hello, i'm wolf blitzer reporting from washington. i want to welcome in our viewers in the united states and from around the world. -- captions by vitac -- www.vitac.com we begin with breaking news the suspect is in custody after a massacret at a historic church in south carolina. the chief says it is a result of everyone working quickly together. >> this case could not have been cleared as quickly as it has been if it had not been for the cooperation, the unparalleled corporation of all of the different agencies that were involved in the investigation. i cannot say how thankful i am
and how ap preesh yapreciative i am of all of the people who came together in a tragic situation, a horrific situation, and one that has touched the heart and soul of every person who lives in this community. >> authorities say that 21-year-old dylann roof was arrested in shelby north carolina during a traffic stop. earlier they the released this picture of roof from police surveillance. they say that he spent an hour in prayer before shooting the people. the people included in the shooting were three males and six females. three people survived the shooting, and among those killed were the church's pastor the reverend clementa pinckney and he was also a south carolina state senator, and prominent civil rights activist. the shooting at the church is being investigated as a hate crime. a friend of the pastor who was killed says that it was. >> anyone who would go into a
church, and of course, race is a factor, and this is a young white male and historically african-american church, and commits this type of act, it is a hate crime, and it is is hate and pure hate. one of the things that we have to take this moment that we have to yuzuse this moment for is to the heal as a country and not just south carolina, but it is the united states. >> just a short time the ago president obama responded to what he called the senseless murder s murders in charleston. he said that this incident is especially tough to the come to the grips with. >> to say our thoughts and prayers are with them and their families and their community doesn't say enough to convey the heartache and the sadness and the anger that we feel.
any death of this sort is a tragedy tragedy. any shooting involving multiple vick victims is a tragedy. there's something particularly heartbreaking about a death happening in a place in which we seek solace and we seek peace in a place of worship. >> the president also said that the tragedy should revive efforts for stronger gun control in the united states. the shooting turned a place of sanctuary into a scene of terror. now let's get some perspective of healing in the community from our correspondent john berman, and john, tell us more about how
the suspect was apprehended there. there. >> he was apprehended about three hours away from where i am standing in shelby north carolina. that is mother emanuel episcopalian african-american church. it began about 14 1/2 hours ago when this suspect came in and lingered here in this average wens wednesday night prayer meeting and he lingered for about an hour before he opened up fire, and sources say that he did say at the time that he wanted to kill black people. nine people dead, six women and three men, and the only victim whose ide the ti that we know at this point, the reverend clementa pinckney and also a state senator, the and also a man who has two young sons, and so many people that i have
spoken to on the streets here they know him so well and they miss him so badly especially today when they need leaders to heal this community. it set off a frenzied manhunt here all through the night. streets were shutdown until he was apprehended. and about an hour and a half ago, there was a press conference here in charleston, and martin savidge who is here with me, he was there at the press conference and what did you learn? >> i was there and i talked to the police chief mullen who was extremely worry died and i asked him how he was doing, and he said very worry died, and as anyone knows anyone who would go into a house of worship and kill people was on the street, they knew that the longer this manhunt went on they knew that a violent showdown would increase, and remarkably, the way that the
arrest went down was one police officer in shelby north carolina and by a tip that came from a person who just called in and said hey, a suspicious vehicle here and comes down to the basic communeity involvement, and local law enforcement, and traffic stop and apparently cooperative, and most thankful no further loss of life in all of this. >> was he armed a at the time? any incident in the arrest and any word of how he got from here to four hours away in shelby north carolina? >> all the questions i put to the e chief, and he said that he cooperated so it implied a peaceful arrest and no violence and doesn't appear to be any struggle and he was inside of the vehicle and there was a weapon confiscated, and that is all they will the tell you about the weapon, and not that it is a rifle or handgun and not that if it is the weapon that was used in the attack at the church and now they stop short of any details that is going to be in
the prosecutorial part. >> and now, what about this man who walked into the lexington area. >> and they said he was not on the watch list, and we had not been following him, and local law enforcement was not aware of him, and nothing significant and a couple of arrest, but nothing of significance to suggest that this would happen. and they believe that he acted alone. i asked if it was a conspiracy and they said, no, they believe it was him, am only him. >> and what was the success of the law enforcement to get the footage and then identify the man in the footage and then get it to the media,ed and they were thanking the the media for getting this image out, and thanked the public for everyone's assistance in the investigation. >> they said it from the beginning, and look we want to
inform the public and inform the media and most of all we want to get your help to get the word out. that is is the way it went down. clearly someone up there in north carolina had heard about the incident and maybe knew about the identity of the vehicle, and that is what tipped them off. it was a suspicious vehicle reported, and that is what brought the police, and that is how it all came to an end. >> the next step is extradition back here from north carolina to south carolina and that is not going to be overly complicated. martin savidge on the investigation, and new details coming in. wolf back to you. >> thank you, john and martin savidge, thank you both. and we will get back to you. meanwhile, the mourners and those shocked by the events, they gathered at churches around the state the of south carolina to unite in prayer. in charleston morris brown ame chur church hosted the gathering for those who wanted to pray or come to grips with the violence that rocked their city.
