Return to Transcripts main page
ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
Trump Says He'll Change His Tone If President; Trump Tours U.S.-Mexico Border Thursday; McCain Defended By Fellow Vietnam Vet; Bland Left Friend A Voicemail From Jail; Documents Reveals Bland's Prior Suicide Attempt. Aired 9-10:00p ET.
Aired July 22, 2015 - 21:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANDERSON COOPER, HOST: Coming up, another live hour 360 as I said more of my interview with Donald Trump including what he told me that is upcoming trip tomorrow to the U.S.-Mexico border and what he has to say about John McCain's record on veterans.
I'm not talking about the whole war hero issue that's been asked and really answer for the last several days. But I want to try to pin down Donald Trump on specific policy issues relating to veterans. Does he have the answers? Find that out.
COOPER: Just passing 9:00 P.M. here in New York, where earlier today I sit down with Donald Trump. He is right now the leading Republican contender. In the polls, he continues to drop fire from his GOP rivals for what he's been saying and how he's been saying it. He told me that he would take a different tone if elected president, says that he is merely returning fire from those who were taking shots at him.
We talked this morning about his fate and he answered critics to say the tenure of his remarks, but his own beliefs hurt him with the evangelical voters.
We talked with our guest about the interview in the hour ahead. You all remember the controversy around Trump-McCain that started when he made remarks about Mexicans and illegal immigration.
This morning, he announced that tomorrow, he will be taking trips to the border, his first as a candidate. That for the conversation started.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: You're heading to border tomorrow. You've made trips to the border in the past. You've been invited by a group of representing boarder patrol officers. You keep saying Mexico is sending these people across.
DONALD TRUMP, REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Mexico is sending. You said it properly. You said it properly. COOPER: But...
TRUMP: Thank you.
COOPER: But you've offered no proof, and that's what people say about that you talk with no enough proofs.
TRUMP: Well, you may have proof very soon. You may have proof very soon. All you have to do is pick some of the border people.
TRUMP: Some of the border people told me, well, we're going to see a lot of border people tomorrow.
COOPER: We talked to immigration officials and they said look they've never heard of that. There's no evidence of that. When somebody, I mean, of all the people been arrest, you're telling me there will be...
TRUMP: You remember many years ago, Fidel Castro when he emptied the prisons and sent everybody into the United States, right?
COOPER: (Inaudible) yeah.
TRUMP: Very famous, right? This is a much more sophisticated version of the same thing. Mexico doesn't want to have...
COOPER: But there wasn't clear evidence of that time.
TRUMP: This animal -- excuse me -- this animal that killed Kate, he came across five times, five times.
[21:05:00] Now, maybe he came across because he thought the weather was nice, maybe he was pushed across by Mexico officials. Look, but Mexico...
COOPER: But you (inaudible) no proof.
TRUMP: Mexico's leaders are much smarter and sharper, more cunning than our leaders. They are doing things that we don't even know about. Let's see what happens. I'm going to speak to a lot of people tomorrow. There are a lot of people, very excited, then, I'm going to the border tomorrow which I may never see you again, but these are minor details.
COOPER: You're telling me that one illegal immigrant wouldn't have a slit of paper or something that would indicate that he was sent proportionately.
TRUMP: Well, we're going to find out. We're going to say. I think its common sense. Mexico doesn't want to have somebody for 30 years in a prison, went to United States, we'll do it.
COOPER: But you've been saying everybody knows, this is the case that they are being sent... TRUMP: I think so, yeah. I think a lot of people know.
COOPER: There's no evidence...
TRUMP: I think the smart people know. I think the streetwise people know...
COOPER: But you have no evidence.
TRUMP: ... and I think border guards know. Well, you're going to find out if I have evidence. I'm not telling you now, but you're going to find out what I have.
TRUMP: Obama -- I never thought he was qualified to be a president. But the one thing I thought he'd be good at it, is being a cheerleader for the country. Actually he's very divisive.
I really hit them hard over the last two days on the flags. Why aren't you low (ph) for the five marines that were killed? Finally, he lowered the flags. I'm not, you know, I don't want to take credit for it, but I hit him hard. You saw that.
Why doesn't he call up Kate, the parents of Kate? Why -- Kate is just incredibly young woman who were shot, killed by the illegal immigrant. He calls other people. They sent staffs of White House people to this -- on the funeral. They never called the parents or -- the brother of Kate, why? Why can't he put in one phone call to the parents or to the brother of Kate?
COOPER: Well, it's my job to pushback as you know on this kind of things. You didn't lower your flags until the same day that the White House...
TRUMP: Mine, were lower the day before yesterday.
COOPER: So is that (ph) same day as the White House...
TRUMP: Whatever, whatever. They were lowered.
COOPER: Same day as Obama...
TRUMP: And again, I'm not the United States.
