple regions all across the country. In the southern part of Ukraine, officials are describing the situation as increasingly hostile.

PAUL: Yes, they say Russian forces were enraged by the loss of that Russian warship, Moskva. The U.S. says, Ukrainian missiles sank the ship. Officials say several settlements in Southern Ukraine have come under heavy fire now including from cluster bombs.

MARQUARDT: Russian forces are stepping up their attacks in the eastern part of the country. The Ukrainian military is saying that Russian President Vladimir Putin, his troops, his army, appears to be heavily shelling the area in the east, the Donbass region, ahead of a planned ground offensive. Now, new military aid, including almost a dozen helicopters from the U.S. is going to start arriving in Ukraine soon. That aid is including more heavy duty and sophisticated weaponry than previous shipments. The U.S. has now offered more than $3 billion in military aid to Ukraine.

PAUL: And Russia is formally protesting those U.S. shipments. In a diplomatic note, Russia warns of "unpredictable consequences" if the support continues. We have correspondents bringing us the very latest developments in Russia's war on Ukraine: White House Reporter, Jasmine Wright, is reporting on the new weapons headed for Ukraine from the U.S.; Matt Rivers, meanwhile, is live for us in Lviv. MARQUARDT: And Matt, let's start with you and Lviv. Ukrainian officials are claiming a success today that they shot down Russian cruise missiles. What more do we know?

MATT RIVERS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, well, we were woken up here in Lviv by an air raid siren that went off around 5:45 a.m. local time. We were under that warning for about an hour and 20 minutes or so. And it was after that, that we got word from Ukrainian officials as to why that air raid siren went off. It was because according to Ukrainian officials, several Russian warplanes that had taken off from neighboring Belarus from air bases in that country had launched what the Ukrainian say were four cruise missiles. They were heading to an unspecified target.

The Ukrainians did not say where; somewhere in the Lviv region. And they claim that their air defense systems here managed to track those missiles and take them out before they managed to reach their designated targets. Lviv, though, not the only region in in Ukraine targeted by Russian missiles overnight, one missile struck a southeastern district of Kyiv. The mayor is calling it the outskirts of Kyiv, and we know that at least one person was killed in that attack with other people injured and rescue crews still on the scene out there.

And this is something that Russia has said it is willing to do even as we wait for that offensive to begin in the eastern part of the countries even as we see shelling in the southern part of the country. We have heard from Russian generals saying that they will target what they call decision making centers in other parts of Ukraine, and that appears to be what we've been seeing both in the Lviv region and also in Kyiv overnight.

PAUL: So, I want to ask you about this horrifying report from Ukrainian national police. The bodies of 900 Ukrainian people discovered in the Kyiv region. What are you hearing about that, and what's next in that regard, Matt?

RIVERS: It's seemingly each day that goes by, we get a bigger picture of the brutality that Russian forces engaged in while they were occupying Northern Ukraine. This latest report coming from the head of Kyiv's regional police saying that more than 900 bodies, many of them civilians, showing signs of torture had been discovered by Ukrainian officials as they have managed to go into these towns that were held for weeks by Russian forces. These bodies are being forensically examined.

And during those examinations, these signs of tortures, gunshot wounds to the head, and the like, sometimes hands being bound, these are being discovered. That's information that's going to be passed on to the International Criminal Court, which opened up a formal investigation into what's going on in Ukraine back on March 2nd, but the body of evidence leading to Russian war crimes grows seemingly by the day.

PAUL: Yes, the chief prosecutor for the International Criminal Court actually calls Ukraine a crime scene at this point. Matt Rivers, we appreciate it so much. Thank you.

MARQUARDT: Now, a senior Pentagon official is telling CNN that the first part of a new shipment worth $800 million in military aid for Ukraine is going to start arriving in Ukraine within just a couple hours.


PAUL: Yes, CNN's Jasmine Wright is with us now from the White House. I know this package is a bit different than previous packages that we'll ship there, help us, help us understand what exactly the U.S. is sending to Ukraine.