alee alina machado is on the scene joining with more, and how is it going over there, alina? >> well, wolf, things are starting to wrap up here, and i have to tell you that there is all of the talk for the need of unity the follow gre following the tragic event. and what you are seeing is hundreds of people gathering inside of the morris brown ame church for prayer vijgil and when it ended people stuck around outside. what you are seeing is the area of overflow and incredibly hot out here today, and they offered people a place to go down the street that was cool but everyone e decided to stay here. they sang together. they are mourning together and they are praying together. there are people here as you can see from what is left of the crowd, and people here from all walks of life, and all ages and races and backgrounds, and they are all saying the same thing. when i asked them about the
reaction to the fact that dylann roof is in custody, they expressed relief of that and they are also saying that the healing here is going to take a very long time. i spoke to one woman in particular who said something very, very defining here of this moment and she said that even though she hates what he is accused of doing that she can't go on hating him as a person, wolf. >> all right. alina, very, very sad time over there, and thank you. the pastor of the african-american episcopal chump was one of nine victims of the shoot g shooting, and he is being remembered. flowers resting on the desk of clementa pinckney in the united states senate and he was the youngest black person ever elected to the legislature in the state of south carolina, and the church that pinckney led was steeped with historic significance as he explained in 2013. >> where you are is a very special place in charleston.
and it is very special place, because this church, and this site this area has been tied to the history and life of african-americans since about t the early 1800s. this church was built in 1891. the congregation was formed in 1818 by the reverend morris brown who later became the second bishop of the african methodist episcopal church. and for you who know about the denomination we started in 1887 through our founder richard allen who left then st. georges episcopal church because they told him to pray after the regular members prayed, and that is how the nomination began in a
fit of civil disobedience and a little issue with the theological fairness, if you will. >> and we are just getting this into cnn and we are have learnlearning the names of two more victims. tyanza sanders is a graduate of allen university in columbia south carolina, and he is the youngest victim and the reverend pinckney the state senator, and he was also a graduate of allen university in columbia south carolina and among the others who were killed sharonda who was a speech pathologist and a track coach who was seen here with her son. and we are sending is our deepest sympathies.