COOPER: You also...
TRUMP: You would think that would be automatic.
COOPER: I talk to the brother of Kate who said that you did not call though you had been talking about it. And wish you did that.
TRUMP: Excuse me. I spoke to him numerous times. I spoke to him last night. He's a great guy.
COOPER: Right. Subsequently you have called, but he... TRUMP: Excuse me. I had to leave a period of grieving. I'm Donald Trump. I'm a private person. You have to have...
COOPER: You do want to call?
TRUMP: Of course. I don't want to call the day of the...
TRUMP: ... murder which is exactly by this animal that came in...
TRUMP: ... illegally, five times. So, I wanted to wait and I explained that to Brad. I said, "I have to tell you something. I actually saw what you" -- I said, "I had to leave a period of grieving. I couldn't call you. The President could call the media.
TRUMP: The President could have called that day, the next day or the next day. I'm a private citizen.
COOPER: That's the kind of thing as president, you feel you're doing much, but you would be...
TRUMP: Well, I would call.
COOPER: ... too much less divisive, much more. I mean that's how you envy you...
TRUMP: I would have called, absolutely. That would be a call that you should make. You know what? It's quick. Those people are devastated. They are great people and there are others -- I had a news conference that you people covered, that CNN covered, in California with some of the most incredible people...
COOPER: We covered a lot.
TRUMP: ... with their sons, and daughters, and family were killed by illegal immigrants, that shouldn't been in the country. And yes, I would call those people. I can always find time to call.
One thing about me, I wouldn't be on planes doing all these fundraisers, if we going to have fundraising, maybe you do them in some places else. I mean, the other night in New York, New York was shutdown because Obama's here to go to a Broadway play.
TRUMP: He's here to, you know, when you're in the White House for a limited period of time, I'd be there all the time working, working.
COOPER: The difference...
TRUMP: I wouldn't even have time to comb my hair the way I coming up probably just have to comb it back.
COOPER: Well, and on that now, before we get tomorrow our conversation with Donald Trump. I want to bring in our Chief Political Analyst Gloria Borger, also Weekly Standard Writer, Michael Warren and Former Reagan White House Political Director Jeffrey Lord is currently a contributing editor with American Spectator.
So, Gloria, the border visit plan by Trump tomorrow, is there anyway it does not work out well for him? And surely he's going to get a ton of coverage.
GLORIA BORGER, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL ANALYST: Sure.
COOPER: It certainly allows him to kind of hit it back to border issues which he feels he made a lot of attraction with, got a lot of attention for and obviously, he feels very strong he would.
BORGER: You know, it sounds from his conversation with you, Anderson, that he's got a few things planned. It seems to me that he's going to have some border security people who are going to talk to him about his point of view and agree with him.
You know, two things we know about Donald Trump really well. One is he knows how to put on a show and two is he is relentlessly on message.
And this is his key message in this campaign not only that, you know, he's going to build the wall, but also the issue of immigration plays into everything else. It plays into the fact that Washington can't get anything done. It plays into the fact the politicians don't really care about you or your lives.
And so, you know, I think this is a way for Donald Trump to change a conversation again, get away from all that John McCain stuff that we've been talking about, and start pivoting, as you say, back to the core of his campaign which is by the way what attracted supporters to him in the first place.
[21:10:00] COOPER: Jeffrey, it is interesting how Donald Trump sticks to his guns even when he doesn't produce evidence to backup his claims. I mean, his claim that the Mexican government is behind the legal immigration. They are the ones pushing, you know, these people over the border.
COOPER: I mean, he hasn't offered any or not one shred of proof, not one specific case.
JEFFREY LORD, FORMER REAGEN W.H. POLITICAL DIRECTOR: Anderson, you know ...
COOPER: Go ahead.
LORD: I think he said you did -- it's something about its common sense. You know, we talked about a wall on the American side in terms of keeping people out of the United States but we all remember the Berlin Wall. And in the Berlin Wall situation, that was built to keep people in.
Now, are we being told here that the Mexican government can't somehow find a way to keep their own people from leaving the country illegally?
I mean it defies common sense so I think what he's saying makes a great deal of common sense that this is happening repeatedly. The Mexican government is clearly doing nothing to stop it.
COOPER: Right. But what he's saying goes beyond that, Jeffrey. I mean he's saying that he's comparing us to Cuba intentionally sending out people from Cuba.
LORD: Well, if they did -- right. But if they didn't want to do this -- I mean, to do it intentionally can mean a lot of things. It's not like they need to give them information, slip to leave, is that they just don't guard the border...
COOPER: I hear what you're saying.
LORD: ... and know that they're going to escape and, you know, and so they go.