JASMINE WRIGHT, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well, Christi and Alex, this package is meant to try to meet the needs, the evolving needs, of the Ukrainians as the fight is expected to shift in the Donbass region pretty shortly. And so, this new package, we know it is the first time that the U.S. has agreed to send this kind of weaponry. As you can see on the screen here, we had those Howitzers, those are going to be good for a long-ranged target as the new findings expect to happen on a kind of clear and open format battlefield, not something that we've seen earlier.

We saw kind of that city warfare, and of course, we had those new helicopters something that President Zelenskyy has pressured the U.S. to send him. Of course, we have Switch Blades, again, good for long range targets, long range targets, as well as more protective equipment. And this is really coming as the U.S. officials are preparing for the battle to change in terms of the terrain. Take a listen to Pentagon Spokesperson John Kirby really describe the thinking behind this when he was on with our own Jake Tapper just this week.


JOHN KIRBY, PENTAGON PRESS SECRETARY: We think that the terrain there, which is a little like Kansas, it's flat, it's open, like you described, Jake, will lend itself for the Russians to use mechanized forces in columns and open formations, artillery, short range, and even long-range fires. Those are the kinds of capabilities that you want to make sure that Ukrainians have as well. But we're deliberately tailoring this package to try to meet the needs of the fight they have today, because they are fighting in the Donbass today, and the fight that we think is coming in the days and weeks to come.


WRIGHT: So, there we heard from Kirby talking about the why, why they have really evolved this type of packaging they've sent but because let's be clear here, this, these types of weapons are something that just a few weeks ago, Biden official thought would be viewed as too escalatory by Russia to send, so they were kind of against it.

Now, of course, that has changed. And it appears that Russia has taken some sort of a notice, as we know that U.S. officials have told CNN that Russia formally protested the ongoing shipment of weaponry to Ukraine from the U.S., especially as the U.S. was up putting together that latest $800 million package since a formal notice, diplomatic note, to the State Department, basically warning of, of consequences if it should continue.

Now, officials don't know exactly if that new note means that their posture will change into something, but this is something that we, of course, are going to keep our eye on. Alex and Christi.

MARQUARDT: Still missing from that package are jets, which the Ukrainians have been asking for, and the U.S. has not yet been willing to give. Jasmine Wright, thank you so much for that very comprehensive report.

Now, let's dive into all this with two people who know this issue better than most: the Former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine, William Taylor; and Retired Brigadier General Mark Kimmitt, he served as the Assistant Secretary of State for Political and Military Affairs during the Bush Administration. Gentlemen, thank you so much for joining me this morning. General, I want to start with you, and the latest news that we're getting out of the Capitol Kyiv.

As you know, the capitol has been relatively quiet in recent days as the Russians have pulled back. Now, we are getting word of a bombing on the outskirts of the capital. Our team is reporting at least one person killed. Russia had warned that it would strike what they call decision-making centers in response to these accusations that Ukraine is now striking inside Russian territory. What do you make of this apparent attack on the Kyiv outskirts this morning?

GEN. MARK KIMMITT, FORMER ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF STATE FOR POLITICAL AND MILITARY AFFAIRS DURING THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION: Well, I really don't think it's much more than the, the Russians continuing to remind Kyiv that they've got the ability to reach out and touch them, that they should consider no area safe, and that they can send a missile and artillery round or a rocket to them at any time, but it doesn't seem to have any significant strategic consequence other than as a warning.

MARQUARDT: How about, General, the, this, the sinking of the Moskva, this Russian ship in the Black Sea? How much of is that going to have an impact on their naval operations along Ukraine's southern coast?

KIMMITT: Two things. I'd say it will have a significant moral uplift to the Ukrainian people. That's obviously the ship that the Snake Island defenders point their middle finger at. But I think it's important to also recognize that the United Kingdom lost six warships in the Falklands battle and that didn't stop there. Either their resolve or their ability to continue to prosecute the war against Falklands. I think it might put them on their back foot in terms of command and control for some period of time, but the Russians can bring other ships in there. Unless of course Turkey blocks the boss first straits as they have threatened.


