Return to Transcripts main page

ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES

Updates on Las Vegas Massacre Investigation; Police Release Bodycamera Video; Husband of Shooting Victim Speaks; CNN exclusive: Russian Linked Facebook Ads Targeted Key States of Michigan, Wisconsin. Aired 9-10p ET

Aired October 3, 2017 - 21:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: -- just a moment here in Las Vegas, authority is expected to brief reporters and the public on the progress they have made, the latest on the investigation since thousands of shots rained down behind me. As we wait for the press conference to begin. I want to quickly go to CNN's Kyung Lah, because what we know so far, so what more do we know now about the run-up to this?

KYUNG LAH, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: We know he was very methodical. We about the planning, according to the sheriff, he planned for this for a very, very long time.

COOPER: Collecting weapons?

LAH: Collecting weapons, especially if you look at the weapons history. But perhaps, most startling in what we learned in the last news conference from the sheriff were these cameras, cameras that were inside hotel room, cameras that were in the hallway. The sheriff explaining that the reason he had these cameras out here is because he wanted to see when law enforcement would be approaching, about the outcome and that was very clear, Anderson.

COOPER: And I mean, it seems like he -- I mean, I don't know if it was the cameras that gave him the warning that law enforcement was approaching. Because there was -- he did fire at law enforcement when they initially came.

LAH: And you're absolutely, right. What they did discover is that they did have that exchange. He was alive on that first contact. It wasn't until that second contact after that exchange of fire so that's when they discovered that he took of his life.

COOPER: If it's (INAUDIBLE) with this point, how much time -- because there was that exchange of fire, then the first team that was off there backed off basically, I understand they got people away from the rooms in the surrounding rooms. Do we know how long the gap was between that and when the SWAT team actually arrived to breach the door.

LAH: It's a little unclear as far as the tick-tac. We know that was approximately 72 minutes from when the actual shooting begin on the crowd to when they were able to reach the room. So that timing is still a little bit murky.

COOPER: Right. Still so much that we don't know about obviously motivations and things like that.

LAH: Absolutely. And I think that's perhaps most frustrating. And you know from having covered unfortunately so many of these, we simply have -- don't have a clear motivation as of yet. And that's why these constant news conferences -- that's the question that keeps coming up over and over again from reporters, what was the motivation.

So they try to focus on the guns. What we now know, 49 guns accumulated from three different sites. And we went to one gun shop in Utah. He went to Arizona, California, Nevada, we went to Utah and spoke to a gun shop owner and here's what the gun shop owner told us.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CHRIS MICHEL, OWNER, DIXIE GUNWORX: Every regulation -- federal regulation that is in place, he passed. He passed right through them with no problems. He passed all of our background checks here in the store. He passed every red flag that could have popped up. But it's still there. It's still something that I'm still going what else could I have done better, what could I have done? There's nothing.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

COOPER: He has a sense of guilt obviously.

LAH: Even though he sold him a shotgun. That's what I found remarkable. He sold him a shotgun, the weapons that were found that we've seen so far, the high-powered rifles. So I found that quite extraordinary. And he says what we have to understand is that we cannot vilify gun shop owners. Guns are legal in the United States through some checks. There has to be a conversation about it. He says that gun shop owners should try to see those red flags, that he missed something that's why --

(CROSSTALK)

COOPER: And that's the thing, I mean, there are no criminal record that we know of with this guy. Do we know much about the girlfriend?

LAH: That's what -- you know, we all want to know about this girlfriend. She's in the Philippines. We understand she's cooperating. She's a person of interest. We heard that clearly from the sheriff. She lived with him not just in his --

COOPER: I'm told the press conference is about to begin. Let's listen in.

UNDERSHERIFF KEVIN MCMAHILL, LAS VEGAS METROPOLITAN POLICE: I'm going to provide you the final briefing for today. And as promised in our last briefing, we now have the LVMPD.com site up and running. It's a page list of resources available to our victims, our family representatives of victims involved in the route 91 Harvest Festival shooting. Information on the site includes instructions on how to report information if you are a witness, important phone numbers on how to provide photo and video evidence as soon as we have information on how to retrieve lost property. As the sheriff told you previously, we'll post that on the page as well.

