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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
New Details Found in NY Prison Escapee;s Joyce Mitchell's Husband Speaks Out; Confederate Flag Debate; Breaking News in Freddie Gray Case. Aired 8-9p ET
Aired June 23, 2015 - 20:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[20:00:12] ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: Good evening. Thanks for joining us.
If you're waiting for the next shoe to drop, the New York prison story, tonight we have three. Two are the boots that one of the killers, David Sweat and Richard Matt apparently abandoned in a rush to get out of the cabin hide out before searchers could catch them. It is giving authorities new reason to believe could search them. It's giving them reason to believe that this all could be over soon.
The third falling shoe, and this could be very big, concerns just on how far prison seamstress and alleged accomplice Joyce Mitchell went for the two killers who befriended and reportedly became intimate with. Our source telling us about the detailed admission she made about her role in the jail break and who else she implicated.
Our Jason Carroll has that angle. He joins us shortly. But first, Gary Tuchman on the boots in the cabin and what it means for the manhunt right now.
GARY TUCHMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The small community for Owls Head, New York is where the search for two escaped killers could have anything finally end.
Hundreds of police officers on patrol within minutes of the cabin where the DNA samples Richard Matt and David Sweat were discovered. Kevin Mulverhill is the county sheriff.
SHERIFF KEVIN MULVERHILL, FRANKLIN COUNTY, NEW YORK: I think we have a pretty good indication they're here.
TUCHMAN: But your gut is that they're close to us right now?
MULVERHILL: My gut is that if they're here we are going to find them.
TUCHMAN: The cabin where the killers' DNA was found was right up this trail into the woods. The state police officers behind are well armed. This way could get (INAUDIBLE) but they can't be complacent. They have to be ready to use their weapons at any time.
Late in the afternoon, a flurry of activity. Police started to race to one particular location in the town but it ended up being a false alarm. The two fugitives in the hunting cabin were taken by surprise and left in a hurry over the weekend. A law enforcement source briefed on the investigation tells CNN, such a hurry they left personal items behind, including a pair of boots which suggests one of the killers may be barefoot.
Without shoes or boots, walking up this thick brush with the vegetation and rocks would be very difficult, obviously. But there are a lot of trails here. The issue though, is these trails are going to be open. It is unlikely these escapees would risk be in the open with all these police around.
Many of the homes in search hot zones are now empty permanent residents leaving, vacationers not coming. But Joyce Lawson and Erwin Fleury are in their 80s and staying put.
JOYCE LAWSON, RESIDENT, OWLS HEAD, NEW YORK: No place to go, and I'm not really frightened. If I was, I probably would leave but I'm not, so --
TUCHMAN: And tell me why.
LAWSON: Half the night I have troopers all over the place and all day, too.
TUCHMAN: Are you scared of these guys?
ERWIN FLEURY, RESIDENT, OWLS HEAD, NEW YORK: These kids? Are you kidding me? After what I went through? No.
TUCHMAN: And what did you go through?
FLEURY: Well, I'll tell you what. I went through North Korea and South Korea, and I'm still here.
TUCHMAN: During the war -- 1950-52?
TUCHMAN: So what is going on now is nothing to being a Korean war veteran.
FLEURY: And not a one of them over there scared me, so --
TUCHMAN: So you can handle it?
FLEURY: I can handle it.
COOPER: Now Gary Tuchman joins us. Now, what are officials saying about the fact that they haven't found these guys yet? How confident are they?
TUCHMAN: Well, the sheriff tells me, Anderson, this morning, a law enforcement briefing was held. And the message this morning was, today is the day that we catch them. Well, they have not been caught as of yet. But you have hundreds of police, they are surrounding the hot spots of this perimeter. And the police remain confident that time is on their side and these guys would be nabbed, they couldn't go very far from where the DNA was found.
COOPER: All right, Gary, appreciate the update.
Hacksaw blades in frozen hamburger meat, the question has been who cooked it up, so to speak. That and precisely how it got to Richard Matt, the woman's alleged lover.
Now tonight, we have late word that Joyce Mitchell has admitted to doctoring the meat and implicating a correction's officer in the rest. His attorney may have something to say about that when he joins us shortly.
Joining us now though, Jason Carroll with all the details. So what more are you learning about how these tools got into the prison?
JASON CARROLL, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, a lot more. Apparently this all happen, Anderson, just about a week before the prisoners made their escape. Apparently, Joyce Mitchell convinced a guard there at the prison, Gene Palmer, to help smuggle in this slab of meat. Inside this slab of meat, the hacksaw blades you talked about.
But I spoke to Gene Palmer's attorney. I spoke to him at length. He says his client didn't know what was inside the meat. But he also said that his client did in fact pass on that meat to Richard Matt. It didn't go through a metal detector which was a violation of prison policy.