MARQUARDT: Ambassador Taylor, we have now seen that Russia plans to escalate their efforts in the eastern part of the country after all these setbacks elsewhere, notably in the north and around Kyiv. And we've been talking about these concerns over the potential for President Putin to use nuclear weapons. Those concerns renewed in an interview between President Zelenskyy and our colleague, Jake Tapper, he said that the world should be prepared for Russia to use tactical nuclear weapons.

But at the same time, the CIA Director Bill Burns is saying that they're watching, of course, this very closely, but Russia has not taken steps in that direction. So, given where the fight is right now, and Russia has suffered these setbacks, how much do you fear Putin may escalate this and move towards those non-conventional chemical nuclear weapons?

WILLIAM TAYLOR, FORMER U.S. AMBASSADOR TO UKRAINE: So, Alex, there's no real military reason. As General Kimmitt can describe for using these kinds of weapons in, in Ukraine -- none. And Bill Burns is of course right, that there are no, no indications that the Russians are seriously making plans to use these. That said, President Zelenskyy is, of course, also right that you have to be prepared, you have to be ready for that kind of thing and there's preparation certainly being made. But I think that Bill Burns is right, we'll know, we'll know if they're going to be moving in that direction. And so far, we've not seen that.

MARQUARDT: General, we've been talking a lot about this new weapons shipment. The, the Biden administration touting that they've sent or at least, are sending more than $3 billion worth of weapons to Ukraine. When you look at this package, which includes Howitzers, MI- 17 helicopters, switchblade drones, and it's really a quite a long list. What do you make of that list?

KIMMITT: Well, three things. Number one, I think it's great that we're sending that equipment in if for no other reason than the combat replacements for what have already been destroyed in the fight.

Number two. It's a great, again, moral uplift, moral boost to both Ukraine's and the Western nations that they are doing something to help this fight.

Number three. I'm not too impressed with what I'm seeing on that long, long list. Good equipment there. Not a lot of equipment. 18 cannons, for example -- 18 Howitzers is merely one battalion of artillery. And we've got about 75 artillery battalions in our own army, and the Ukrainians have about 50. So, that's good to replace what they've already lost. But there are no silver bullets or magic bullets in that package that are going to make a significant difference.

MARQUARDT: General, is that because of the stockpiles that we have in this country, we just don't have enough to send them? Is that why they'd send, say, just 18 Howitzers.

KIMMITT: I think it's combination of the ability to get that equipment to them rapidly. We certainly have a lot in stockpiles, we have a lot in our reserve or National Guard units. So, it's not an issue of not having the equipment. But it really has more to do with shipment time, availability, and a lot of other factors that come into play. But it's not because we're short of any of that equipment.

MARQUARDT: Ambassador, we have heard quite a bit of frustration from President Zelenskyy and other top Ukrainian officials, that they're not getting enough, they're not getting these jets, because the Biden administration is afraid that that could be a provocation. So, what do you make of President Zelenskyy's frustration despite the fact that the Biden administration seems to be quite happy with the amount that it's, it's sending, and what do you make of their position on, on whether to give fighter jets to Ukraine?

TAYLOR: So, Alex, President Biden has indicated that he thinks what's going on in Ukraine is genocide. And if that's true, then there is no limit, other than maybe weapons of mass destruction. There's no limit to the kinds of equipment, the kinds of weapons that we should be providing. The only way to stop that genocide, and I agree with the president, it is genocide. The only way to stop it is to give the Ukrainians everything they need. Give them the weapons, give them the heavy weapons, give then the number of the Howitzers that General Kimmitt is talking about. Give them what they need to stop that genocide. That's the only way -- that's the moral thing to do. It's the strategic thing to do. It's what we should be doing.

MARQUARDT: General, do you agree? Is there a real difference between sending all of these MI-17 helicopters and then turning around and sending more jets?

