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New Day Sunday

California Police Arrested Suspected Serial Killer; Candidates Work To Energize Supporters Ahead Of Elections; Obama To Campaign For Democrats In Georgia, Michigan; Biden To Focus On Abortion Rights In Speech Three Weeks Before Election Day; Biden: Case Made By January 6 Committee "Fairly Overwhelming"; Sanders Warns Democrats: Don't Focus Only On Abortion; Obama Says He'll Campaign For Democrats In Michigan, Georgia and Wisconsin; Warnock, Walker Square Off In First, Only Senate Debate; NYC To Open Center For Migrants By End Of The Month; Bakeries Struggle As The Cost Of Basic Ingredients Soar. Aired 6-7a

Aired October 16, 2022 - 06:00   ET



AMARA WALKER, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning, everyone. And welcome to your NEW DAY. I'm Amara Walker.

BORIS SANCHEZ, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning, Amara. I'm Boris Sanchez.

This morning an alleged serial killer is off the street.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The suspect's reign of terror in our community has come to an end.


SANCHEZ: How police were able to track him down as they say he was on the hunt for his next victim.

WALKER: And New York City has seen a surge of migrants in recent months. How the city is handling the influx and how they're hoping the federal government can help.

SANCHEZ: Plus, inflation burning through the profits of some small businesses. We'll tell you how bakeries are trying to stay afloat amid the rising costs of some key ingredients.

WALKER: And why the Arctic has suddenly become one of the hottest pieces of real estate on the planet and why one senator is urging the U.S. to act fast. NEW DAY starts now.

It is Sunday, October 16th. Thank you so much for waking up with us. Boris, good to see you.

SANCHEZ: Great to see you, Amara. It is a new week and we're grateful that you're starting it with us.

We begin this morning with relief for some neighbors in Stockton, California, where police have arrested a man they say was on a mission to kill.

WALKER: Six men were killed and a woman injured in a series of shootings over the past year that left Stockton on edge. Investigators believe this arrest prevented what would have been another killing. CNN's Camila Bernal has the story.

CAMILA BERNAL, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Amara, Boris, we have been following this story for days, and now authorities say they believe they have their suspect. This is 43-year-old Wesley Brownlee of Stockton, and what authorities are saying is that they were able to arrest this man thanks to two things. The first being the tips and the help from the community, and the second being old-fashioned police work.

They say they were able to zero in on one possible suspect thanks to all of these tips, and they began following this man trying to figure out exactly where he was going, trying to see if there were any patterns to all of this. And the chief of police in Stockton saying this man was on a mission to kill.

Saturday at around 2:00 in the morning they were following him. They say he left his house, he was in dark areas, going to parks, stopping, looking around, then moving again, and they decided to arrest him. They say that he was wearing all black, that he had a mask around his neck, and also that they found a gun. He was carrying a gun. Here is now what the mayor of Stockton, Kevin Lincoln, is saying about all of this.


KEVIN LINCOLN, STOCKTON, CALIFORNIA MAYOR: We will use every resource at our disposal to make sure the people of our city are protected, it feels safe, and that no parent has to worry about taking their kids to a park, that nobody would have to worry about looking over their shoulder when they go to the grocery store, and that our unhoused population here in the city of Stockton will be able to rest a little bit easier tonight, as we take the next steps towards getting them help and healing in their life.


BERNAL: And authorities say they will announce the charges on Tuesday when this man is first set to appear in court. In terms of the motive, the chief of police still saying they do not know and do not have a motive. Amara, Boris.

WALKER: Camila Bernal, thank you. And joining me now is law enforcement analyst and former NYPD police detective Tom Verni. Good morning to you, Tom. This is such a chilling story, especially when you hear the police chief say -- quote -- "the suspect was on a mission to kill," that he was out hunting. I'm just curious to know how investigators are so confident that they prevented another killing.