COOPER: And I understand, you are also learning about other favors that Joyce Mitchell performed for Sweat and Matt?
[20:05:00] CARROLL: Yes, and really it's fascinating when you hear about it. Because apparently for several months Joyce Mitchell had been convincing other guards there at the facility, that these were good guys, that these were guys who could be trusted. She would bake goods for other guards there to exert a curry favor with them. And then at one point, went so far, Anderson, as to recommend to prison officials that David Sweat's cell be moved next to Richard Matt's. So this sort of goes to the extent that this woman was involved with these two inmates.
COOPER: And there is this new video that surface of Matt, months before committing that he was locked up for. What do we know about that video?
CARROLL: Right, that video from 1997, it is really fascinating because it gives you just sort of insight into the mindset of this man, even back then. This video in 1997, shows Richard Matt playing with some sort of blow gun, and then making a really sick aids joke at one point on the video. Take a quick listen and you be the judge.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is my friend, Ricky Matt here. He is a freaking crazy lunatic maniac.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is the south American blow gun.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And we'll demonstrate.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We'll demonstrate how powerful this gun is today.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're going to dip these in aids blood and we'll put a patent on them and sell them as deadly weapons.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Show them the dart. I'm about to fire this gun into Ricky Matt's arm. And we'll show you the true meaning of pain. Ricky, with a smile. He loaded it. He is ready.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're about to shoot the dart into Ricky's arm.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Went in there, started to come out there.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CARROLL: And Anderson, as you point out just nine months after that video was taken, Matt tortured, murdered and then dismembered his own boss.
COOPER: Jason Carroll, appreciate it.
So tonight, the focus seems to intensify on Gene Palmer, who was put on administrative leave on Friday, and question that link on Saturday, has neither been arrested. We should point out, no charge with anything. Last night in the program, his attorney Andrew Brockway said his client is cooperating fully with the investigation. Mr. Brockway joins us again tonight.
Appreciate you being with us again.
So let's just be clear. The frozen hamburger meat containing hacksaw blades, where did your client, Mr. Palmer, take possession of that and what did he do with it?
ANDREW BROCKWAY, GENE PALMER'S ATTORNEY: Well, Anderson, Mr. Palmer receives the request from Mrs. Mitchell to take hamburger meat to Mr. Matt, I apologize, and it's not uncommon for inmates to cook inside of their cells. And Ms. Mitchell, before handing off the meat to Mr. -- sorry --
COOPER: That is OK.
BROCKWAY: Before he handed off the meat, he asked if there was anything wrong with it. And she said no. And we're learning now that there were tools hidden inside of that package. Mr. Palmer did not know what was inside the package. He had no knowledge beforehand that there were any type of tools inside. The only mistake he made was trusting Joyce Mitchell. COOPER: So do you know why he trusted Joyce Mitchell on this? I
mean, did he know her that well? Did he think Richard Matt was a good guy? Did he not have any suspicions? Because he could have run it, I assumed, have run it through a metal detector?
BROCKWAY: He could have run it through a metal detector. That was his mistake, Anderson. He didn't run it through the metal detector. He feels extremely guilty about that. He is regretful. He apologizes for that. But Ms. Mitchell was just as manipulative as these two inmates were. He trusted her. He didn't have a close relationship with her, but she was able to do this with many other individuals who worked inside the prison, I've been told.
COOPER: You mean to say she was able to these to many other individuals? You mean, she gave things to other individuals to sneak into the prison?
BROCKWAY: I wouldn't go that far, but she did, in her own way, manipulate other guards to do other things for inmates that she was close to.
COOPER: Did Mr. Palmer explain at all why he didn't have any suspicions about this? I mean, is this a common practice that, you know, people would kind of do favor for inmates?
BROCKWAY: Well, when the district attorney released the information today he stated himself it was common practice for the inmates to be able to cook inside of their cells. So from what I've been told from the district attorney themselves, it is common practice pretty much.
COOPER: But if they're able to cook inside the cell, there must be some accepted procedure for them to purchase meat or whatever they're going to cook, is there?
[20:10:03] BROCKWAY: There is, they can get it through the commissary, but there have been many instances where meat was given to the prisoners after inmates finished their meals. They passed it off to other prisoners, guards, once they finished their meals would give it to prisoners. So it was just an accepted practice. You have to remember these are very dangerous people that are house in the facility and they have to gain trust from them. A lot of them, especially Mr. Sweat and Mr. Matt would give information to the guards to prevent fights or stabbings from happening inside the prison.
COOPER: So, do you know why your client did not run it through the metal detector? Is that process onerous? Is it - I mean, in order to not run it through the metal detector, do you actually have to kind of sneak it in?