KIMMITT: Well, look, Ambassador Taylor is also a combat veteran. He knows this business as well as anybody, but the decision made by the president that this operation to assist Ukraine would be done by, with, and through NATO means that to maintain consensus among the 30 nations within NATO, we oftentimes have to go to the lowest common denominator. And we're seeing that in the provision of weapons and support that we're providing to the Ukrainians.


While many of the hawkish nations like the United States want to give more, many of the frontline states, particularly those NATO nations on the border with Russia are a little bit concerned that too much would put them at risk. Would more equipment and better equipment have a battlefield consequence? Yes. But the diplomats on the ground are assuring us that the unintended consequences or the intended consequences of that action is beyond what they can stomach right now.

MARQUARDT: Well, this debate will certainly continue in the coming days and weeks, but we've got to leave it there. Ambassador Bill Taylor, Brigadier General Mark Kimmitt, thank you so much for joining us this morning.

PAUL: Do stay with us because we're talking about Ukraine and Texas, how it took an entire community to reunite two sisters and bring one of them to safety.

Also, in just a little more than a month, Trump era border restrictions are going to come to an end, why? More than a dozen states are stepping in to try to stop that. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)


PAUL: I want to tell you the story of a woman who really moved mountains to get her family out of war-torn Ukraine, and safely here to the United States. For weeks, her name is Nastya, Nastya Boyd, she's been fighting to reunite with her sister Katarina, who escaped Ukraine's capital of Kyiv only with her small child and just a few of their belongings, a little boy there. With the help of one U.S. congressman and a lot of local donations, they were able to make their way to Texas.

Well, Nastya Boyd is with us now. She stopped at nothing to bring her sister here, and you can see them both together. Nastya and Katarina, as I understand it, Katarina doesn't really speak English, so we're going to be speaking primarily to Nastya, if I understand that correctly, thank you. But Nastya, I cannot imagine what it was like for you, first of all, to watch what was happening, you know, the TV coverage when this started 52 days ago. Help me -- take us back to that moment that your sister, you saw her in the airport, I want to know what that was like for you.

NASTYA BOYD, BROUGHT HER SISTER FROM UKRAINE TO TEXAS: Yes, ma'am. So, with, they actually didn't, they were not in that -- whatever they were escaping, they were in a border. And I told them, I, I went with the workplace in a shelter until I was, were able to reach them to their destination and take them in Poland.

PAUL: OK. So, when you saw her, with her, with your nephew, come off that plane, bring us into that moment, what was going through your mind, what was going through your heart?

BOYD: It is just -- I was just happy to see them that they are near me. And they are now will be safe. And you know, just having part of family with, with me. And so, it's just -- you know, like it, it was -- I have most of family in Ukraine, and they just a part of, of my family. And so, when my nephew in horror ages, it was -- I was just happy to see them, and for them to be with me,

PAUL: Help us understand what her journey was like, I know that it was long. And as she went through Poland, she had to get to Germany, to get to Texas. How much of the fighting did they encounter?

BOYD: It was a lot, a lot of fighting. So, wherever they escaped from Ukraine, from Kyiv, to in, to come to Poland, it was they didn't want to leave, they all -- I kind of you know, told them that I will be there, I will come to Poland, I will take you with your child, like I will be every step with you. You will not be alone.

And so, when we find people to bring them to the border, that they don't need to wait too long, that (INAUDIBLE) took them to cross the border. She came to Poland and whatever I came and take them our journey, it was just -- they have today we're just trying to you know, figure out what are the next steps they will need to take. And so, she has a mother with a child she was just, it was really hard

to keep her calm to like, you know, just you have to trust God for next steps. We'll see what we need to do, and everything will be OK. But you know, when you're trying to take them to United States, they did not really have a paperwork that they needed.