TOM VERNI, LAW ENFORCEMENT CONSULTANT: Good morning, Amara and Boris. Yes, I mean, this is the stuff that TV movies are made of, right? How chilling would this be to live in a neighborhood where you find out that numerous people are being stalked basically and killed for some unknown reason.


And the reporting that was just mentioned, this was a case that was brought together by, literally, old-school police tactics, right? In today's day where we have, you know, all sorts of electronic means and DNA and all those testings, which may also play a part in this case at some point, it's the, you know, piecing together of critical pieces of information, getting feedback from the community, which in many, many ways in all parts of the country, that's how crimes are solved is when, you know, something happens, the police put information out there, they put out basically a help, you know, lifeline, and then the community responds. And then they put together some sort of a plan, you know, or an operation to try to reign this person or persons in.

So, yes, this was a really bizarre and frightening case. I'm sure, you know, the first thing they want to check is to also make sure this person was working alone. There's no evidence to suggest otherwise, thankfully. But once we, you know, now have zeroed down on the suspect then now they're going to start to piece together all these other pieces of information. And --

WALKER: And speaking of piecing the stuff together, I mean, how much was it relying on the tips that were coming in? Because when you look at the surveillance video all you see is the back of the suspect. You don't see a face.

VERNI: Yes. Based on the pattern -- and that's another part that they put together as well, the pattern of behavior. You know, serial killers, especially ones like this, don't -- certainly don't want to be caught. They want to be able to continue for whatever bizarre reason that might be and so they -- but eventually they do develop certain patterns of behavior, right?

So based on the tips that are given by the public, days that people see someone like this, you know, the way that they're acting, what they're wearing and so forth, these little crumbs of information, by themselves don't necessarily mean all that much, right? But when you start to connect the dots it starts to add up to areas that they can concentrate on.

Descriptions of people that they're given that they can look at based on what they look like or based on what they're wearing. And that's exactly what happened here. And thank goodness, because who knows -- and the other part of this, too, quite frankly, how long has this been going on? Did this just start in, you know, a year and a half ago in April of 2021, as the reporting was suggesting, or has this been going on even longer? What made this person (INAUDIBLE)? But that's what they're going to be looking for.

WALKER: Right. I wonder if they will connect him to other shootings or murders. We're going to have to leave it there, but it's a really fascinating story. And thank goodness they were able to get him when they did. Tom Verni, thank you very much. VERNI: Yes. Thank you.

SANCHEZ: So midterm elections are a little bit over three weeks away, and all over the map, candidates are hitting the campaign trail trying to energize their supporters.

WALKER: In Pennsylvania Lieutenant Governor John Fetterman received an energetic welcome at a rally in Wallingford. Fetterman is running against Mehmet Oz for the U.S. Senate. Also in the high stakes U.S. Senate race in Georgia, Herschel Walker was back on the campaign trail yesterday after his debate with Senator Raphael Warnock. Georgia is one of the key races that could determine who gets control of Congress.

And Democrats are bringing out the heavy hitters as they try to hang on to control. Former President Barack Obama plans to campaign in Georgia and Michigan in the final weeks before Election Day.

Also first on CNN, President Joe Biden plans to keep the focus on abortion rights in a speech just three weeks before Election Day.

SANCHEZ: Yes. The president speaks at a Democratic National Committee event on Tuesday, and he's hoping the abortion rights issue will galvanize voters ahead of the midterm elections. CNN White House reporter Jasmine Wright joins us now live. Jasmine, the president obviously focusing on abortion rights, but in poll after poll, voters out there say that the economy remains the most important issue to them.

JASMINE WRIGHT, CNN WHITE HOUSE REPORTER: Yes. Boris, the economy is something the president is going to have to confront when he heads into his busy week, focus a large part on campaigning for the midterm elections, trying to make the case for Democrats. We know that he just finished that four-day swing on the west coast. This week will be dedicated to the east coast. As you said on Tuesday, he will have the speech on abortion, on Thursday we can expect him to do a finance event for John Fetterman who we were just talking about in Pennsylvania.