BROCKWAY: You don't have to sneak it in. I mean, the big story here is the lack of funding inside of the prison. Their budget has been cut. And there have been short cuts - been taken out of necessary. And no, it was not overly burdensome to pass it through the metal detector, but Mr. Palmer made a simple mistake and he apologizes for that. COOPER: You're talking about budget cuts, but I mean, the budget cuts
are not so severe that the metal detector has been turned off or removed. I mean, there was a metal detector and it worked, and your client just decided for whatever reason not to run this meat through the metal detector?
BROCKWAY: That's true. And I think what he is guilty of is trusting Joyce Mitchell.
COOPER: Do you know - I mean, how was your client supposedly was conned (ph) by Joyce Mitchell? I mean, clearly your client from what you said in the past has used one or both of these men for information in the past. Did he just think OK, well, did he just not really think about it too much, or was there some special way that she conned him?
BROCKWAY: Well, as you have heard, she has conned many individuals inside of the prison. She would curry favors amongst the prisoners. She would bring them baked goods. She was just very good at what she did. And my client fell for it. I mean, if he is guilty of anything, Anderson, is that he is a very trusting individual and he is looking forward to telling his side of the story.
COOPER: Well, Mr. Brockway, we look forward to hearing his side of the story. I appreciate you being on with us tonight. Thank you again.
As always, we want to give quick reminder. You can set your DVR. You can watch "360" whenever you would like.
Coming up next, a detailed look at the factors, helping and hindering those thousands of searchers tightening the net. Two veteran law men and one experienced survival expert joins us ahead.
And later, Joyce Mitchell's husband, Lyle, on his wife's chilling confession.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She said, I have something to tell you. I said what is that? She said their plan was, they want to kill you.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
[20:16:05] COOPER: The breaking news tonight, indications that David Sweat and Richard Matt may have left their hideout in a hurry, and without some of the necessities in surviving the rough county surrounding the search zone. Two against nature, two against a thousand searches, yet somehow they remain at large.
Joining us tonight Tom Foreman with the virtual look at the challenges facing hunters and hunted alike.
So, Tom, the search for these men, what does it look like right now? TOM FOREMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Anderson, you know, since they
disappeared from this prison in upstate New York, there have been hundreds of reports, over hundreds of miles in where they might be. Nonetheless, searchers have now zeroed in on this location, about 22, 23 miles away from the prison which they think these guys could have reached by following trails through the woods, maybe something like that. And they're trying to set up a perimeter around this. But let me tell you, this is much harder than you think.
Consider this, if these guys were spotted and they started running the minute they were spotted, and in let's say in two hours, just two hours they covered five miles. If you do the math, what that means is a circle, because it could go in any director would be about 31 miles around.
Now, you have to get assets all the way around there. So even though they have up to a thousand different officers out there helping in the search right now and they have all sorts of different vehicles used from armored Humvees to SUVs to ATVs to even helicopter overhead and dogs, that sort of thing, all the assets have to be spread out over the 31-mile circle. That is a very difficult job to do in part because of the geography here.
This is an area that is full of woods and cliffs and bogs and ravines and creeks and all sorts of things that make it very difficult to see somebody. Yes there are some roads, there are some cuts for power lines and some railroads lines, things like that. But the minute it gets dark or bad weather moves in and you simply get into an area of vegetation, Anderson, very hard to see somebody even very close by.
COOPER: We have been told that they have thermal imaging, infrared imaging devices, how much easier does that make it?
FOREMAN: It certainly helps, there is no question. Look, if you bring a helicopter in here and it has some sort of thermal imaging, yes, it can fly over the woods and it can pick up heat signatures down below.
Here is the problem, if it is high enough in the air to scan a big area, it will also pick up the heat signatures of other searchers and the big animals like deer and bear, that sort of thing, all of that, clutters it up, and by the way, it is summer time. So everything is warmer than usual. A lot of background noise.
The solution, of course, is to fly closer to the ground with your helicopter. Then you get a tighter pattern and you can see things better. But think about that big 31-mile circle we're talking about. And that is the smallest circle here.
If you're close to the ground, you have to fly with an awful lot and you can miss some awful lot. The simple truth is, yes, they're setting up a net, Anderson, but by definition, a net means a lot of holes.
COOPER: Tom Foreman, appreciate that. Thank you. Let's bring in the professionals now. Former FBI assistant director
Chris Swecker, John Cuff, formerly in-charge of the U.S. marshal's east fugitive division. And survival expert Shane Hobel, founder and owner of the Mountain Scout Survival School.
I mean, John, it's interesting to look at that idea of a perimeter. How do you actually set up a perimeter. I mean, how far apart are individuals so that somebody can't just slip through?