And so, weeks and weeks we were trying to figure out what the next steps and how will the paperwork we can -- what we need to do, where we need to go. And with the tail like the weeks later with a (INAUDIBLE), his office going to be trust and to throw us what steps we need to take and they just will go to the embassy, and whatever you have try to apply, and that's what did.

PAUL: U.S. Congressman Randy Weber, just to re-clarify there, to secure the travel documents for her to get here. You said this was nothing short of a miracle.

BOYD: Yes.

PAUL: How was your, how is your nephew doing? I know they've only been here since Wednesday, but, but how is he doing because talk about what is really difficult for us as adults but for children, help us understand what he's what he's going through.


BOYD: He is, he's a very active boy, so energetic, keep him active. But we can see every day, he always asks, where is grandma, where is grandpa, where is, you know, everybody -- he's calling like, brothers and sisters, like, you know, that he used to see them every day. And he's still asking them sometimes, you know, and so we just shown to keep like the picture showing him, you know, just to keep them in, so he remembers them and video calls.

And as a kid, he still has a hard time, he sleeps sometimes a little bit harder and different places because we moved so much in Europe, we will always constantly moving. And when he came here, it also like a horse with kid to fit him because I know if he feels something, but we have struggles with, with taking on. Yes.

PAUL: Yes.

BOYD: But he's always nice.

PAUL: Well, Nastya, you've got a heck of a story to tell to get your sister here. It really highlights the meaning of family and what our priorities are. And Katarina, I want to say welcome to the U.S. Welcome to you and your son, and please take good care. Take good care of each other, and of yourselves.

BOYD: Thank you.

PAUL: Of course.

BOYD: Thank you.

PAUL: Nastya Boyd, we appreciate it.

MARQUARDT: What amazing story and I echo that welcome. Now, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy spoke with our colleague Jake Tapper about the human toll and the emotional toll that Russia's invasion is taking on he, as a person, as a president, as well as the people of Ukraine. He calls the horrors being uncovered now, a tragedy and a disaster. Take a listen.


JAKE TAPPER, CNN HOST: I'm sure you have seen the video of the Ukrainian mom, finding her son in a well.


TAPPER: And her sorrow, her crying, just is devastating to hear. And you have seen a lot of videos like that. What is it like for you, as the president of this country to see those videos to hear the crying of the moms?

ZELENSKYY: This is the scariest I've seen in my life in principle. I look at this first of all, as a father, it hurts so, so much. It's a tragedy. It's suffering. I won't be able to imagine the scale of suffering of these people, of this woman. It is a family's tragedy. It's a disaster. The dreams and the life you've just lost. We live for our kids. That's true.

Kids are the best; we were given by God and by family. It is a great pain for me. I can't watch it as a father, only because all you want after this is revenge and to kill. I have to watch as the president of the state where a lot of people have died and lost their loved ones, and there are millions of people who want to live, all of us want to fight.


MARQUARDT: Now, if you would like to safely and securely help the people of Ukraine who are in need of shelter, food, and water, you can go to And there, you'll find several ways that you can help the people of Ukraine. We'll be right back.



ALEX MARQUARDT, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPONDENT (on camera): Welcome back. Here is a look at some of the other top stories that we're following here this morning.

MARQUARDT (voice-over): Steve Bannon, the former adviser to former President Donald Trump is asking a federal judge to dismiss his criminal contempt of Congress case.

Bannon is scheduled to go to trial in July for not complying with a congressional subpoena from the January 6th committee, investigating the deadly insurrection. Steve Bannon is claiming that his subpoena was invalid because of the committee's makeup. And he says he was "targeted to send a message.

Bannon's lawyers will also be arguing that he was protecting the former president's executive privilege.

CHRISTI PAUL, CNN ANCHOR (on camera): A Georgia man has been arrested in connection with a shooting that killed three people. Jacob Christian Muse, faces three counts of malice murder in the shooting at the Lock Stock and Barrel Shooting Range in Grantville, Georgia. The victims were the range owner, his wife, and their 17-year-old grandson.

Authorities say the 21-year-old suspect also stole a cache of firearms from the range. Muse is currently being held at the local county jail.