Of course, for abortion, that is a major thing. This will be probably his fourth or fifth major speech since Roe versus Wade was overturned in the summer. But, of course, the White House and officials are hoping that it brings voters to the table really trying to vote for Democrats, vote their way. Now, of course, as you said, that stands in a bit of contrast to what we're seeing when it comes to the polls.


Of course, the recent CNN poll found that the economy remains a central focus for voters with 90 percent of registered voters saying it was extremely or very important for their vote. Fewer than 72 percent as you can see on the screen here listed abortion.

Now asked about the U.S. dollar yesterday, the president said that he wasn't concerned about it, but he said he was concerned about other countries and their economic policies. But, of course, it's not exactly clear how that statement jives with how Americans are feeling, especially when it comes to their wallet. Boris.

SANCHEZ: And, Jasmine, President Biden spoke out about January 6th recently. What did he say?

WRIGHT: Yes. Well, these were the most definitive comments about the January 6th trial and hearing that the president has had to say since now, really his administration has said that they wanted to stay away from really talking about it thoroughly, trying not to seem like they were interfering with the Department of Justice as they often say his predecessor did. But take a listen to what the president had to say specifically about how he thinks the case was made.


JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The testimony and the video are actually devastating. And I've been going out of my way not to comment, we'll see what happens. But it's -- I think it's been devastating. I mean, the case has been made, it seems to me, fairly overwhelming.


WRIGHT: So President Biden declined to comment any further, and he added that he had not spoken to Attorney General Merrick Garland about this matter at all. Boris, Amara.

SANCHEZ: Jasmine Wright reporting live, traveling with the president in Wilmington, Delaware, where the trains are running bright and early this morning. Thanks so much, Jasmine.

Let's get some insight now with CNN political analyst and historian at Princeton University, Julian Zelizer. Julian, appreciate you sharing part of your Sunday morning with us.

Let's start where Jasmine picked up, the conversation about President Biden focusing on the issue of abortion. Some feel that Democrats are ignoring the economy. Bernie Sanders actually issued a warning to Democrats who he believes are leaning too heavily into the issue of abortion. Here is part of something he wrote in "The Guardian" -- quote -- "It would be political malpractice for Democrats to ignore the state of economy and allow Republican lies and distortions to go unanswered."

Julian, how do Democrats run on the economy, when even the best assessments point to a very murky outlook?

JULIAN ZELIZER, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, I think it's a tough issue. I think there's good reason politically to focus on other kinds of problems, including reproductive rights, but I don't think Senator Sanders is wrong. The economy is out there, the conditions are not great, and voters want to hear from Democrats what are they going to do, how will they make it better. And they also need to hear Democratic voters, a defense in terms of what's the connection between President Biden's policies and inflation or where other factors are at work. So not talking about it doesn't make it better, but there's also room to try to bring in other issues to soften the blow. SANCHEZ: It is a challenge, though, to try to run on, for example, the Inflation Reduction Act, when there are indicators in the economy that the expectation is inflation is going to go up.

ZELIZER: You know, that's right. Some economists will argue that you have to look at much broader factors as inflationary pressures all over the world, the war in Ukraine is also affecting gas prices, supply chains and more, but it's hard. You know, politics in midterms often comes down to a few sentences. So I think that's a big reason why President Biden and other Democrats are trying to look at other issues that could galvanize, mobilize, and shift attention away from that problem toward other ones.

SANCHEZ: Democrats, we should note, are bringing out some heavy hitters. Former President Barack Obama announcing he's traveling to Michigan, Wisconsin and Georgia this month to campaign for Democratic candidates. How do you think these stops are going to boost Democrats?

ZELIZER: Well, I think it could help. You know, a turnout is the key to elections especially in our day and age, when you're talking about narrow majorities and pockets of voters that you're trying so sway, rather than mass numbers of voters.

And so, I think the former President Obama could be very effective. He's still very well liked. He's respected. And he is an image of the Democratic Party that's very favorable. So I think it could have an effect.