JOHN CUFF, FORMER U.S. MARSHAL: Well, Anderson, in an ideal situation you like to be as close to one another as you can. Obviously, in this type of terrain and the wooded area, it's something that the tactical experts note on that area. And you want -- time is on the side of law enforcement here. So the wider you cast that net, OK, they contain them in there, it's just going to take longer due to the challenges and the mountainous area to track these guys now.
[20:19:58] COOPER: Chris, the fact that these guys may have left the cabin in a hurry, I mean, that certainly works in law enforcement's favor, particularly the idea that maybe one of them doesn't have boots on.
CHRIS SWECKER, FORMER FBI ASSISTANT DIRECTOR: Yes, most definitely. They're really improvising now. And with DNA confirmation, you can't get any better. Higher level of confidence in that. So now, you can marshal all of your resources into that area where before they were spreading themselves out quite a bit. So they can concentrate on them and try to herd them in a certain direction, hopefully.
COOPER: I assume the fact -- if one of them is not wearing shoes, does that make an easier to track them with dogs?
SWECKER: I'm not so sure about that. I mean, from what I know about dogs, they will follow the most recent scent in that areas. So if there has been other scents in there that can put them off. But they are at a distinct disadvantage, definitely advantage to good guys right because they are -- this is an endurance test from here on.
COOPER: Shane, in terms of the terrain that you are looking at here, how difficult is it for these guys to move? And again, if one of them doesn't have shoes?
SHANE HOBEL, FOUNDER/OWNER OF THE MOUNTAIN SCOUT SURVIVAL SCHOOL: Assuming he doesn't have shoes, we don't know what they actually took from the cabin. He could be wearing somebody else's shoes at this point. In terms of the terrain, yes, quite difficult. However, this is in the daily with all sorts of hiking trails. There is lots of water ways. You make your way down to the streams. You can travel quite a distance. If anybody knows anything about the woods, all you have to do is bend down just a little bit to the same height of a deer and you would realize how many trails actually exist.
COOPER: But if you don't have experience, I mean, these guys have been locked up for a long time. They don't seem to have -- they're not an Eric Rudolph that necessarily survival training, without that kind of training, the woods can be an incredibly difficult place. HOBEL: Absolutely, a daunting place. And certainly the (INAUDIBLE).
It is massive, it is rouged, and you really have to have a good set of skills. And I have said it before, these guys are going to be moving in and out of urban environments. They are absolutely bound to that umbilical cord of whatever they can find on the landscaping. At this point, it's anything human made. It's the cabin, anything they can get their hands on. It is not coming the woods.
COOPER: John, it also seems and we talk about this before, but so hard to make sure that once you have gone through an area, or cleared an area from law enforcement's standpoint, that I mean, you can't keep assets behind like you would perhaps in a war zone to secure an area. You have to -- I mean, you only have so many assets. So it is very possible for somebody to go back into an area that already has been cleared, isn't it?
CUFF: Absolutely, that is one of the challenges you have to deal with here, you have a porous area, if you miss somebody. That's why every rock, every nuke, every plan is going to be look that (INAUDIBLE). It is going to be very difficult with the challenges that are presented in the woods up there.
COOPER: Chris, you oversaw the hunt for Eric Rudolph, I mean, that was somebody who had real experience out in the woods, no?
SWECKER: Extensive experience. He had planned his getaway for a long time. He had pre-prepared several sites, knowing that he would probably have to go up there and live for a long time.
COOPER: So he had put equipment out in the woods?
SWECKER: Exactly. He had pre-positioned food. He has pre-positioned hideouts. He'd hallowed out areas underground and placed big flat rocks on top him. He knew was he going to be doing.
COOPER: And yet he had occasionally go back in and try to steal things from people, and there were sightings of him in that way.
SWECKER: There were occasional sightings. And we were pretty sure that he was in that area because there hasn't been any credible sightings elsewhere. He would break into places and leave money and pay for things that he took. And that was sort of a signature of his that we didn't publicized.
COOPER: Would he move around a lot or would he stay in locations? ,
SWECKER: He stayed within about a 20-mile area. He stayed off the trails. He wouldn't hit the trails. He knew that is where searchers would be most likely to find him. He moved all the time, almost always at night. And stayed still during the day time.
COOPER: Shane, how - I mean, are there signs that law enforcement look for in a case like this? I mean, obviously, they look for trails and things like that. But are there things that they can keep an eye out on, besides just tracks?
HOBEL: Well, you know, there is not a whole lot of trackers in law enforcement or the military.
COOPER: Is that right, really?
HOBEL: That is true. The level of tracking, by which for the native level of tracking, which is what we teach, they're not utilizing that skill set. They're using dogs.
There is a lot of track in sight. And there is basically nothing in nature can move without disturbing something else. So when you have 800 guys out there, they are creating quite a disturbance in the landscape. And I don't expect these guys to see tracks in the landscape. I expect trackers to see tracks on the landscape.
