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Interview With Wayne Newton; Treasury Secretary's Air Travel Raises 'Concern'; Las Vegas Massacre Investigation. Aired 3-3:30p ET
Aired October 5, 2017 - 3:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
PATRICK YORK, TAI CHI STUDENT: Everything is engaged but not stressed.
DANIEL HOOVER, SCHOOL OF HEALING MARTIAL ARTS: Because it's practiced slowly, a lot of people have discovered the healing benefits.
DR. MICHAEL IRWIN, DIRECTOR, UCLA MINDFUL AWARENESS RESEARCH CENTER: Tai chi improves our psychological health. And if we have depression, anxiety, sleep problems, it improves all those problems. The practice of tai chi overtime alters the underlying physiology in such a way that we're more resilient and we're less likely to develop chronic diseases of aging.
HOOVER: We all need a practice, tai chi or something else, that allows us to slow down.
BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN ANCHOR: Top of the hour. You're watching CNN. I'm Brooke Baldwin. Thank you so much for being with me.
None of us still know the answer to this key question of why. Why did this twice-divorced, high-betting retiree decide to commit mass murder?
But now we know he originally wanted to survive this. Police say he had an escape plan, and that the letter they found inside his hotel room wasn't a suicide note.
Police say the gunman stockpiled his arsenal for months and months, 50 pounds of explosives and 1,600 rounds of ammunition. And that was just found in his car in the hotel parking lot.
Meantime, his girlfriend tells the FBI she had no clue of his murderous plan, but police insist he couldn't have possibly pulled this off by himself.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOSEPH LOMBARDO, CLARK COUNTY, NEVADA, SHERIFF: When you look at the weapon-obtaining, the different amounts of Tannerite available, do you think this was all accomplished on his own?
Self value -- face value, you have got to make the assumption that he had to have some help at some point.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BALDWIN: We just heard from first-responders who revealed the chilling confusion as they tried to figure out what was going on.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GREG CASSELL, CLARK COUNTY, NEVADA, FIRE CHIEF: If you have ever had an opportunity to sit on a call taker's panel and listen to a citizen, another person in absolutely, sheer terror for their life, for their loved one, those men and women at that dispatch office did a phenomenal job.
They are heroes that just sat in one building and handled the phone calls, but they are heroes because they handled the business, they got people to where they needed to be. They handled the needs and resource requests of us as a fire department and as chief officers looking for our help. I have to applaud them, as they did a tremendous job.
As far as the reports of those other hotels, what that does is that complicates the matter. We know we have got a lot of things going on here in the immediate area around that concert venue. But when somebody -- you get a 911 call saying we have got shots fired at Caesars Palace or we have got shots fired at a hotel as far away as Spring Mountain, that complicates our response.
What is going on in our town? Is this a single event or are we now under a Mumbai-style attack where we have got multiple things going on in multiple properties? So, we had to handle that.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BALDWIN: That confusion can now be seen in this new video taken by a city worker showing terrified concert-goers trying to escape.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Get down.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Those are shots. Run. Those are shots. Run! don't walk!
Run. Go! Go! Go! Everybody, go! Go! Run! Keep your head down! Go! Keep your head down! Go! Run! Keep your head down!
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BALDWIN: And look at this. This is what the scene still looks like today, these aerials views showing all that was left behind, this area strewn with abandoned belongings still considered a crime scene.
Let's get straight to Brian Todd, who is live for us there at the scene.
And so, Brian, what are you learning about the possible plans to target other music events?
BRIAN TODD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Brooke, today, we learned -- we actually learned this last night from Sheriff Joe Lombardo. Police telling us that Stephen Paddock rented a room at the Ogden Condominium here in downtown Las Vegas the same weekend as the Life is Beautiful Music Festival.
The Ogden Condominium overlooks that concert venue. That was the weekend of September 22. That was a Friday. Also September 23, 24, that Saturday and Sunday, he rented a room there. It's not clear where Paddock's room was in the Ogden Condominium.
But we do know that condominium was right in that area where that concert venue was. We also have information from Chicago, from a spokeswoman for the Blackstone Hotel in Chicago, that a person matching the name Stephen Paddock rented a room, reserved a room at the Blackstone Hotel in Chicago.