COOPER: Michael, is there a point though in this race, I mean, maybe it comes when he's on the stage in these debates that he has to get down to specific policy issues. And, you know, later on in this interview, I tried to get him on what he believes if what he thinks about specific bills that John McCain has been shepherding through Congress, through the Senate, relating to veterans issues. Does he -- I asked him if he even knows about what some of these bills, some of these acts of John McCain has actually done and what he know -- if he does even know the details of these.
At some point, does he need to do that or is Trump in a place where that's not what people expect from him?
MICHAEL WARREN, WRITER, THE WEEKLY STANDARD: Yeah. I don't think people expect those details from him. They expect a show and, you know, watching that clip of your interview, I mean, he was really entertaining. And I can see why he's taking off. I won't be surprised if gets -- goes even higher in the polls in these next couple of weeks because he tells Republicans are certain number, a large number of Republicans what they want to hear
Now, that doesn't mean that they're wrong for wanting to hear that. I think there's a problem where Republican candidates, the other Republican candidates aren't really addressing these issues in this way.
So in the debates, I think the problem really is not going to be can Trump or will Trump get details on these things but will the other candidate, the other nine in this first debate who will be up on the stage with him, will they be able to come across a knowledgeable about the issues that he's raising. He's going to be, you know, putting on a show in these debates and these other Republican candidates are going to have to be sharp because people are going to be watching and want to hear answers bout immigration and the crimes that have been committed. I think he's really causing a danger for the other Republican candidates.
BORGER: Well, you know, I was talking to a couple of campaigns today just about that, about that upcoming debate because I think they're all trying to figure out, do they attack Donald Trump in these debates and kind of make them look like a hypocrite?
Say, you know, you've given to Democrats, you know, Hillary Clinton was such a wedding and all that kind of stuff or do they just kind of dismiss him and move on. They're really trying to figure that out because they're on a really tough spot right now because they don't want to push Donald Trump's supporters out of the Republican Party and alienate them, nor do they want Donald Trump to run as an independent candidate because they understand that that could be the death now for them.
LORD: You know, Anderson -- sure. The key to Ronald Reagan's success was he stuck to his message. He didn't do all the detail. He left that to other people. When he was in debates, he's focus on message and in one debate, 1984, he tried it the other way and it didn't work very well.
LORD: ... and then he got back to message. That's what Donald Trump has to do and I suspect he'll do it.
COOPER: Right. I don't think anyone imagines Donald Trump spending, you know, the week before the debate with policy papers, you know, burning the midnight oil. I think that's, you know, I think he is going to go ...
LORD: It would be a mistake.
COOPER: Right. I think to Jeffrey's point interesting.
Jeffery thank you, Michael Warren, good to have you and Gloria Borger as well.
Quick reminder, you can set your DVR, watch 360 anytime you want.
Just ahead, more of my conversation with Mr. Trump, including what he would do as president to help veterans, specifically. Does he have specifics? We'll talk about that. I'll try to pin him down on some. Also about his allegations against John McCain's own record on Veterans Affairs.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: I raised a lot of money for John McCain. I supported him for president. He's been horrible to the veterans and here's what I say, I'm all over the place. I go to all of them whether it's New Hampshire, or Iowa, or California last week.
[21:15:00] I'm all over. I meet so many veterans."
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: When there's Donald Trump to public force of nature is his public force of nature, he rarely shrinks from a fight, seldom backs down he says at his point in speaking styles sets him apart from the field which is drawn the (inaudible) of another straight talker in 2000 presidential nominee, John McCain.
We talked today about the Trump-McCain war of words over American veterans about, what set it off and the specifics of Mr. Trumps beef with John McCain's record.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: You have talked a lot since Saturday about John McCain, the war hero thing. You did attack on McCain's record on veteran issues and we talked about you ...
TRUMP: ... terrible for the veterans. John McCain is -- I supported him for president.
COOPER: Do you follow specific policy...
TRUMP: I raised a lot of -- excuse me. I raised a lot of money for John McCain. I supported him for president. He's been horrible to the veterans and here's what I say. I'm all over the place. I go to all of them whether it's New Hampshire, or Iowa, or California last week. I'm all over. I meet so many veterans. These are big, so beautiful people, they're strong. They see me they have tears pouring down their face. They're treated so badly by the veterans' administration which is corrupt...
COOPER: No doubt about it.
TRUMP: ... and incompetent.
COOPER: Yeah. And we've done tons of reporting on this but every veterans group I've talked to has said what you said about this record on vets is just wrong. CEO of Concerned Veterans of America says with patently falls, ill-informed says McCain "has taken the lead for years...
TRUMP: He's been terrible for the veterans -- excuse me. But trying, that's the word, trying.
COOPER: So let me give this ...
TRUMP: OK. Excuse me, excuse me. He's trying, he's not getting a job done ... COOPER: Let me give you some specifics...