SANCHEZ: And one of those states he is going to visit, Georgia, obviously, the site of that heated debate on Friday night between Senator Raphael Warnock and Georgia football star Herschel Walker. How do you anticipate that race is going to shake out in the closing weeks?

ZELIZER: We don't know. I mean, the polls are not giving clear indications. Clearly Walker is struggling. This is a case where one of the Trump aligned candidates is causing the Republicans more problems than the Republicans thought they were going to have in some of these races. Warnock is a very strong candidate, but we'll see.

SANCHEZ: Notably, something that came up in this debate has come up in other debates and in other conversations, specifically with Republican candidates, and that's Trump's false claims about the 2020 election. We saw in this debate Herschel Walker sort of recant his previous statements about Trump's lies. Others have faced those questions like Blake Masters and Kari Lake in Arizona. How do you think those claims are going to impact Republicans' chances?

ZELIZER: I think they are hurting Republicans' chances, meaning midterms don't go well for the president's party and the economy is not good, and yet Democrats have a very competitive race, not just in Georgia but in other parts of the country. And I think part of what's happening is the presence of the former president, Donald Trump, combined with the way election denialism is almost galvanizing issue for many Republicans, is hurting Republicans with some independent voters.

It's giving Democrats a chance to do better than should be expected. It's also just a long-term story the parties embrace of this issue and the implications going into 2024.

SANCHEZ: A quick plug for our viewers, Kari Lake, the Arizona gubernatorial candidate expected on "STATE OF THE UNION" on CNN later this morning. So don't miss that. Julian Zelizer, always appreciate the time, sir.

ZELIZER: Thanks for having me.

SANCHEZ: Of course.

WALKER: Still ahead on NEW DAY inflation's toll on small businesses. How the rising costs of things like eggs, grain and butter are putting the squeeze on America's bakeries.

Police are working to identify the bodies of four men pulled from a river in Oklahoma. What we know about the case and what led officer there in the first place.

Plus, why some resident in Jackson, Mississippi, say they are getting hit with water bills totaling hundreds, even thousands of dollars for water they couldn't use.



SANCHEZ: Officials in New York City are taking steps to deal with an influx of migrants, including the opening of a new migrant center by the end of this month.

WALKER: This is intended to be a temporary solution to a larger problem. CNN's Gloria Pazmino has a look at the facility.

GLORIA PAZMINO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Amara, Boris, Randall's Island is the place that New York City has resorted to in order to put up these tent structures, and we have been watching the progress unfold over the last several days. We were here earlier this week watching the tents first go up, now we can see that there's been a lot of work done and we saw several workers putting in the cots and beds and pillows and blankets that migrants who come through here will be able to have when they arrive. There's also several mobile bathrooms and showers and laundry units that are here on the site.

Now, this place is designed to only house 500 single adults, and it's supposed to be a temporary solution for what the mayor has described as a crisis. Over the last several months the city has processed 19,400 migrants through its Department of Homeless Services and the mayor says that the city is running out of space. So this is supposed to be a temporary solution. It will house 500 single adults for what is supposed to be only a couple days.

Now when it comes to families, they will be housed at a hotel in midtown, up to 200 families will be housed there, as they get connected to services and legal resources and figure out what they're doing as they go through this asylum process. Some of them will stay here in New York. Others may want to go elsewhere.

But, as I said, the mayor has described this as a crisis. He has asked for federal help and there's no clear indication that that's going to happen so far. He says he expects the numbers to continue to increase and migrants to continue to come into the city, so this is just one of the temporary solutions that the city has come up with as they continue to grapple with the influx of migrants into the city. Amara and Boris.

WALKER: Gloria, thank you. As grocery bills climb on everything from bread to meat, businesses are really struggling to keep pace with the spiking price of ingredients.

SANCHEZ: And as Karin Caifa reports, the cost of commodities is hitting some businesses harder than others.


KARIN CAIFA, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Wondering how the price of bread has skyrocketed? Teresa Velazquez can break it down.