up to daiday and the heart and soul of south carolina was broken. >> nikki haley the governor of south carolina very, very emotional moment for her, indeed for everyone watching not only here in the united states but indeed the around the world. the police in south carolina say that the attack was in fact, a hate crime, and the shooter saying that he simply wanted to
kill black people. in responseb bernice king who is the daughter of martin luther king jr. said that we must interrupt business as usual and change the trajectory of the nation, and the soul of the nation must be saved #charlesshoot ging. and the best path to the save our nation is through nonviolence, and it is more than a tactic but a lifestyle, and that what she tweeted, bernice king. and the ceo of the king center is on the phone right now. bernice, i know it is a sad moment, and your father, martin luther king was very familiar with this church in south carolina, and the tell us about that. >> yes. i mean doing the whole quest for voting rights, and he had the opportunity to the visit the emanuel ame church to raise the awareness of voting and getting
people involved in all of the mass demonstrations of the voting rights and so that chur church was one of his stops as a part of that. >> it is the oldest black church in the southern part of the united states. a lot of history there. and when you heard about this hate crime today, bernice, what went through your mind? >> well -- well let me just say this wolf the first thing that really ran through my mind is that we have to find a way in america to change the culture of vie violence that all of us, i think, have a responsibility to look at what we are doing to the perpetuate it and how we can change it. but as i was thinking and it, i reflected back 41 years ago on june 30th, my grandfather, and my father's mother who was killed by a gunman and by a
gunman who said that he was on assignment to christians and he had my father on the list, but just happened to slain my grandmother who was saying the lord's prayer and i just happened to go back to that period and fast forwarding to 41 years later, and looking at the fact that we are at a serious crossroad in this nation. we must do something to change the value system in the culture and begin to really highlight the importance of life all life and especially right now with a lot of the black lives which says there is no sake ret place or safe place for black life even in the context of the church. so i continue to push as my father did the philosophy of the nonviolence, and it is because it is not just a social justice tool or tactic but it is a way
of life. it is as more of us embrace it as a way of life we can relieve some of the vieolence we are seeing in the nation and world ultimately. >> you heard president obama bernice, speak out emotional lyly from the white house, but he also used it as moment once again to speak out in favor of more gun control in the united states saying that in rather blunt terms that what happened here doesn't happen in other industrialized countries, because of the availability, i assume he meant, of guns. are you with the president on this? >> i agree on it wholeheartedly but i also say that while we work on gun control, we also have to work on changing our lifestyles, because at the end of the day the, even when guns go away if they ever go away there are other methods that people can utilize to exercise physical acts of violence, and
so it is really about nonviolence 365 being permeated throughout our culture, and we are involved constantly at the king center in educating and training all individuals in my father's philosophy and methodology in the way in which we engage our lives on a daily basis and social movements. >> bernice is this going to result in greater security and armed guards at historically black churches around the country? >> i really can't speak to that. i mean, it may. at least for a temporary period of time. i remember when my grandmother was shot and this is unheard of in 1974 when she was killed at our church. we had to bring in metal detectors for a period of time and obviously, during that time period there was not a lot of killings in our communities, period but people were so
traumatized that even they heard some kind of pop in the church you know people would jump. so i think that for a temporary period of time it sis probably something that many people would look at doing, and not just in the african-american churches that they may consider that in all churches, because it seems that we are violating the lines and blurring the lines between what is sacred and what is not. >> bernice king is the chief executive officer of the king center in atlanta, and the daugt daughter of the late coretta scott king and the late martin luther king jr and i wish that we were speaking on different circumstances. >> thank you, wolf. and we will also speak to the memory of the pastor
clementa pinckney one of the victims of victims of this heinous, heinous crime. now if you had a liberty mutual new car replacement, you'd get your whole car back. i guess they don't want you driving around on three wheels. smart. new car replacement is just one of the features that come standard with a base liberty mutual policy. and for drivers with accident forgivness,rates won't go up due to your first accident. learn more by calling switch to liberty mutual and you can save up to $423. for a free quote today,call liberty mutual insurance at see car insurance in a whole new light. liberty mutual insurance.