TRUMP: ... because they are living in hell, they are living like third class citizen. The hospitals are falling apart. The new hospitals are costing four or five times what they were supposed to cost and they are not working.
COOPER: So let me -- because you don't talk specifics, let me give you some specifics here.
TRUMP: I do talk specifics.
COOPER: Major's legislation passed last year by John McCain on this and you know what it's done? At the waiting list ...
TRUMP: Excuse me. The waiting lists as of yesterday were longer than they'd ever been in the history of the V.A.
COOPER: Veterans Access to Care through Choice, Accountability and Transparency Act, are you aware what that is?
TRUMP: Excuse me, yes. And can I tell you what? The waiting lists as of yesterday was reported is the longest for veterans, I see them.
[21:20:00] They wait four, five, six days to see a doctor. Excuse me. And then the doctor says, "I'm sorry, I can't see you. I'm going on vacation."
COOPER: But you say he's done nothing. He has done thing...
TRUMP: I didn't say "nothing". I say he's been very ineffective with respect to helping veterans. I see probably -- I bet you will see, in what I've been doing over the last couple of months, more veterans than he sees, all right? They are devastated.
COOPER: Your critique say you're not actually following policy issue. Are you aware what that major legislation did last year?
TRUMP: Well, I think one thing it did is it took the burden off of Obama's back because that was blowing up like crazy around Obama for the horrible job he's done also and other politicians. And by passing that legislation, and now you have the longest waits in history.
But by passing that legislation, it took the burden off people haven't been fired, the scandals all over the place.
COOPER: But that act actually makes it easier to fire V.A. officials. That gives $500 million. It builds 26 new hospitals.
TRUMP: In the meantime, it hasn't been used and they haven't been fired and the V.A. is in worst shape than it's ever been in. It's typical political sub. And I will tell you. The one thing with that act that's really bad, it took the burden off Obama.
He was getting decimated. And that was a good thing because it showed the plague of the veterans. Veterans are being decimated. COOPER: Just this year, McCain introduced the Clay Hunt Suicide Prevention Act for American vets. Are you aware for that even following that?
TRUMP: I knew he introduce things but nothing happens with them. And frankly, even when they get passed whether it's two years ago or this year. And you give me names I can give you many names of people that absolutely don't like John McCain because they felt that he let the veterans down.
COOPER: You started a hotline for vets. John McCain's office says, "Look, we got five full time case workers." In this year alone, they said they've helped dealt with 2000 cases for vets.
TRUMP: I hope you're not trying to make the case that the veterans are being properly taken care.
COOPER: I'm not we done (inaudible) reporting...
TRUMP: Well, it sounds like...
COOPER: No. I'm just saying you're attacking John McCain's records, I'm asking specific.
TRUMP: Probably, the most corrupt group in this country is the Veteran's administration.
Now, you could say corrupt or incompetent, it's both.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: With that on the table, we're joined by retired Navy Captain Charlie Plumb, who like John McCain served as a Naval Aviator and was taken prisoner during Vietnam War. Captain Plumb, it's an honor to have you on the program.
When you heard Donald Trump said to John McCain was not a war hero and then sarcastically say, "Oh, he is a war hero because he was captured", later on the press conference he's now come around and said he respects John McCain he is a war hero. What was your reaction?
CHARLIE PLUMB, RETIRED NAVY FIGHTER PILOT & FORMER POW: My first reaction was humor. I was amused that this draft dodger is calling someone not a hero.
First of all, John never called himself a hero. I never called myself a hero. None of the guys that I was with over there thought we were heroes. If you talk about any veteran they'll say no. We weren't heroes.
So, it's kind of in a consequential and somewhat humorous that, you know, that this draft dodger would actually call -- make a statement like that.
COOPER: I should point out he got a number of deferments while in school, and then that it was a medical issue apparently, and then had, I guess, a high draft number. It is important for people watching to know what you and John McCain and many others or any other American service members went through in Vietnam.
You were prisoners of war for almost six years. I mean, there's no way -- other way to put it. You were tortured, both of you.
PLUMB: That we were. John graduated from the Naval Academy a few years before I did. He was one of my flight instructors. He taught me to fly jets. I was in the same company at the Naval Academy with his brother Joe.
So I knew the McCains pretty well. I was shutdown in May of 1967. He was shutdown on October. And he came into our camp. Clearly, the most injured prisoner of war I ever saw. He had seven broken bones and they were twisting his bones to torture the poor guy.
And yet one of the toughest and best leaders we had in that prison camp was John McCain.
COOPER: He was offered early release because his father was an admiral, it would have been a pro quo. He turned that down.
PLUMB: That's right. He did. The bidding (ph) has called him the crowned prince because they thought they had really captured somebody was really important. Well of course they did.
But when they tried to make propaganda from that, John turned that absolutely down, got into a lot of trouble because he refused to go home early.