In terms of the survival, yes, there is definitely signs. The bet down there is the fact that they're using manmade things, the candy wrapper, anything else they're getting from the house. That just tells me about Eric Rudolph. He was a good planner. But not necessarily a good survival expert.
If you're a good survival expert, I don't need to come back in to society. I could stay out in the landscape indefinitely. What they're missing here is the tracks, that link, you find the track, they will lead to that animal or person.
[20:24:57] COOPER: If you don't have you know, bug spray, things like that, I mean, how bad is it out there? I mean, the Adirondacks, there are a lot of insects, there are a lot of mosquitos, you can get pretty eaten up.
HOBEL: Absolutely, but there are tricks, there is tricks in the trade out there. You know, spending some time in the water, there is rubbing mud and clays all over yourself. That also helps. It also reduces your heat signature. There is actual natural outcropping by which they can hide under the thermals, they're not going to see them. So there is tricks. These natural mint keeps the bugs away.
COOPER: Interesting. It is fascinating stuff, Chris, appreciate you being with us. John as well and Shane, thanks so much. I appreciate you being with us.
Coming up next, a prison worker who claims that he was caught off guard by all of this, the scheming, the apparently infidelity, the alleged plan to have him killed. Lyle Mitchell, Joyce Mitchell's husband is speaking up for the first time.
[20:24:42] COOPER: Other breaking news tonight, word that Joyce Mitchell has admitted to being David Sweat and Richard Matt's hamburger helper, putting hacksaw blades into meat, then corrections officers Gene Palmer deliver to Richard Matt. Palmer's lawyer says his client was due to his not part of the escape plan.
[20:30:00] Neither apparently which Joyce Mitchell's husband, Lyle, except perhaps is a potential murder victim.
He spoke at length for the first time about this. Talked with NBC's Matt Lauer.
MATT LAUER, NBC: Tell me where you were and where you first heard that there had been this escape at the Clinton correctional facility where you work, by the way.
LYLE MITCHELL, HUSBAND OF JOYCE MITCHELL: Yeah. I was at the hospital, my wife -- that night before, said she is having chest pains. Next morning I come back in, and we were ready to leave, and we turn the cell phone on. And all of a sudden, we had all kinds of beep, beep, beep, all from our kids and family, the state troopers were looking for us. So when my wife turned it - when she turned her cell phone on, she said, oh my god, Matt and Sweat escaped. And (INAUDBILE) Mr. Mitchell, your wife is more involved than what she's letting on. What? And that's when he said actually it was - she brought apparently two hacksaw blades and a chisel. She said I have something else to tell you, I said what's - she said their plan was they want to kill you. She told me that Matt wanted her to pick them up. And she said, well, I never leave nowhere without Lyle. Never. And I'll give you some pills. They give him to knock him out and then - and you come pick us up. She said I am not doing that, she said I love my husband. I am not hurting him. And then I was over my head.
LAUER: One of the other headlines, Lyle, that came out, was that your wife, Joyce, has had a sexual relationship with one or both of these inmates.
MITCHELL: Absolutely not.
LAUER: Did you ask her point blank this question?
MITCHELL: Absolutely, she swore on her son's life, and her son - I never, ever had sex with them.
LAUER: Isn't it very likely that had you been in the back of that car and had she shown up in that getaway car, that both of you would be dead right now?
MITCHELL: Absolutely. 100 percent.
LAUER: And if she had gotten in that car ...
MITCHELL: She would have been dead within half an hour, I figure. She was just - getaway, they were going to kill her, they were, and all they wanted was that vehicle.
LAUER: Is she a trustworthy person, Lyle?
MITCHELL: I like to believe at times -- in my heart, do I believe she would hurt me? No.
COOPER: So there is that and all of the rest of today's developments. Plenty to talk about with senior legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin. He joins us now. Did that make any sense to you?
JEFFREY TOOBIN, CNN SR. LEGAL ANALYST: I don't think this was the - the people involved in this, I don't mean to be unkind. I don't think there are a lot of geniuses who are involved in this story. I mean, everyone involved in this story is crazy, it seems. I mean, the idea of putting hacksaw blades in hamburger? You know, there was no cake available for a file ...
COOPER: And then not to put that hamburger meat through the metal detector, that seems like a pretty obvious thing to do.
TOOBIN: Well, I mean that and the lawyer was on earlier saying it was because of budget cuts.
COOPER: Right. But then when I confronted him, said, I mean budget cuts, the metal detector worked ...
TOOBIN: It's still there.
COOPER: It was there, and he said yeah.
TOOBIN: I think we can conclude this was not the most well run prison in the United States. And they, you know, it is often the case that guards and inmates develop close relationships. And the smuggling that usually goes on, often the cell phones, that's the thing that inmates usually want. Escapes are pretty rare. But it seems like this Joyce was, you know, clearly involved.