TERESA VELAZQUEZ, BAKERY OWNER: A flour right now is a big one probably because I have to put in a big order for, I don't know, probably about 20 or so bags to get me through the weekend.

CAIFA: Baguettes, breads, biscuits and lots of cupcakes have been the family business for more than two decades. And when prepping goods for her two Washington, D.C. shops, Baked and Wired and A Baked Joint, there's a few things she can't work without.

VELAZQUEZ: It's amazing what four ingredients can make such a vast difference of everything else.

CAIFA: Sugar, eggs, butter and flour, are the foundation of almost every recipe. The rise in price for those items impacting big bakeries that stock supermarket shelves, but especially smaller operators like Velazquez and her family.


VELAZQUEZ: When I sit down to order I go through three vendors to figure out, where am I going to get the best price on eggs? Where am I going to get the best price on butter?

CAIFA: Along with other complexities of the post-pandemic economy the war in Ukraine has put pressure on grain prices and driven up flour costs. Bird flu diminished supply in the wholesale egg market this year. And butter inventories tight after western heat waves curbed cows' dairy production.

Since October 2019 this same time of year pre-pandemic, Velazquez says the price she pays for butter has increased 43 percent, eggs up 63 percent, flour up 86 percent. VELAZQUEZ: I went from pre-pandemic paying almost $15.00 for a 50 pound bag of flour and now I'm up to $20.00 for a bag of flour.

CAIFA: For the latest government numbers consumer food prices rose 11.2 percent over last September. Bakery products including bread and cereals are up 16.2 percent in the same period. Breaking down her costs it makes sense that a baker like Velazquez would raise prices but she hesitates to put too much on customers.

VELAZQUEZ: There's only so much someone is going to pay for a sandwich or a baguette or a croissant, you know, so it's a balance.

CAIFA: So Velazquez keeps crunching the numbers --

VELAZQUEZ: I sit here on my order days and I just play this game all the time.

CAIFA: -- hoping key markets smooth out soon. In Washington, I'm Karin Caifa.


SANCHEZ: Thanks to Karin Caifa for that report. A mystery is unfolding in Oklahoma after four bodies were pulled from a river, as four men in that area are missing. Police still say that these are two separate cases. We're going to explain why when we come back.



WALKER: Officials in Oklahoma are working to identify the human remains of four adult males who were found submerged in a river outside the city of Okmulgee.

SANCHEZ: Yes. Investigators are trying to confirm whether these are the remains of four close friends who went missing a week ago after reportedly going for a bike ride. CNN's Camila Bernal has more.

CAMILA BERNAL, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voiceover): Amara, Boris, we are still waiting for the medical examiner's office in Tulsa to officially confirm the identities of these bodies that were found in the river. And according to authorities, they began those autopsies on Saturday at around 8:30 in the morning, but it was going to be a difficult process, which is why it is taking some time.

Now, authorities were led to that river because someone reported seeing something suspicious in the rivers. So, when officers went there, they were able to find and recover these bodies. Here is how the police chief described it.


JOE PRENTICE, CHIEF, OKMULGEE POLICE: All four bodies were submerged in water for what appears to be an extended period of time. And therefore, identification will be a little bit of a challenge. I don't know that the four bodies that we've recovered are those men. I do suspect foul play in the discovery of the four bodies, what led to them being there.

BERNAL: And until we get official confirmation from the medical examiner's office, authorities treating this as two separate cases the cases. The bodies that were found in the river, and then the other case which is the four missing. These were four friends all between the ages of 29 and 32. They were hanging out together Sunday night. They all had their bikes. Bikes that by the way have not been found. And at least two of them had cell phones.

So, police officers track the cell phone data. That led them to two different junkyards. We know that at least one of them was about five miles away from the river where these bodies were found. So, officers were not planning on searching the area near the river. This was not in the path of that cell phone data. But look, whether they treat it as one case, two cases, or they eventually connect the dots, there are still a lot of questions. We want to know what happened on Sunday night. How did these bodies end up in the river? Is there other people involved in all of this?