And not just because of his dad. You know, he pointed to the rest of us. He said, "You know, I've got buddies here. I've got 300 buddies here. Let them go home."
Truth was he probably had more authority, more reason to go home because he was so badly injured even any of the rest of us.
COOPER: When you hear Donald Trump says as he did against that, that Senator McCain hasn't really done enough, hasn't done much for veterans. What's your response?
[21:25:00] Because, again, in this interview I tried -- I don't think I did a very successful job. I was trying to pin him down on how much Donald Trump is really following, you know, the various acts, the various bills that McCain has been involved with.
PLUMB: I think you did an excellent job, Anderson, because he clearly had no clue of any of these bills that you presented to him. He shot back with some kind of broad answer to your question and just -- he didn't make any sense.
COOPER: Right. That allowed President Obama to deflect -- it's not an answer of what actually the bill itself said.
By the way, and I should point out that first act, I mean, it sets $500 million -- to build 26 new medical facilities, to improve access to make kind of a one stop shopping for vets. I mean, there's number of things you can argue about has it been instituted, as it is moving fast enough?
But there are certainly things that have been done.
PLUMB: Well, the good news is, it's focusing more attention on the Veteran's administration. Now, there are a lot of really good things happening at the V.A. I use the V.A. as my health care provider and so, I can talk to you personally about the V.A.
One of the things John McCain has done incidentally is to coordinate the communication between the military hospitals and the Veteran's administration.
15 to 20 years ago, they didn't even talk to each other. Their data systems did not work. When I went from a Navy hospital to the V.A. I carried my own paper files. And the realism is that the V.A. has probably the finest database, the data system in the world of any health care system. So they're doing a lot of really fine things.
The other thing about the V.A. is they had more dedicated health professionals that I have ever seen anywhere else. They don't get paid extra when they do an extra operation. You know, they are solidly behind the veterans.
Now, do we have problems? Of course we do, like any other big health care organization. But I think John McCain has done a lot to try to fix those problems.
COOPER: Captain Plumb, it's an honor to talk to you and I appreciate very much you being with us tonight. Thank you.
PLUMB: Thanks, Anderson.
COOPER: Just ahead, breaking news. In the Sandra Bland Case, we -- just got an audio tape of a voicemail she left to her fried. The call she made in jail, the day after her arrest which was on July 10th on a Friday, days before she was found dead in her cell.
COOPER: The breaking news on the Sandra Bland case. We're just getting an audio tape of a voicemail she left her friend. This is a call that she made the day after her arrest. The day she was in jail. The audio comes from our affiliate KTRK.
SANDRA BLAND, COMMIT SUICIDE IN THE JAIL: Hey, this is me. I'm just -- was able to see the judge. I don't really know. They got me held at $5,000 bond. I'm still just at a loss for words honestly about this whole process. How these switching lanes with no signal turned into all of this. I don't know, but I'm still here. So, I guess call me back when you can.
COOPER: That was the day after her arrest. In addition just short time ago, officials in Texas released to jail and take screening a forum from Ms. Bland revealing that she told them she had attempted suicide back in 2014.
Now, three days after that forum was presumably filled out with Bland, 28 years old, was found dead in her jail cell.
Authority says she hanged herself with a garbage bag. The District Attorney as we reported, is treating her death is a murder investigation.
However, she died in that cell, this much asserting. This tragedy began with a routine traffic stop that quickly escalated into an arrest that landed Ms. Bland in jail where she had spent her final days and hours.
Brian Young joins us with the latest. What do we know about that voicemail?
BRIAN YOUNG, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, that voicemail is really sticks out with we were told, obviously, she was here for three days. And she was having trouble with the phone system here in the jail zone. And actually we went inside the same jail cell as she was in, number 95.
There's a phone in each of the cells and they give you a pin number and someone has to put money on that pin number so you could make phone calls.
Sandra Bland was having so much trouble making those phone calls. The jail official were actually letting her come out of her come out of her cell and make it at the front desk so that she could try to get in contact with friends or family.
And according to the sheriff deputies here, they were saying she was having so much trouble getting contact with friends or family. She was going frustrated.
In fact just before she died, apparently she knocked on the door and asked one more time to come out because she was having trouble activating her pin. We do know she got in contact with a sister and then from there she left that voicemail with a friend but outside of that we don't know, what else up, we just do know that she kept trying to call friends over and over again with no response.
COOPER: This intake screening form that were released today shows a possible suicide attempt made last year, so it?
YOUNG: That's exactly right, Anderson. I actually have it in my hand this intake form that's right here. On page number two, it states try to commit suicide, loss the baby in 2014 and try to use pills.
One of the confusing things about this form, on sheet number four, it states that she had epilepsy and then here it says, did you try to attempt suicide and it's marked no. So on page four, it says no attempt to suicide. On page two, it clearly says that she lost the baby, tried to use pills and try to commit suicide.