one of the things that i have seen so far here tonight is everybody praying together, and it didn't matter what color you were and everybody pray ging together and joining hands, and we are going to the continue to do that. >> and pastor clementa pinckney has been identify edied as one of the nine victims of the church shooting massacre in south carolina and he was also a state senator who championed change after the shooting of charles scott who was an unarmed
black man who was shot in the back by a white policeman. and as reform, he stepped up to call for an end to police corruption. >> we need a better, more comprehensive and fairer tax system but most importantly, we need every person in south carolina needs to know that they will have equal protection under the law, and that a badge and a gun is not going to give someone superiority or will trump their constitutionally protect eded privileges and rights in south carolina. >> joining us now from charleston is the reverend john paul broun, pastor of the mount zion ame, and pastor pinckney's chur church is only four blocks from where this massacre occurred and again, i wish that we were meeting under different circumstances, and first of all, can you tell us about your friend. >> first let me give thanks to
the leadership of our bishop, bish bishop richard franklin norris, and to the community and to chief mullen and also to mayor riley and governor haley for what they have doenne. senator-reverend pinckney, and i became his pastor when he was a little boy in richmond where he grew up and he was just studious and at the age of 10, he was helping us to teach the young kids in church school. at 16 he aspired to the ministry and came forth and presented himself and went off to college for training. but his whole life had been given to the ministry, and service, and his legislation which you will look at in the south carolina senate was all geared at helping people. it is not a day that he took off
to make sure that other people was cared for. my wife who was one of the conference director ypd, young people drekirectors of the state, groomed and nurtured clementa, and we just loved him. he was special. >> how is the community handling it if you are just at the vigil now, pastor, and now, give us a sense of the feeling going on there. there. >> the feeling right now, you would not believe the outpouring of love from across the nation, president obama, vice president joe biden, the bishops of the ame church, the ecumenical community, and the church is packed and out here and the community is rallying and the
statement is that whatever this fellow was intending to do is intended to divide us as a people as a nation as a group as a kuncountry, and lo and behold he has no idea of what he did. he has unleashed outpouring throughout the nation that we are even seeing cnn and everybody else is here that have never been here maybe, but the idea is that there is so much love that the hardship will come in the coming days when trying to put this thing together for the families that have to make funeral arrangements for those who have no closure, and for parents who will try to explanin to their children, and children's children what took place, so while we are in the midst of hurting, we are urging healing, and so right now, we are focusing on the victim rather than the emotional and the backlash of what might come. we just want to thank god and
thanks for the people, and we are grateful for the news media because without it we could not get it out. we owe y'all a grateful thanks and you would not believe what the outpouring of love and pray g praying together has been. it hassle helped us, and we have not had a great time to take everything in. it is an emotional roller coaster right now. tears and joy and tears of hurt and aingenger and back to tears, and then thank you for the life of such a person. >> reverend john paul brown who is the pastor of the mount zion ame church in charleston the and reverend thank you so much for the important, important words and we will stay in close touch with you. >> thank you. thank you. >> thank you. and we will continue with the breaking news here in cnn. and in washington the justice
department is investigating the shooting as a hate crime. what does that mean? we will talk about that and get the latest information from the justice department when we come back. hi, my name is cliff. i'm tom. my name is eric. and i help make beneful. i help make beneful. i help make beneful. after working here, there's no other food i'd feed my pets. each ingredient is tested by our own quality insurance people. i see all the quality data everything that i need to know that it's good for my dog. there's a standard. and then there's a purina standard. i make it and i feed my dog beneful. i feel proud because i know that i helped make that bag of dog food sitting on that shelf.
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in the united states and around the world. i'm wolf blitzer reporting from washington. updating the breaking news at this hour the arrest of the suspect in the horrific shootings in south carolina. police say that dylann roof was arrested during a traffic stop in shelby, north carolina. roof is accused of opening up fire in a prayer meeting and church bible study. we got in new picture of the suspect's car in north carolina, and you can see that the police have it cordoned off and in all six females and three males were killed in the shooting. he told one woman that he was sparing her life so she could tell the story. and among those killed was reverend clementa pinckney and also a state senator and prominent community activist and also taiwanza sanders who