So, of course, questions that we continue to ask authorities. Amara, Boris?

WALKER: Yes, it's quite a mystery. Camilla, thank you.

Well, first they were hit with flooding, then their water turned brown. Well, now, months later, some residents of Jackson Mississippi still don't have drinkable water and they're being hit with very high water bills. That's next. And be sure to catch an all-new episode of Stanley Tucci: Searching for Italy. Stanley explores the rugged terrain and unique delicacies of Sardinia that's tonight at 9:00 on CNN



SANCHEZ: Here are some other top stories we've been following this morning. Russian officials say that no civilians were killed Saturday when two gunman opened fire on recruits a Russian military training ground killing at least 11 people in what the Kremlin is calling an act of terrorism.

And in southern Ukraine, military officials say no one was injured after two schools were destroyed this morning by Russian missile attacks in the Zaporizhzhia region. Shelling was also reported in eastern Ukraine. At least four people there hospitalized following a Russian missile strike on a city administration building and Donetsk.

Starting tomorrow, people with mild to moderate hearing loss will be able to buy hearing aids over the counter directly from stores and online. The move is aimed at bringing more hearing aid manufacturers to the market and getting existing ones to develop lower-price devices. The FDA has estimated that consumers could save about $2,800 a pair because of these changes. WALKER: This morning, residents in Jackson Mississippi say they are facing extremely high water bills and they're pleading with city officials to offer some relief for those who say they just can't afford it. The increase in water charges come after historic flooding in late August left the majority-black city without clean drinking water for nearly two months. It was such a dire situation, it was extremely hot as well, and even now some Jackson residents are paying more for water that is still coming out of their faucets with a brown tinge color and with low pressure.

Joining me now is CNN Senior Race and Equality Writer Nicquel Terry Ellis who spoke to one Jackson resident who received a $4,000. water bill. Nicquel. Good morning. I mean, that is outrageous. That's higher than most people's mortgages. Why is their water bill so high? And I mean, is it -- are we talking about a one month water bill? Is this a bill that's been overdue for some time? Please explain.


NICQUEL TERRY ELLIS, CNN SENIOR RACE AND EQUALITY WRITER: Yes, Amara. So, Virginia Evans tells me that she received her water bill September 9 for nearly $4,000 and she was completely shocked. She -- the bill actually is for the period in which the city of Jackson was under a boil water advisory in which the water, you couldn't drink it, you couldn't take a bath in it, you couldn't take a shower in it. It was not safe.

And Virginia has reached out to the city for answers. She's hoping to get some help with paying the bill and she is still waiting to hear back. And she's not the only resident who was in his boat right now. I spoke with several residents who say that their bills have come in in September and October extremely high and they are just frustrated. And just hoping for answers and hoping to get some help.

Keep in mind. Jackson is a predominantly Black city and about a quarter of the residents live in poverty. You can only imagine how hard that must be for someone who's already struggling to make ends meet to get a $4,000 water bill.

WALKER: And the anxiety that they must be dealing with, right? I mean -- and when I was on the ground there a few months ago, I remember hearing from so many different people saying that they were still getting outrageous bills, you know, in the high hundreds, not $4,000. That's just doesn't sound right. Have we reached out to the city? What are they saying and how are they justifying these kinds of bills?

ELLIS: Well, the city honestly hasn't said much, Amara. We did reach out last week. They released a statement saying that they recently had installed some new water meters. And by their assessment, the meters were reading accurately and that the bills were coming in accurate as far as they know. And they did not answer our question about whether it was fair for them to still bill these residents for such a high amount when for so long, the water was unsafe to use.

One Councilman did say that the city had had some shortcomings in his water billing system in the past. And he's encouraging residents to contest their bill with the water billing department or maybe get a payment plan to get the bill paid.

WALKER: Yes. Well, like you said, she's not, you know, alone in this. There's so many people who are complaining about extremely high water bills. And if they're getting bills especially during a period where there was no safe drinking water available, they really shouldn't have to pay anything, at least in my humble opinion.