That Blackstone Hotel overlooks Grant Park. That's where the Lollapalooza festival was to take place in August. And someone matching the name Stephen Paddock reserved a room at the Blackstone Hotel in August.
Now, the spokeswoman says it's not if it is the same Stephen Paddock as the Las Vegas gunman, and the person never checked into the room. So that is what we have now as far as what we think may have been some of this planning for other events, Brooke.
But this is pretty chilling to know that at least he rented a room here at the Ogden Hotel, basically a week before the shooting here in Las Vegas, and that he had a room basically that could have been overlooking that concert venue here in Las Vegas.
BALDWIN: Makes you wonder how many different music events perhaps he thought about, if this actually has nothing to do with country music and about Vegas.
We're left wondering for now. Brian Todd, thank you so much.
We're also now getting a clearer look at exactly how the timeline of events unfolded. Let me walk just you through this. It was 10:05 p.m. when he fired the first shots -- 10:12, two Las Vegas police officers makes it to the 31st floor.
One radios that he can hear automatic fire coming from the floor above them -- 10:15 p.m., he fires his final shots, which are recorded on an officer's body cam.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
(GUNSHOTS) UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Get down, get down, get down!
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Where are you? Where are you?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Go, go.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BALDWIN: Then, at 10:17 p.m., the two officers arrive on his 32nd floor.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LOMBARDO: OK, the officers and the first strike team reached the 32nd floor within 12 minutes, which is phenomenal, of the first shot being fired.
When the officers arrived and confirmed the location of the suspect's room, the gunfire had stopped.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BALDWIN: Police say from 10:26 to 10:30 that night, eight more officers arrive on the 32nd floor and moved down the hall, clearing the rooms along the way.
And then, at 11:20 p.m., SWAT officers used explosives to breach his suite, and inside, that is where they find him inside on the floor dead. All told, it took 75 minutes from the start of the shooting until officers breached the room and found his body.
Chris Carroll is with me, retired lieutenant Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, and Matthew Horace, former ATF executive.
So, gentlemen, thank you so much for being with me.
Chris, starting with you just on the news from Chicago -- and, again, we don't know if this is the same guy, just has his name, in the hotel that overlooked where Lollapalooza would have been, the fact that the sheriff says he potentially cased out that other music venue, Life Is Beautiful, in Las Vegas.
If you're police, are you just casting a wide net at hotels and major music venues across the country in the last year trying to figure out motive?
I can't hear you. Is it just me? OK.
Matt, did you hear my question? Can you answer that, while we work on Chris' audio?
MATTHEW HORACE, FORMER ATF AGENT: Well, I think it's very clear that the suspect here had method and he had motive. He also, with those, had it -- it transcended distance and geography. So, investigators are going back now and checking his credit card
receipts, his social media, and through that and banking records, they will determine where in the United States he's been, what he's charged, where he stayed and for how long.
BALDWIN: That's what it is.
We're also learning that this shooter was planning this escape. Right? So many people thought there's no way he could have thought he'd escape this sort of scene.
Investigators aren't giving much details. A letter or some note was left in a hotel room. Not a suicide note.
Just, Matt, staying with you, because I don't know if Chris heard my full question, what do you think leads investigators to thinking he would had to have had help?
HORACE: Well, there's two schools of thought.
BALDWIN: Sorry, audio fun, live television.
Chris, if you heard me, let's take turns. Chris, go for it.
CHRIS CARROLL, RETIRED LAS VEGAS POLICE LIEUTENANT: OK.
As I heard your last question, they're wondering about him having help.
CARROLL: Sheriff Lombardo has said that there are things that lead them to believe that there was help. Of course, at this point, we don't know in what capacity that was.
Just off of speculation, I would think it has something to do with getting all of his guns and ammunition up from the ground to his hotel room in a relatively short period of time.
BALDWIN: You don't think he could have done that by himself over the course of a couple days with some suitcases?
CARROLL: I think he could have done it by himself, yes.
But, obviously something new has come to light. Maybe it's video. Maybe they have talked to somebody. But there is information out there now. And I believe the sheriff said it was only a possibility. But something has come up where there appears to be -- show that there may be somebody else involved as well.