was a student, and also sharonda singleton was a track coach at goosecreek high school, and she is seen her with her son. let me quote now. this is a crime that has reached into the heart of the community, and those are the words of the attorney general loretta lynch who announced a while ago that the justice department has opened up a hate crime investigation into the shootings at the ame church in charleston south carolina. let's go to our former fbi director tom fuentes and also our analyst evan and what are
you seeing here? >> well, when he stood up to say he wanted to shoot black people that is making it a hate crime, and they are historically the subject of diskrimcrimination, and that is what he is going after, and that is what the witnesses told the police that were there, and obviously, there is a parallel investigation of south carolina authorities who have nine murder charges that they would like to pursue against this suspect now, and the fbi and the detectives from the charles charleston south carolina police department are going to try to interview him to what he was trying to do. >> and tom fewuentes, former director of the fbi, and he was also not only a hate crime, but practically speaking, what does it add? >> well, not much. in this case if he is facing nine death penlalties in south carolina for the murders of the
people in the church, that is the most severe exposure that he would have, let's say, if he is charged with a hate crime federally, it adds to it but you can't, and how many times can you kill him if he is facing the death penalty, and there is not much he can do and there is a harder additional element to the prove what is in his heart and head when he was killing, and he did make the statements and social media postings and not as difficult as in some cases, because it is clear that he had an anti-black attitude. >> and he has been wearing a jacket that are showing him with the jacket of the old apartheid era flag of south africa and the old rhodesian flag, and that is part of what the fbi is looking at, and if he has links to the supremist group ss, and his name is not one name that is coming up that authorities have seen wolf. >> seeing if somebody else is potentially involve and how he got the weapon. we are told that his father may have given him that pistol to
for a 21st birthday weapon. >> yes, and similar to the isis wannabe nanabe investigation. and did someone direct him? there are hundreds of white supremist groups in the country alive and well and the fbi has a terrorist group, the ku klux klan and the aryan brotherhood, and the order, and the neo confederate groups springing up and neo-nazi groups are alive and well, and 70 years after the death of hitler, and so this is nothing new for the fbi to be address ing addressing. >> and yes, wolf to, be clear, he is facing nine murder counts in state court, but the federal government feels that they need to send a message to all of the groups that tom is talking about, that south carolina and the south in general has a history of very long history and painful history in this area, and it is a state that still flies the confederate flag over the public buildings while they
elected an african-american to the senate, so it is a very complicated history down there, and the fbi and the justice department want to make sure they send a message as well, that it is being treated in a different way. >> and this is the message that the attorney general loretta lynch said to categorize it as a hate crime. >> they will devote as many analysts and fbi to this case des ig designated hate crime or not as soon as the chief of police asked for fbi help, thaey were on the scene that night, last night, and the hundred ss of the agents and the analysts nationwide were already going to be dedicated to this case and it really all it took was a request for the assistance, and now, later if they determined it is a federal prosecution versus a local prosecution, that is go going to be up for discussion with the department of justice and with the state authorities. >> i assume they have to beef up security for the churches? >> na their call, and they will doing it in some of the parts of the country, and new york police chief said they are doing it already
already. >> this is a sad moment in the united states indeed. thank you, guys so much. the shooting at the ame church brings up the importance of the church, and it became in 1818 the first african-american episcopal church. it was founded as a protest against discrimination. later it was burned to the ground after an angry white mob after one of the church leaders was accused of instigating a slave mob riot. but the church known as mother emanuel rose from the ashes to become a beacon of hope in the civil rights movement in the american south. the king center tweeted out this center of martin king jr back in 196 1962, and then coretta scott king led the call for equality for worker ss from the church's steps.
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church and was a regional manager who spent 31 years with the library, and the library going to be closed today and tomorrow. and our deepest condolences toily and t the families of all of the victims. and the president said that he and the first lady know several members of the church, and spoke of the horror and the sadness is of the lives lost. and he said that this is the 14th time that he has had to speak out to the nation about mass shootings. >> i had to speak out about traj tragedies like this too many times. and communities have had to endure tragedies like this too many times. we don't have all of the facts, but we do know that once again innocent people were killed in part because someone who wanted to inflict harm had no trouble getting their hands on a gun.