MARQUARDT (on camera): And veteran stage and screen actress Liz Sheridan died on Friday morning.

MARQUARDT (voice-over): That's according to her manager. She had dozens of film credits, but she was best known for playing Jerry Seinfeld's mother Helen on the T.V. sitcom "Seinfeld", which, of course, ran for nine seasons.

Sheridan was also an author and a train dancer. She made her Broadway debut in 1971 in Frank Merriwell, and appeared in several more productions over the years.

Sheridan celebrated her 93rd birthday earlier this week. She survived by her daughter and son-in-law.

MARQUARDT (on camera): Now, more than a dozen states are challenging the Biden administration's plan to end Title 42, which is a Trump-era border control policy which stopped many migrants from seeking asylum in the United States.


PAUL (voice-over): Yes the restriction is set to end, May 23rd, and even some moderates worried that will lead to a massive migrant surge at the southern border.

CNN's Priscilla Alvarez has the story.

PRISCILLA ALVAREZ, CNN REPORTER (on camera): More than 20 states have filed a lawsuit against the Biden administration for its decision to end a public health authority known as Title 42.

That is an authority that has allowed border officials to turn migrants away at the U.S.-Mexico border over the course of the pandemic.

ALVAREZ (voice-over): But the CDC recently decided that, that is an authority that is going to end next month on May 23rd.

Now, the states allege in their lawsuit that, that is going to cause them harm. That the release of migrants can cause the states harm, and that the administration did not go through a notice and comment period before terminating the order and are, therefore, asking the court to block this from happening.

Now, the Biden administration has been contending with political fallout over the last few weeks for deciding to terminate this order and some of that fallout was included in the lawsuit, including remarks from Democratic senators like Senator Joe Manchin, who had called it, "a frightening decision".

ALVAREZ (on camera): Now, the White House and the Department of Homeland Security say they are putting preparations in place for what they anticipate is going to be an increase of migrants at the U.S.- Mexico border.

But now, all eyes are on the court to see how the next few weeks unfold and whether this decision does get blocked. Christi and Alex?

PAUL: Thank you so much.

Well, outrage is growing in Grand Rapids, Michigan after an officer fatally shot an unarmed black man, what a witness who saw the whole thing is saying about it.



MARQUARDT: The parents of Patrick Lyoya, an unarmed black man who was shot and killed last week during a traffic stop in Grand Rapids, Michigan --

MARQUARDT (voice-over): They are speaking out publicly for the first time since the video of that incident was released, and they say that the officer involved needs to be prosecuted.

PAUL: From more on this, I want to go to CNN's Omar Jimenez. He's been following this story for us.



WAYNE BUTLER, EYEWITNESS TO SHOOTING: But it's just a regular, regular neighborhood.

OMAR JIMENEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Wayne Butler has lived in this Grand Rapids, Michigan neighborhood for a couple of years. He says he knew things were about to go terribly wrong.

BUTLER: When they were right here wrestling --


BUTLER: That's when I knew it wasn't going to end well.

But I knew when the tussle began, because if you tussle with a White man with a gun, and you are Black in America, you end up dead.

JIMENEZ (on camera): And then you hear the shot.

BUTLER: And then, I hear the shot.

JIMENEZ (voice-over): On the morning of April 4th, he witnessed 26- year-old Patrick Lyoya get pulled over, run, go to the ground with a police officer who appeared to use his Taser multiple times.


JIMENEZ: As Lyoya put his hands on the Taser at points.

ERIC WINSTROM, CHIEF, GRAND RAPIDS POICE DEPARTMENT: But it looks like they each had a hand on the Taser for about 90 seconds. So they were struggling over the Taser from my view of the video.

JIMENEZ: And then, the last words, Lyoya may have ever heard.


BUTLER: Patrick made a mistake by getting out of the car. People want to point out what Patrick did. Yes. He made a mistake. And for his mistake, he paid with his life.