BALDWIN: Matthew, there was also in his car the ammonium nitrate, right, found there. A subsequent search shows 50 pounds of some other explosive material, Tannerite.
Does that signal to you that he had, how shall I say this, bigger plans?
HORACE: Right. Yes, well, clearly, he may have had bigger plans. But then when you incorporate the fact that police think that he also planned to escape, he was dealing in some level of delusion as well. This was a well-calculated plan, but he didn't cover all the bases.
And exactly what happened, what was going to -- he was not going to make it out of that room alive.
BALDWIN: So you can be -- everything else we're hearing, though, very meticulous in the plan and the accrual of the 33 rifles over the course of a year, you can be delusional and meticulous at the same time?
HORACE: Absolutely. And we see it all the time. The best laid plans of criminals always fall apart at the end.
BALDWIN: Chris, the girlfriend. Let's talk about the girlfriend. She's back from Asia. She's been questioned by authorities in Los Angeles. She released a statement vis-a-vis her attorney, saying she didn't see any signs that he was planning any kind of violence.
Sheriff Lombardo said his gut feeling is that the Vegas shooter had, as we've been talking about, some help in carrying this out. No concrete evidence of that yet. But she thought she was being sent away because he was breaking up with her. She says she saw nothing, knew nothing.
CARROLL: That's certainly possible. It is possible, because he's accumulated these guns and ammunition over a period of years. It's not like all of a sudden at one time you see a red flag where a guy who goes and buys thousands of rounds of ammunition.
I don't know exactly -- we know it's his girlfriend, but I don't know how close they were, if they lived together, how frequently they see each other. It's certainly a possibility that she was sent out of the country, so that he could carry this plan out without her getting in the way or calling the police.
BALDWIN: And just quickly, again, the accruing of all the rifles in multiple locations, can you hide all of that from someone potentially?
BALDWIN: Go ahead, Chris.
CARROLL: Just because it's -- it doesn't need to be hidden where she can't see it. He probably has gun safes and so forth with the equipment in there that she knows it's there. But it may just be his collection.
Like we said, if this has gone on over years, just because he had that many guns and that much ammunition doesn't mean that it was necessarily a red flag to her, because she's seen this over years.
BALDWIN: Chris Carroll and Matthew Horace, gentlemen, thank you so much on the investigation piece of this.
Next, we are going to pivot back to our breaking news out of the White House. The line from Sarah Sanders was that they're open to the conversation on banning those bump stock devices that the shooter may have used. And the NRA with a statement just in this last hour seems to be getting on board with that. We will talk live to the Republican congressman who says President Trump needs to take the lead on the issue.
Plus, the man known as Mr. Las Vegas joins me live. Wayne Newton has now met with some of the victims, the survivors of that mass murder, donated $100,000 to their recovery fund. We will talk to him about how his beloved city moves forward.
BALDWIN: This is CNN. I'm Brooke Baldwin.
Las Vegas helped to make his name. And now Wayne Newton, Mr. Las Vegas himself, is trying to help his city heal after it became the site of the deadliest mass shooting in modern American history.
The legendary entertainer has been consoling a number of the survivors this week. And he insists Las Vegas will not be defined by what happened.
Wayne Newton joins me now from Las Vegas.
Mr. Newton, it is so nice to see you again, though I'm so sorry about the circumstances.
WAYNE NEWTON, ENTERTAINER: Well, thank you, Brooke. I, too, am so sorry about the circumstances. But it's so nice to talk to you again. Thank you.
BALDWIN: It's my understanding you have talked to a number of the survivors of Sunday's shooting. Can you just tell me a little bit what that was like for you and what they shared with you?
NEWTON: Well, what it was like for me is that I'm still numb from it, as I think most Las Vegans are. How does one explain that kind of evil happening?
As far as the people who have been injured, those families that have lost a loved one here, the thing that remains constant is the first thing that they bring up in the conversation, is how immediate the first-responders were in terms of what they would have expected, how they and other members of this community, actually citizens from all over the world that were at that concert, certainly started to run and then turn back to help those that were less fortunate, having been affected by the gunshots and those kind of things. So they were just talking about the kind of kindness and dedication
that the citizens of Las Vegas have.