now is the time for mourning and for healing, but let's be clear, at some point, we as a kuncountry, we have to reckon with the fact that this type of mass violence does not happen in other advanced countries. >> let's go to the senior white house correspondent jim acosta who is joining us now, and the president is clearly moved by what is going on and using this tragic and very, very sad moment and feeling the need to speak out on gun control in the united states. >> yes, and you will recall that he has talked about this time and time again, wolf from the ft. hood shooting in 2009 to the shooting that almost took the life of congresswoman gabby giffords, and the aurora shooting, and the shooting in newtown, connecticut, and that is the day that the president described as the worst day in
the presidency, and the list is on and on and he has had to talk about it repeatedly and he tried to get gun control, and you heard him make reference to it in the remarks in the briefing room, and he said because of the politics in this town, he is not sure that something like that is achievable, because they tried it before. and they tried to close the gun show loophole with the mansion-toomey amendment, but the president saw that vote go down in the senate and he stood inside of the congress in the state of the union speech, and he said that these people from these mass shootings, and the victims from the mass shootings deserve a vote, and he went down the list of the mass shootings in the country the, and he said that these victims deserve a vote. they didn't get the vote they wanted wolf and it is an issue that has confounded the presidency in his time in the office but in the last couple of minutes the white house has provided to us a list of the phone calls that he and is the
vice president have made to the people down in south carolina and according to white house official the president has talk tod talked to the mayor in charleston, mayor riley, and the white house leader todd he's made calls to the mayor of charleston as well as a couple of other religious figures, including a bishop at ame there in charleston which had this terrible shooting. he's talked to a bishop at that church as well. it's all hands on deck here at the white house, wolf. officials have been scrambling dealing with this all morning long and it's an issue that they have dealt with before and i suspect, wolf with a year and a half in the president's time in office before he leaves this white house, he'll have to deal with it again. wolf? >> i suspect you're right. let's hope he doesn't have to deal with it and we don't have to deal with it either. jim acosta thank you. more of the breaking news coverage coming up. cnn's don lemon just arrived in charleston. we're going to speak with don and get his impressions when we
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a day of grief of sadness in charleston south carolina. the community vows to come together in the aftermath of this tragedy. cnn's don lemon is now on the ground in charleston just got there a little while ago. don, you know the community in charleston. you know the history of this predominantly african-american historic church. tell us about the grief down there. it must be so powerful. >> reporter: yeah. a church which has really gone through a lot. and now the community is going through these things as well. it's palpable when you drive in here and when you get into the airport. everyone knows why we're in town. and when you drive up to the scene, this is where we are, a tourist spot here in charleston. it's erie to see some people out and about. it's palpable. you're exactly right.
i see community members out. they want to talk to the media and want people to know about what's happening here and they want people to know that this should not happen anywhere. this church that's over my shoulder here is a safe haven for the people in this community. it was deemed as a safe haven. and especially for those who had been dealing with unjust from police officers from what happened with mr. scott not long ago, not being shot in the back here this is a safe haven for that where they could go and talk about it and where the reverend himself was trying to help out with that legislation as well with walter scott and other members of the community. so heavy hearts here. right where we are, it's sort of becoming a gathering spot where people are coming to talk to the media and really just to sort of
feel that they have some sort of communion here. they can't believe this has happened wolf. >> it's hard to believe in this day and age, he had south africa apartheid on his facebook page. people are tweeting me saying this is not mass murder a hate crime, it's an act of terror. your thoughts? >> reporter: i agree with them. it's an act of terror. listen i think that newtown was an act of terror. when you have people praying on people this man, he targeted black people here. he targeted a certain group.
he got himself into the church and then allegedly said you know what i'm here to shoot black people because you are raping our women and taking over our country. that is an act of terror by any definition. >> all right. don, we'll stay in close touch with you. thank you very much. that's it for me at this hour. i'll be back at 5:00 p.m. eastern in our international room. for our viewers in north america, cnn's special coverage of the church shooting continues right after a quick break. nobody told us to expect it... intercourse that's painful due to menopausal changes it's not likely to go away on its own. so let's do something about it. premarin vaginal cream can help it provides estrogens to help rebuild vaginal tissue and make intercourse more comfortable. premarin vaginal cream treats vaginal changes due to menopause and moderate-to-severe painful intercourse caused by these changes. don't use it if you've had unusual bleeding breast or uterine cancer blood clots, liver problems,
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hello. i'm monica cabrera with special coverage of the shooting in south carolina. >> reporter: and i'm john berman live in south carolina. right behind me is the ame church the pillar in this community and state for well over 150 years and it's where last night nine people were murdered. they were murdered by a man who police believe they now have in custody 21-year-old dylann roof was taken into custody this morning in shelby, north carolina which is a 3:45 drive from here. they