And this is going with the information that we learned earlier today. We're able to confirm that they believed she was also from the -- was cutting herself and maybe was trying to self medicate with marijuana, Anderson?
COOPER: So sad. Brian Young, I appreciate it. Tonight's Sandra Bland's death remains a mystery. I should say it's sad and infuriating when you look at that dashcam video.
We still do not know exactly how she spent her final moments inside that jail cell.
Waller, excuse me, Waller County District Attorney Elton Mathis will eventually present his findings to a grand jury. He joins us tonight.
I want to talk about what happened in the jail. In terms of the investigation now that's been launched into the initial interaction obviously you've seen the dashcam video, the complete video, I understand, is going to be released or has already been released, what are your concerns in the video that you have seen about that interaction.
ELTON MATHIS, WALLER DISTRICT ATTORNEY: Well, I could say the first time that I'd saw the video, I didn't like it. And to be fair, I didn't like the trooper's behavior. I noticed the things that the Department of Public Safety notice when they issued their report. And then to be fair, I did not particularly care from Ms. Bland's behavior either but that's what of the things we have to deal with, this public servants is, we're not in entitled to have people like this.
[21:35:00] And the other key piece of evidence that we need to obtain is Ms. Bland's cellphone.
I've been told that the FBI now has custody of the cellphone. We need to see what she was videotaping if anything, what she was texting, what she was e-mailing because as you can see on the video when she gets out, she is holding it up.
It appears that she is taping and any of videotape that she may have done is certainly going to be relevant to what the trooper saw and the interactions between the two of them in the call.
COOPER: There is obviously now as you said investigation into that suicide or anything else.
There are reports that preliminary resolves from on Ms. Bland's autopsy showed that the she had large amounts of marijuana in her system.
Can you confirm that?
MATHIS: We have an initial report that she did have quantity of marijuana in her system. However, we are waiting to make any kind of formal determination of that after further toxicology results were done on her. COOPER: It makes sense. There is also reporting that the autopsy shows that Bland was called a cutter, someone who self-harms. Can you confirm that? And if so, what kind of marks on her body showed if that to be the case?
MATHIS: Again, anything that I'd say about the autopsy is going to be preliminary oral, that's been shared with my office and in the case of the --what opinion of the medical examiner appears to be cutting, scars on the arm. It's just her arm where, I don't know how to describe it. It looks like where someone is being cut overtime.
Some of those actually appeared to be fresher and that they were scabbed.
COOPER: The investigation in Bland's death, can you say where it stands now? What part of the process is it?
MATHIS: Where we are? I would say at this point to be the major pieces of evidence which are being analyzed at this time, or must play in cellphone. And also, I ask for the rangers to take a hard look and do forensic testing on the garbage bag that was used to hang Ms. Bland. And I'd say that in the event that she hanged herself. She was hanged by someone else because I believe that would be very telling who if any DNA is on that garbage bag specifically the knot that was tied in the garbage bag.
COOPER: The Houston Chronicle is reporting that according to intake papers that she filled out when she was taken into custody or brought should be the holding facility that she indicated previous suicide attempts.
Can you confirm that? Are you aware of that?
MATHIS: I have been advised that by the sheriff's office. I've actually seen that paper work and it does appear that she indicated to the sheriff's office that she had tried to kill herself at least once. I believe, she indicated that was the pills. I don't believe there was indication on there to what kind of pills it was.
COOPER: Do you know then if in the case like that that would raise some red flag that would alter the monitoring of somebody in custody like that?
MATHIS: Anderson, I don't want to sit here and claim to be an expert on jail policies and procedures, you know, I'm the district attorney. I'm a prosecutor.
MATHIS: But from a common sense standpoint, I would think that would be something that of course would be important by jail commission standards when assessing an inmate for protectoral care once they come into the control of the jail.
COOPER: Well, Elton Mathis, I appreciate your time. Thank you.
MATHIS: Thank you, sir.
COOPER: Well, the dashcam video is surely tough to watch. It raised a lot of questions about the actions of that Texas state trooper how we conducted the traffic stop.
Sandra Bland sister says, she would basically just picking on her. Let's take a closer look next.
COOPER: Well, there's a lot of questions around the Sandra Bland case to investigations going on. One, into what happened inside that jail cell. There's also hugely troubling questions that of the dashcam video of her arrest raise.
For example, how does someone pulled over for allegedly failing to use her turn signal to change lanes end up in jail for three days in the first place? There's a lot of attention to how this traffic stop was conducted, how it is escalated. Miguel Marquez has more.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MIGUEL MARQUEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The very first interaction between Sandra Bland and Texas trooper, Brian Encinia normal enough.
BRIAN ENCINIA, TROOPER: How long you been in Texas.