COOPER: It also seems odd to believe that she didn't have some - that their - her relationship with Matt and/or Sweat or both of them did not go beyond just friendship.
TOOBIN: Yes, I mean, her husband seems to think that there was no sexual relationship. But it is often the case that there are sexual relationships between guards.
COOPER: What would else the motivation be if there was not some form of sexual relationship at some point?
TOOBIN: I mean, you are applying logic to a situation that has not had an abundance of logic. But yes, it would certainly seem to be a relationship between her and the inmates would be the basis for this crazy thing.
COOPER: When this comes to trial, can he evoke spousal privilege and therefore, not testify against his wife?
TOOBIN: Having given this interview, no. I mean if he could -- he can -- he could refuse to testify. But that interview could potentially be admitted. And I think once you start talking about things publicly, the -- you run the risk of waving the privilege. So I -- I think in ordinary circumstances, yes, marital communications are privileged. But once you start talking about it publicly, I think you waive.
COOPER: All right, Jeff Toobin, I appreciate being on, thanks very much. Coming up at the top of the hour, we are going to take and in- depth look at the escape and manhunt. Don't miss the CNN special report, "the great prison escape" at 9 p.m. Eastern.
Just ahead, in South Carolina, lawmakers take their first steps to remove the Confederate Flag from statehouse grounds. But ten lawmakers dug in their hills voting against holding debate. And Drew Griffin caught up with some of them. We'll see what happens next.
COOPER: Today, authorities released dash cam video, police arresting the Charleston shooter 14 hours after the massacre at Emanuel AME Church. A law enforcement source says the shooter confessed to police telling them he wanted to start a race war. Instead, he sparked a groundswell he likely didn't anticipate. In South Carolina's Capitol, hundreds of people turned out today and swell turned heat demand that the Confederate Flag be removed from statehouse grounds.
Inside the statehouse, lawmakers introduced two bills to remove the flag, and voted to hold debate, once the final budget is approved. Now, those first steps came just a day after the Governor Nikki Haley said it's time for the flag to come down. It's worth noting, ten lawmakers voted against holding debate. And Drew Griffin did his best to try to track them down and he joins me now. So what was the final vote count?
DREW GRIFFIN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, they did it by voice vote in the Senate, but in the House as you said, they put a name to the vote. It was 103 to just ten, the ten lawmakers in the statehouse who voted against opening debate on the flag, well, they're right here, you can take a look at them. After the vote they mostly scattered. We did catch up with two of them, though, one of them, a man named Chris Corley, a representative from Akin, he was very hungry at the time we tried to pin him down, but listen to what he had to say.
GRIFFIN: Hey, can we talk to you for a second?
CHRISTOPHER CORLEY (R) SOUTH CAROLINA STATE REPRESENTATIVE: No. No.
GRIFFIN: Why don't you want to talk to us?
CORLEY: I will be on the move (ph).
GRIFFIN: Well, why don't you ...
CORLEY: We're trying to figure out where we are going to eat.
GRIFFIN: You think eating is more important than this? Let me ask you, why did you vote not to open up debate on that Confederate Flag issue? CORLEY: Because it needs to be filed in December and it needs to be
debated in the normal process.
GRIFFIN: So you would be for that in December?
CORLEY: Look, I don't want to do it.
GRIFFIN: Don't touch my microphone in a public building.
CORLEY: Get away from me. I don't want to talk to you.
GRIFFIN: You're a public official, right?
CORLEY: I am. I don't want to ...
GRIFFIN: So, are you for or against opening up debate on it no matter when it happens?
CORLEY: I'm for opening up debate on it, yeah.
CORLEY: But I wanted to go through the normal process, which would be filing the bill in December and that's coming back next year and talking about it.
GRIFFIN: OK. Watch your back. And are you leaning one way or another on taking down the flag itself or are you a supporter of that flag?
CORLEY: Well, we're going to hear, you know, from both sides when we have the debate here.
GRIFFIN: And you're not willing to say right now?
COOPER: It seems like a, he was more interested in getting his lunch than talking to you. But also, kind of obsessed with process without actually wanting to publicly take a position on it. Did he say anything else? Or did anyone else talk to you?
GRIFFIN: He didn't say where he stood on it. But another one who did talk was Bill Chumley, a state rep. He is against taking down this flag. He makes no bones about it. We did ask him all about that. But I want you to listen to what else he said. He said this flag should stay where it was put 15 years ago as a compromise. And then in this interview, he said something very strange about the victims of the Charleston shooting. Listen to this, Anderson.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GRIFFIN: You are opposed to opening up debate, is that right, on the flag?