The officer made a mistake. He shot an unarmed man in the back of his head. Now, for his mistake, we have yet to see what that's going to be.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Stay in the car. Get in the car.

BUTLER: I hope if they're smart, they charged him with something.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Dude, I'm stopping you.

JIMENEZ: There is still no word on what penalties or charges this still unnamed officer might face, if any, because of an ongoing independent investigation being led by Michigan State Police.

All the while, some residents are frustrated.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Their trauma is deeper than the incident.

AMERICAN CROWD: Convict the killer cops.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Convict the killer cops.

JIMENEZ: Others --

AMERICAN CROWD: Convict the killer cops.

JIMENEZ: -- have taken to the streets.

Yet, the center of it all is a family trying to find a way forward without one of their own.

Steps away from where Leroy is final moments played out, there's a small memorial on the now quiet street.

But for Butler, it's no small memory at all. It resonates much deeper than what he saw play out now over a week ago.

BUTLER: Because I understand why he ran. I don't condone it. But I do understand how somebody can feel scared and not understand. I was 13 years old --


BUTLER: -- when I saw Rodney King in 1993.


BUTLER: So, what I'm telling you is this is not something that just started at George Floyd. My PTSD from police didn't start because they're bad people or this or that. It's because what I've seen of them, they're arresting black men, shooting black men -- and I don't mean it like that, but there's very rare times that I see them helping us.


JIMENEZ: Now, of course, there are countless examples of officers helping people, but that's not what he's going to remember. Moving forward, when the state investigation wraps up, it will be up to the Grand Rapids police department to determine if this officer faces any disciplinary action, and then up to the county prosecutor to determine if this officer will face any charges.

If it was up to the Lyoya family, they've told me they want to see this officer arrested, fired, and prosecuted. Alex, Christi?

MARQUARDT: Our thanks to Omar Jimenez there.

All right, coming up, it's a radio station hosted by and broadcast in the United States, but is backed by the Russian government. We're going to be taking a look at what they're saying on public airwaves how it's allowed to happen.


MARQUARDT: That's next.


MARQUARDT: The Russian state-backed T.V. channel R.T. America ended its operations last month. But as of today, a radio station which is also backed by the Russian state continues to parrot Kremlin talking points and fuel disinformation into American cities, including right here in Washington, D.C. Take a look.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sanctions are immoral.

MARQUARDT (voice-over): Driving around downtown Washington, if you tune the radio to 105.5 F.M., you land on --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You're listening to Radio Sputnik, telling the untold.

MARQUARDT: Radio Sputnik, a station funded by a Russian state media agency playing in the American capital on public airwaves.

MARQUARDT (on camera): Here in D.C., you can listen to Sputnik on both F.M. and A.M. radio. Their shows are hosted by Americans and they continue to broadcast even when other Russia-backed outlets have been taken off of platforms like YouTube and Facebook because of Russia's war in Ukraine.

MARQUARDT (voice-over): The host can often be heard parroting Kremlin talking points on Ukraine.

LEE STRANAHAN, AMERICAN WRITER WHO WORKS FOR SPUTNIK, A RUSSIAN GOVERNMENT-CONTROLLED NEWS AGENCY. I already knew that Ukrainian Nazis were real. And when Putin start talking about it, I was like, well, it's about time you talk about it.

MARQUARDT: Host Lee Stranahan calls himself pro-Russian. And while the world condemns Russia for the atrocities in Bucha, where Ukrainians were bound and executed, some Sputnik hosts aren't convinced.

DR. WILMER LEON, HOST, INSIDE THE ISSUES WITH WILMER LEON, SIRIUSXM SATELLITE RADIO: There is not much dispute about whether these atrocities actually occurred.

I think the question is who's responsible for doing it?

MARQUARDT: They claim to simply be offering a different viewpoint, asking questions, challenging the narrative, which often veers into seeing conspiracies, seeding doubt and distrust -- classic elements of disinformation.