BLAND: Got here yesterday.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MARQUEZ: Pulling her over for a lane change violation after checking her license and registration, he returns to the driver side about five minutes later, the tone changed.
ENCINIA: You OK?
BLAND: I'm waiting on you. This is your job. I'm waiting on you whatever you want to do.
ENCINIA: You seem very irritated.
MARQUEZ: Seconds later, trooper, Encinia apparently annoyed by her answer (inaudible).
ENCINIA: Do you mind putting out your cigarette, please?
BLAND: I'm in my car why do I have to put out my cigarette?
ENCINIA: So you can step on out now.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's not against the law to smoke in your own car. MARQUEZ: The situation rapidly escalates. 11 times, the trooper demands, she exit the vehicle finally saying, she's under arrest.
BLAND: Don't touch me. I'm not under arrest. You don't have the right to touch me...
ENCINIA: You are under arrest.
MARQUEZ: The argue and struggle finally pulling his Taser, issuing this threat.
ENCINIA: Get out of the car. I will light you up. Get out.
MARQUEZ: In the officers affidavit written after the arrest, neither the cigarette nor the Taser, mentioned. She is charged with assault but Encinia told her she was under arrest before the alleged assault ever happened.
HARRY HOUCK, CNN LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: I don't see anything here for being arrested for the motive of vehicle violation. I don't see resisting arrest here. Honest, it's just all one complaint for assault of a public servant. There is no problem with that.
MARQUEZ: The initial dashcam video released by Texas Department of Public Safety had at least six video but not audio anomalies in two areas of the video.
This car, disappearing several times, the tow truck operator jumping from outside to inside, Texas authorities saying, it was an error in uploading.
PAUL GINSBERG, FORENSIC MULTIMEDIA ANALYST: It's professionalism. It's everything and yet, they uploaded something that apparently had flaws.
MARQUEZ: A new version of the video released by Texas DPS is shorter than the original byte, three minutes possibly because the digital loops in the original video. The new video contains no new information.
[21:45:00] The altercation between Bland and Encinia off camera is disturbing.
BLAND: You slam me and knock my head on the ground. I have epilepsy you mother (inaudible).
ENCINIA: Good. You're going to jail for resisting this.
BLAND: Whatever. Whatever.
MARQUEZ: Later, with the dashcam still running, Encinia off camera is disturbing. BLAND: ... slam me and knock my head on the ground. I have epilepsy you mother (inaudible).
ENCINIA: Good. You're going to jail...
ENCINIA: ... for resisting arrest.
MARQUEZ: Later with the dashcam still running and Encinia can be heard describing his side of the arrest to a superior.
ENCINIA: I only took enough force as I seemed necessary, I even de- escalated once we were on the pavement.
MARQUEZ: Miguel Marquez, CNN, New York.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Joining me now our CNN Legal Analyst former Police Officer and former Prosecutor Philip Holloway and former Federal Prosecutor Sunny Hostin. I got to say something to hear to police officer afterward say he try to de-escalate as much as possible. it really I mean, again, it shows the difference between having a video and not having a video because if you don't have a video you're just going on with the officer is saying.
SUNNY HOSTIN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: It sure does. I mean it's just ludicrous that he would say that because it's very clear. I think to most people when your see the dashcam video and then there's that other video taken a by bystander that he wasn't in de-escalation mode at all. And he is the professional in that situation and certainly should have taken a lot of steps to de-escalate the situation and he just fails to do that.
COOPER: Yeah. Philip, because I mean when I talk to districts attorney, you know, one of the things that the police officer is there, the state trooper by themselves on, you know, are expected this is courtesy and respect and they, you know, they are taught to expect a certain amount of hostility and to have a higher standard than frankly the people they are dealing with.
PHILIP HOLLOWAY, FORMER PRESECUTOR: I've always thought Anderson that if, you know, once you put on a police badge and a police uniform you also have to put on a thicker skin because your going to deal with some people who are upset because they have been pulled over, you going to get deal with people who are upset for all source of things, and you just got to let it go. You got to let it roll off your back and move on to the next thing.
If he wanted to just give her a warning like he said he wanted to do, he simply could have just said, OK. Well, I'm sorry you're having a bad day. Here's your warning. Drive safely and move on, but he didn't do that. And like Sunny said, he did escalate this and for him to call his supervisor, and try to lie and say that he de-escalate it, is absolutely absurd because the video speak for itself.
He escalated that situation into something that should never ever have got to that far.
COOPER: Sunny it is the officer's prerogative, as I understand it, to ask someone to get out of the vehicle if he or she believes their safety is under threat...
HOSTIN: That right.
COOPER: ... or at risk.