WILLIAM CHUMLEY ( R) SOUTH CAROLINA STATE REPRESENTATIVE: I think this has been settled.
GRIFFIN: Settled in terms of 15 years ago?
GRIFFIN: And you don't think the state has moved from 15 years ago to now, in terms of demographics and feeling of the state?
CHUMLEY: No, I don't think so. I think that the misuse and the miseducation of the flag has probably pushed it to this point. But I think the -- I think the demographics are still the same. My constituents are calling and talking to me a lot about it. And that is the way they feel.
GRIFFIN: But if hate groups have misused the flag and if hate groups have adopted it as its own, and hate groups are certainly creating divisive issue over this, why continue to fly it here at the state capitol grounds?
CHUMLEY: Well, let me ask you a question, why do we let hate groups dictate how we feel and how we live? Hate - everywhere. People are -- there are mean people everywhere, we found that out in Charleston. We're focusing on the wrong thing here. We need to be focusing on the nine families that lived and see that this does not happen again. These people sat in there, waited their turn to be shot. That is sad. And somebody in there with the means of self-defense could have stopped this. And we would have had less funerals than we are having.
GRIFFIN: You're turning this into a gun debate? If those nine families asked you to take down that flag would you do it?
CHUMLEY: You said guns - why didn't somebody - why didn't somebody just do something -- I mean, you got one skinny person shooting a gun. You know, I mean we need to take and do what we can. But that ...
GRIFFIN: Well, I wanted to make sure I'm understanding what you're telling me. Are you asking that these people should have tackled him? These women should have fought him?
CHUMLEY: I don't know what the answer was. But I know it's really horrible for nine people to be shot. And I understand that he reloaded his gun during the process. That is upsetting, very upsetting.
GRIFFIN: Those nine families and every black person in South Carolina and all of the people, the white people who are against that flag believe it should not be on the state grounds. You are saying it should stay because your constituents want it to?
CHUMLEY: It stays there until the people of South Carolina say it should come down.
GRIFFIN: Thank you so much, appreciate it.
(END VIDEOTAPE) COOPER: So, I mean it's hard to understand exactly what he was saying. I guess what he was talking about is gun control and the Second Amendment saying that somebody in that church should have been armed or when he was reloading. Somebody should have rushed them, rushed the shooter?
GRIFFIN: Yeah, it was hard to get clarity from this guy or follow his logic. But to me it seemed to be he was at least criticizing the victims for not fighting back during that attack. What that has to do with opening up the debate to take down this flag, I have no idea. But those are two of the ten representatives in the state who voted against doing that. Anderson.
COOPER: It is interesting how those who do support this, who are state - who are representatives, a lot of them just don't seem to want to talk about it on camera. I mean they don't seem to want to be - I mean he, at least, was giving his position on camera. The others seemed to be kind of scurrying away.
COOPER: I am glad you caught up with at least two of them. Drew, I appreciate your reporting. Just ahead, we have breaking news on what killed Freddie Gray. Details from the autopsy report obtained by "The Baltimore Sun" about the fatal injury he received while in police custody.
Plus, music mogul Sean Diddy Combs charged with assaulting one of his son's football coaches at UCLA. He allegedly hit him with a kettle bell. His reps have a different story. The latest on that ahead.
COOPER: There is breaking news tonight in the Freddie Gray case. According to an autopsy report obtained by "The Baltimore Sun" Mr. Gray suffered a single "high energy injury", most likely caused when the police van he was riding in suddenly decelerated. You are going to recall that Mr. Gray was not restrained by seatbelts after he was loaded into a police van in April. His hands, later his feet were shackled during the ride. And by the time the ride was over he was unresponsive and died a week later.
Six officers have been charged in his death. Joining me on the phone is Justin Fenton, "The Baltimore Sun" reporter and with me is CNN contributor and forensic scientist Lawrence Kobilinsky, of the John Jay College of Criminal Justice. So, Justin, you obtained this autopsy, can you just walk us through the findings?
JUSTIN FENTON, CRIME REPORTER, BALTIMORE SUN: Sure, I mean there's been a lot of talk about how he was injured. There is video, obviously, that showed him appearing to be in pain. And we know that the van made multiple stops, in which he was not restrained inside. This autopsy report shows that they believe it was really a high energy, as you said, impact inside the van. Possibly when he was standing in a crouched position, and that when the van either changed directions or accelerated or decelerated, it caused this really devastating injury to his neck. They compared it to diving into a shallow swimming pool.
FENTON: So, it was this -- they're saying that this one major impact is what ultimately caused his fatal injuries.
COOPER: So that impact, because he was standing and then falling and it was that impact that caused the injury?