The companies that put Sputnik on the air are forced to register as foreign agents with the Justice Department. Sputnik is required to tell listeners who backs them, a media group funded by the Russian government.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Rossiya Segodnya International Information Agency. Moscow, Russia.

MARQUARDT: None of the Sputnik hosts we reached out to would speak to us for this story. Except Scottie Nell Hughes, a former CNN contributor, who was a temporary fill-in host for the pro-Russia at Lee Stranahan.

MARQUARDT (on camera): We know that Russian state media is putting out lies about this conflict. And I say that as someone who was on the ground in Ukraine, so why should the United States tolerate having Russian state media on its public airwaves? SCOTTIE NELL HUGHES, FORMER CNN CONTRIBUTOR: Let the American people make that decision. Trust the American people to hear what they're saying, and make the decision for themselves whether or not they believe that, that is the truth happening.

MARQUARDT: After the 2016 presidential election, the U.S. intelligence community led by James Clapper put out a report accusing Sputnik of being part of Russia's interference efforts.

LT. GEN. JAMES CLAPPER, (RET.), CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: There is this grey area of First Amendment protection rights versus an insidious presence in our country that is really there to weaken and destroy our system. That's really what this is about, and it is state sponsored.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You know, I want you to know that any --

MARQUARDT: Sputnik programming is only broadcast in two U.S. cities -- Washington, D.C. and Kansas City, Missouri.

R.M. Broadcasting helps get Sputnik on the air. Its owner who lives in Florida, told us, he, "stands with Ukraine". "R.M. broadcasting is dedicated to the unfettered exchange of information and ideas," Arnold Ferolito said.

"That freedom of choice is the ultimate underpinning of our Republic."

It isn't the job of the Federal Communications Commission, the FCC to censor content, either, Commissioner Geoffrey Starks told us. Instead, it's to let listeners know where that content is coming from.

GEOFFREY STARKS, COMMISSIONER, FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION: The public must have transparency in order to be informed and make their own decisions about separating truth, from disinformation.

Well, the FCC has given its authority here, given listeners transparency, so that they can decide to change the dial.

MARQUARDT: Starks said he finds some of Sputnik's content deplorable. But on public airwaves, even if a station is backed by a country allegedly committing war crimes, they can in the U.S. continue to broadcast.


MARQUARDT: So, Christi, it really does come down to public airwaves versus private companies. Private companies can do whatever they want. So, you can't find R.T. or Sputnik apps in the Apple Store, for example.

But the FCC, as you heard there isn't going to censor what they're saying. So what -- you know, the most that the U.S. can do right now is forced them to register as foreign agents, the companies that are putting them on the air and reveal where this programming is backed by, and that's the capital of Russia, Moscow.

PAUL: Well, and that's important to point out. Great questions there too, by the way. Alex, thank you so much.


PAUL: You know, here in D.C., we're talking about winter. While we're talking about winter in the Midwest, severe storms in the southeast, we've got your Easter weekend forecast, which is a little dicey stay close.


PAUL: Well, severe storms, heavy rain, making it one messy Easter weekend. The Gulf Coast and other parts of the country, in fact, are bracing for multiple rounds of rough weather today and tomorrow.

MARQUARDT: For more, let's go straight to CNN's. Allison Chinchar. Allison, what are you seeing?

ALLISON CHINCHAR, CNN METEOROLOGIST (on camera): A lot of different systems, and that's what's going to cause a lot of the mess across so much of the country.

You've got two systems in the western portion of the country that's bringing rain and even snow to the higher elevations. We've also got rain in the Northeast today, including tonight. And then, severe storms from a separate system across the Gulf Coast region.

Now, here is the active storms right now. Very heavy rain moving through Atlanta, Birmingham as well. You've got a severe thunderstorm watch across portions of Arkansas. That's until 10:00 a.m. Central Time today.


CHINCHAR: But the storms will continue. This is the greatest area of risk for today. Stretching from Texas all the way over to the Carolinas, damaging winds, isolated tornados, and hail.