Nicquel Terry Ellis, I really appreciate your reporting. Thank you so much. I appreciate it.

ELLIS: Thanks, Amara.

SANCHEZ: It's probably not the first place you'd think as a center of global conflict. But climate change is remaking maps and global powers are now competing for the Arctic. Why one U.S. senator is putting out an urgent warning after a quick break.



WALKER: The Biden administration recently put out a new policy detailing the United States strategy for one of the hottest pieces of real estate on the plane. And we're talking about the Arctic.

SANCHEZ: Yes. The policy didn't generate many headlines, but one U.S. senator is now issuing an urgent warning. This week, I sat down with Senator Angus King who says the United States is fallen behind on securing the region, which he argues could soon become the center of a global showdown and potentially the stage for a nuclear show of force by Vladimir Putin.


SEN. ANGUS KING (I-ME): This new ocean is appearing on our maps. And it has all kinds of different implications. And we've been slow to pick up on it frankly.

SANCHEZ (voiceover): Maine Senator Angus King says climate change is unlocking a new crossroads and potential center of conflict, the Arctic, where irreversible trends are leading to a global rush with world powers seeking untapped energy supplies, oil and natural gas, minerals, fishing, recreation, and highly coveted shipping routes.

KING: And if you think about the Mediterranean Sea, there worth over 1000 years of war to determine the relationships of those countries surrounding the Mediterranean Sea. The question is, can we open the Arctic and avoid the conflict?

SANCHEZ: By some estimates 75 percent of Arctic ice has disappeared in the last quarter century. In fact, some scientists believe we could see summers without any ice blocking the North Pole within the next dozen years. All that extra space means more shipping lanes and faster shipping times. We could see some shipping routes reduced by up to 15 days. That's a huge economic advantage. Keep in mind though, Russia owns more than half of the coastline in

the Arctic. And according to this graphic by the American Security Project, they've been steadily building it up militarily for years with dozens of new bases and old retrofitted Soviet ones as well.

KING: If there was a conflict with Russia, it's one of the ways that Russia would come at us. I believe, unfortunately, we need to have some response to that. Not in a conflict situation, but just in a defensive situation.

SANCHEZ: CNN got a firsthand look at Russia's northernmost outpost in 2021. And though the Kremlin insisted its intentions for the region were peaceful at the time, that was before the invasion of Ukraine.

There has been speculation that Vladimir Putin might resort to using a nuclear weapon to reassert dominance.


KING: And one of the possibilities is exploding it over the Arctic Ocean as a demonstration.

ANTONY BLINKEN, U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE: The Arctic is crucial to America's foreign policy and national security.

SANCHEZ: While King applauds the Biden administration's new national strategy for the region, the co-chair of the Arctic caucus says more will need to be done.

KING: Russia has like 40 icebreakers. We have one.

SANCHEZ: As other nations, not even geographically close to the Arctic, like China and India lay out their ambitions. Senator King wants a stronger naval presence there, more robust military infrastructure, and a commitment to international treaties like the U.N. Law of the Sea. Steps he believes that could deter a possible war.

KING: I don't know. I think the jury is out on that. But it's at least possible and I think it would be. That would be positive for America and the whole world.


SANCHEZ (on camera): We should note, Senator King, who serves on the Senate Intelligence Committee says there currently is no intelligence showing that a Russian nuclear demonstration in the Arctic is imminent. But he says it's one of many options that Vladimir Putin might soon pursue.

WALKER: That's a fascinating and very relevant story.

Well, over the last few years, there has been a surge in anti-Asian hate crimes in the U.S. And this week, CNN Heroes salutes Michelle Tran, a Chinese and Vietnamese American whose nonprofit Soar Over Hate is trying to fight back. (BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

MICHELLE TRAN, CO-ORGANIZER, SOAR OVER HATE: The day of our distribution, the are past four blocks around the neighborhood where people waited almost two hours to obtain a personal safety device from us.