BALDWIN: Yes. Wayne, where were you late Sunday night, and how did you hear?
NEWTON: Well, I was coming back from Texas. I had gone there for a show, a benefit show with a dear friend of mine.
And we had just landed in Los Angeles, because I had meetings Monday morning in L.A. I went to bed. My wife couldn't sleep, so she got up and turned on the television, and awakened me. And we watched the coverage literally until we could charter a plane and get back home. So, we got back home early Monday morning.
BALDWIN: We're learning a bit about the shooter in terms of how meticulous he was, how many dozens of rifles he bought, the fact that apparently he cased out the Life Is Beautiful Music Fest in Las Vegas. What's your reaction to all of that?
NEWTON: Well, I believe that anyone that's that evil will find evil deeds to do. And this fruitcake was no exception.
This could have happened anywhere in the world. And my fear, frankly, now is not necessarily about our city, because we will recover from this. We stay strong and we stay committed and we do everything we can to help. But this kind of forethought and things that he went through to plan this become kind of a copycat thing I think throughout the world.
So, how can one even for a second think of somebody jumping in a truck and driving down the French Riviera and killing people?
BALDWIN: I know. I know.
NEWTON: It just -- if they are of mind-set to do that, there's no way to stop them.
BALDWIN: A special place in hell, a special place in hell.
NEWTON: A special place in hell. He's got a seat waiting for him.
BALDWIN: People may not realize this about you, but you, Wayne Newton, grew up in country music. And your first performances were actually at Opry shows. Are you at all in touch with those circles and hearing any sort of shift in conversation as the conversation has gone there -- we were just listening at a White House press briefing -- to gun control?
Do you think people at all in those circles are changing their minds on guns?
NEWTON: Well, I really wouldn't know about that.
In terms of the country musicians and performers I have talked to, they were devastated by it, but the country community are really some of the most dedicated Americans that we have in our country.
And as far as leading it into a political issue, like gun control or any of that kind of thing, we did not discuss that. But the one thing that I know is that when any person of the sort has a mind-set to do something like that, if it's a gun, if it's a truck, if it's an airplane, if it's a bomb, they do it.
So, I'm not sure where all that will lead, but I hope it will be positive.
BALDWIN: Lastly, sir, you donated $100,000 to the victims fund. You performed two days after the shootings. It would have been understandable for you to cancel the show, but it's really important to you that the show went on. Tell me why.
NEWTON: I will tell you why. cause if God has given us as performers any talent at all, it is to be used in times like this to lift people's spirits, to make them smile again maybe, to make them forget the kind of evil that went on here last Sunday.
And I believe that we as performers have that responsibility. We took a night off, as did a lot of performers in this town, to show our respect. But then I think it was really important that we get back to what we do, and that is to try and bring a modicum of happiness into people's lives, even if it's just for that two hours.
BALDWIN: We need it. Las Vegas needs. Mr. Las Vegas himself, Wayne Newton, bless you. Thank you so much for raising your voice.
NEWTON: God bless you. Thank you very much, Brooke.
BALDWIN: Thank you.
Just in to CNN, the final report on the use of private planes by the U.S. treasury secretary, what it found about potential wrongdoing. We will share that with you.
And this is what we were talking about here, the White House now saying today they are open to conversations about a ban on so-called bump stocks for some of these guns. Republican Congressman Tom Rooney joins me live to discuss where he stands on the issue. Stay here.
BALDWIN: Here's some news just into CNN.
The I.G., the inspector general, has just released its findings on the Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin's air travel on government planes. And while they say no laws were broken, the I.G. did have some issues. So let's figure out what those issues are. CNN government regulation
and aviation correspondent Rene Marsh is here. What did the I.G. found?
RENE MARSH, CNN AVIATION AND GOVERNMENT REGULATION CORRESPONDENT: Yes. So, you said the top line there. They say no violation of law in the simple requests and uses of these aircraft, but Steve Mnuchin did not get off scot-free.
The report shows just how he had run up quite a tab for taxpayers with seven flights on government planes. The inspector general's report also dinged him for what is essentially flimsy justification for the use of these government airplanes, and the inspector general