HOSTIN: The Supreme Court has made it very clear that an officer can ask someone to get out of his or her car but only if the officer is feeling unsafe. You have an officer that stop these women went back to his car and came back five minutes later and wrote a warning when he re-approach the car. He isn't afraid for his safety at all. He is having a conversation with her. It is very clear to me and I think to most people when he look when she just climbs to extinguish her cigarette then he says, get out of the car, that is direct result...
HOLLOWAY: That's right.
HOSTIN: ... of his -- of her attitude to him rather than of -- , you know, being fearful for his safety and remember he doesn't call backup. He just opens up the door and officer...
COOPER: Why I think he does -- he gets on a radio.
HOSTIN: But after he...
COOPER: ... after opens the door...
HOSTIN: ... opens up the door. So an officer that's truly fearful does not behave that way.
COOPER: So the fact that that in take forms indicate Senator Bland had to try commit suicide just last year although it seems like, according to Brian Young reporting, part of the form says -- she said she tried pills and then the next page she said she haven't tried, or she marked no for a prior suicide attempt.
But the fact that she had at least on one page talk about this should that have raised red flags to the jail that further care was require?
HOLLOWAY: Yes, absolutely. So in my own personal experience, I can tell you that it would raise a red flag. And I went so far as to talk to some sheriffs who actually run jails today. And I have been told that, yes, this should have absolutely have raised red flag, they should have been monitoring her very closely. They should have gotten more detailed, medical information rather than simply just marking a block on the form maybe taking away shoe laces and certainly not putting a trash bag into the cell where she can have access to something that would do her harm. Because they were put on notice, Anderson, that she had a problem.
In addition to having lost her child that same form...
HOLLOWAY: ... says that she had lost a mother or a mother-in-law or, or a loved one in the previous year, in addition to losing the baby. So there are lots of red flags here that would have indicated that she should have been given some extra degree of attention...
COOPER: Yeah, yeah.
HOLLOWAY: ... to make sure that this would not happen.
COOPER: Philip is good to have you on. Philip Holloway, Sunny Hostin, always.
Just ahead new, details tonight about the shooting rampage left five service members dead in Chattanooga, Tennessee and the heroic actions that the FBI says save more lives.
COOPER: The FBI is praising the heroism of marines who risked their own lives to save others during last week shooting rampage that left five service members dead in Chattanooga, Tennessee. As new details in the timeline come to light, some of the brave actions and some marines who are willing ran back into danger.
Alina Machado reports.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ED REINHOLD, FBI SPECIAL AGENT IN CHARGE: At this time, we're treating him as a home-grown violent extremist. We believe he acted on his own that day.
ALINA MACHADO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The FBI revealing new details tonight about that deadly massacre in Tennessee. According to investigators, three to five minutes is all the time it took Mohammad Youssef Abdulazeez to go a shooting rampage at this Naval Operation Center in Chattanooga, killing four marines and one sailor who are now being held as heroes.
MAJ. GEN. PAUL BRIER, 4TH MARINE DIVISION COMMANDING GENERAL: Our marines reacted the way you would expect, rapidly going from room to room. They got their fellow marines to safety. Once they had got them to safety, some willingly ran back into the fight. All of us can be extremely proud of what our marines did that day.
MACHADO: The rampage started at this recruiting station where authorities say Abdulazeez fired dozens of shots from his rented silver Ford Mustang. He then drove seven miles to the Navy facility where he crashed through a gate and begin firing.
[21:55:00] REINHOLD: A service member from inside the facility absurd him and opened fire on him, firing several rounds at him. The shooter then responded by shooting into the building.
MACHADO: Abdulazeez armed with an assault riffle, a handgun and several magazines of ammunition eventually made it inside shooting a service member who later died. The gunman walked out at the back of the building and killed four marines before a Chattanooga police officer shot and killed him.
At the scene, investigators found two weapons belonging to service members despite the policy forbidding members of the military from carrying weapons on bases and in recruiting centers. At least one of those weapons was used to fire at Abdulazeez.
REINHOLD: Whether he was struck by those individuals is unclear at this time.
MACHADO: The shooting a shock to the gunman's friend who in a series of text messages obtained exclusively by CNN expressed disbelief. James Petty, a close friend who considered Abdulazeez a devout Muslim and spiritual mentor rights, it can't be our Abdulazeez. The friend also discussed a possible motive asking he ever talk jihad or any or how corrupt the society is, the reply, "Dude, he just had a new job and everything." This is out of nowhere.
Now, the FBI special agent in charge who has at the news conference was asked if any of the victims were killed in friendly fire, he did not elaborate but what he did say was that the information they have so far suggests that the victims were all killed by the same gun. They hope to learn much more once the ballistics reports is ready, Anderson.
COOPER: Alina Machado, I appreciate the update. We'll be right back.
COOPER: Well, that's it for us. Thanks for watching. We'll see you again 11:00 P.M. eastern for another edition of 360. CNN tonight with Don Lemon starts now, Don.