To make the noise you plug the pin, and it scares people away and alerts people around you.

It was simultaneously heartbreaking but also motivating to see so many people come out. I think it highlighted the need and the fears that many folks like me are experiencing right now.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Thank you so much.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Thank you so much.


TRAN: I hope that our work helps save lives. That's our only hope moving forward.


WALKER: And to learn about all the ways Michelle and her organization are working to combat Asian hate, go to



SANCHEZ: I love this time of year Amara, and not just because of Halloween candy, but also sports, an abundance of sports. And we had one of the biggest Saturday's we've seen in yours yesterday, including some shocking upsets in the baseball playoffs and a titan going down in college football.

WALKER: Yes, I heard a lot of groaning yesterday at a get-together with friends. Coy Wire is here with this morning's "BLEACHER REPORT." Hi, Coy!

COY WIRE, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT (on camera): Good morning. October surprises not just for politics. Saturdays in October rock. And this was one of the best we've seen in a long time. Let's start with the baseball playoffs with a 111-win Dodgers are headed home after just four playoff games. LA had won all six series they played against the Padres in the regular season but San Diego taking the one that counts.

Padres were down three zip but they rally the score five runs in the seventh. Jake Cronenworth' two-run single giving them the lead for good. So, when Josh Hader says see you later to Freddie Freeman and the Dodgers, the ninth inning, it was on. San Diego with a five-three win. It's their first trip to the national championship series in 24 years. So. break out the bubbly and don't forget your bubble goggles. And if you had the Padres facing the Phillies in the NLCS, pat

yourself on the back. Philly taking down the defending champion Braves thanks to some history from J.T. Realmuto. He's the first catcher the hit an inside-the-park homer in a playoff game. Running 23 miles per hour, he finished the base path in 14 seconds. Phillies cruise to an 8-3 win. They'll now go to San Diego to face the Padres in the NLCS starting Tuesday.

To the American League where the mariners were hosting their first playoff game in 21 years. And it felt like we'd need 21 years for this game to end. It was scoreless through 17 innings, 42 batters struck out, both are postseason records. This one goes to the eighteenth. Tied for the most in a postseason game, but Houston's Jeremy Pena hits a homerun giving the Astros the eventual game-winner. Houston wins ones that sweep in this series. The game last is six hours, 22 minutes. The third longest playoff game in history.

Finally, Knoxville turned into Rockville, a sea of oranges. Number six Tennessee host number three Alabama Tide and were down 28-10 at one point but rise back to take a 49-42 lead. But with over three minutes to go, Tennessee's Jalen Hurd led to six, also his fifth touchdown of the day, a new school record, tying it at 49 So, it comes down to the kickers.

21 seconds to go, Alabama's Will Reichard, his surefire game winner sails wide right, but no overtime needed. With 15 seconds to go, Vols quarterback Hendon Hooker fires two passes for 45 yards, setting up Chase McGrath. The 40-yard knuckleball is good. The sea of orange now storming the field 52-49, the final, Tennessee's first win over Alabama in 15 seasons. The 52 points, that is the most given up by the tide since 1907.

So, down come the goalposts and the fans take these things on a journey. They go through the tunnel, out of the stadium, into the streets of Knoxville, and eventually, into the Tennessee River for the best victory bath he could ever get.

How about this? Syracuse Orange though, Boris, beating number 14 NC State coach has the Orange win six and O for the first time in 35 years. You were like 1-year-old at the time, bro.

SANCHEZ: Coy, you are trolling me right now. I was hoping we would get Syracuse Orange highlights. We got the wrong orange. We got the Tennessee Volunteers in there.

WIRE: This is like the longest tease ever. Next week.

SANCHEZ: Next week against Clemson.

WIRE: You got it, baby.

SANCHEZ: They better win though.

WIRE: It's going to be a big one.

SANCHEZ: All right, I don't want highlights of a loss. Coy Wire, thank you so much. The next hour of NEW DAY starts right now.