FENTON: Yeah, I mean, what is interesting about the report is that the medical examiner is looking at his injuries as you know they don't really know what happened. But they take all the witness statements. They take the video and they try to piece together what might have caused these injuries. And in their opinion, he could have been -- he was put into the van during the second stop on his stomach. But they don't think that -- being on your stomach in the back of a moving van could cause this serious movement, this serious impact that the injuries that happened to his head. You know, they don't think that this could have caused it. They think that he got up at some point and was sort of thrown around the van. And they are saying that the reason that's not merely an accident, but instead a homicide, is because it should have been foreseen. The quote has been reported, it was not unforeseen that someone who was unrestrained in the back of the van could have suffered such injuries and would have required immediate medical attention.
COOPER: Professor Kobilinsky, they called it one high energy injury. As Justin was saying, he was placed on his stomach in the van laying down. Does this make sense to you the idea that perhaps he stood up?
LAWRENCE KOBILINSKY, FORENSIC SCIENTIST: It is somewhat contradictory in a certain sense. First of all, it would require high impact to break cervical vertebrae. The reports where that three cervical vertebrae were fractured. So, it would take a high impact. It would not have happened if he were in that van on the floor on his stomach. Even if he was shaking from side to side, even the medical examiner admits that would not have broken his neck. It would take a greater force. He would have to have been standing, and the fall was what actually did the trauma to the neck and severed the spinal cord. And also, it probably happened after the second stop, but before the fourth stop, just based upon his inability to breathe, and that his limbs were limp after that fourth stop.
COOPER: And Justin, the report also says that Freddie Gray asked for help, but did not receive it. Do we know when he allegedly asked for help?
FENTON: It was during the stops when officers went back to check on him that he asked for help. Then the fourth one, by the fourth one, they said he was unresponsive. And so, as the professor said, they believe it happened sometime between the second and fourth and before the third. And the officers who were charged with manslaughter and murder are the officers who at various points sort of stuck their head into the van and checked on him. They're saying that they should have foreseen that he was injured and needed medical attention.
COOPER: Professor Kobilinsky, how factual are autopsy reports? I mean, how much of this is just kind of supposition?
KOBILINSKY: Well, remember that it is based not only on the examination of the body, but it's also based on eyewitnesses and video and the like. So it has all got to be put together. And I think the problem I'm having is that I don't see an intent to kill here. Depraved, hard indifference is what the van driver has been charged with. If that were the case, I would see maybe police officers putting him in the van and having him stand, and that way he would have fallen and broken his neck.
COOPER: Professor Kobilinsky, good to have you on. Justin Fenton, as well, thank you, Justin.
Up next, music mogul Sean "Diddy" Combs, arrested, facing serious charges after he allegedly swung a kettle ball at a UCLA assistant football coach. His son is on the team. What do his representatives have to say about the accusation when we continue.
COOPER: Well, hip-hop music mogul Sean "Diddy" Combs is out of jail on bail, after he was arrested on various charges, including assault with a deadly weapon and making terrorist threats. The alleged weapon, a weight room kettle bell, Diddy is accused of attacking one of his son's football coaches at UCLA. Stephanie Elam has more.
STEPHANIE ELAM, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Instead of an entourage, Sean "Diddy" Combs got a police escort to jail Monday, this after the 45- year-old reportedly swung a kettle bell at the UCLA football strength and conditioning coordinator, Sal Alosi. Combs' son, Justin, is a junior at UCLA and a red shirt defensive back on the team. The music and fashion mogul can be seen here, his hands cuffed behind his back as he enters the Twin Towers correctional facility in Los Angeles. No one was seriously injured in the scuffle, but Combs was arrested at the university's Acosta athletic training complex for assault. He was later transferred to the Los Angeles County sheriff's department. The university later upped the charges to three counts of assault with a deadly weapon, one count of making terrorist threats, and one count of battery. Comb's camp, however, expects the charges will be dropped. A statement on Combs' RevolTV (ph) website reads quote, "the various accounts of the events and charges that are being reported are wholly inaccurate. What we can say now is that any actions taken by Mr. Combs were solely defensive in nature, to protect himself and his son. We are confident that once the true facts are revealed, the case will be dismissed."
It was not odd for the elder Combs to be seen around the athletic complex. Take a look here at this TMZ Sports video of him on the sidelines of a UCLA football practice in April. In a statement, UCLA football coach Jim Mora called the altercation, quote, "an unfortunate incident for all parties involved." Just a day before, Combs posted this picture on social media, including his son, Justin, with the caption, quote, "father/son football game. We won. Happy Father's Day." Combs posted bail and was released later that night. He's scheduled to be in court on July 13.
Stephanie Elam, CNN, Los Angeles.
COOPER: That does it for us. We'll see you again 11:00 p.m. Eastern for another edition of "360." The CNN special report, "THE GREAT PRISON ESCAPE," starts now.