After this incident, one of the most striking visuals in addition to the absolute carnage was the sheer amount of personal items left behind as people fled from the terror. One of the biggest items left were vehicles of the concert goers.

So for those people that are waiting to get that property returned to them, I have an update. There's a dirt lot on the corner of Giles Street, G-I-L-E-S between Ali Baba and Mandalay road. There's approximately 150 vehicles over there that citizens have not yet been able to be recover. Those cars can now be picked up by the registered owner by meeting officers at the corner of Reno and Koval. We'll have officers permanently assigned there post to that corner to escort you to your vehicle.

[12:05:04] So again, we ask the owners of those that had patiently waited to get them back to meet our officers at the corner of Reno and Koval. Bring your identifications so we can match you back to your vehicle.

The sheriff in the previous press conference was asked a number of questions by you. And I understand in the insatiable appetite of the media that you want some answers. I'm going to try to answer a couple of those questions that you asked. But I'm also going to just make it very clear to you that I need some patience from you.

This investigation is a long time from being concluded. We recently went down to the Mandalay Bay. I can tell you that we're days away from completion of the processing of that room. We're getting very close to the completion of the processing of the site. We have a significant amount of time left there as well. However, the southbound portion of Las Vegas Boulevard is now completely open.

We are also working diligently as we speak. I believe we just opened up two of the northbound lanes. And the completion of the northbound lanes should occur sometime this evening.

So bearing in mind that the investigation is dynamic, ongoing, continuing, and I don't have a lot of answers for you yet. And clearly understanding that nobody wants answers to why more than the police and the victims' families. But we have a responsibility to get it right, and so that's why it's going to take time, and that's why we're going to take that time.

However, there's some, I guess, at best interesting reporting about how long the shooting lasted and how long it took us to get into the room. First question is how long did the actual shooting last? I'm prepared to give you information on that. And the first call came into our dispatch center at 10:08 p.m. about shots being fired.

The suspect, I can tell you that we know now that he fired off and on for somewhere between nine and 11 minutes. We know that the suspect fired over a dozen or so volleys, and we know that the firing by the suspect ceased at 10:19. So I want you to think about that. The minute -- the first minute the police are aware of shots being fired at 10:08, and it stops at 10:19. That's a remarkable response by this police department.

Also, another question that came up, how long was it before our SWAT team entered the suspect's room? Somebody said you heard that it was 72 minutes and if why so long. As I just mentioned to you, as the sheriff mentioned previously in the briefing, we had patrol officers actually working another event at the Mandalay Bay who heard the shooting and they took it upon themselves to form up into a team, enter the stairwell, begin ascending the floors, and also evacuating hotel guests.

The SWAT team had to arrive first at the Mandalay Bay before they could take any action. As I mentioned earlier, there was a very heroic security guard who was shot during the search for that suspect. That security guard went up to the room, he was advancing towards the room when the suspect fired through the door at the security guard and struck him. He was able to provide additional information to the police on exactly which room we were looking at.

However, at that time, it's important to note that the shooting had stopped. We're considering it a barricade at that point because there's no longer inactive shooter. We're not hearing any further shots. The floors had already been evacuated of the guests. The suspect was now isolated and contained within a room.

At the point that the SWAT team made their decision based on when it was appropriate to enter, I want to make it clear, again, to you that while there was that slight delay, the suspect was no longer firing into the crowd. There was a question about the validity of the crime scene photos that somebody had leaked. I can confirm those are in fact photos from inside of the room. They are in fact photos of our suspect, and as the sheriff mentioned previously we have all opened up an internal investigation to determine the source of the leaks of those photos to the public.

You asked what we found in the sheriff -- or in the suspect's room and the sheriff spoke a little bit about cameras being located. To clarify, there were two cameras located in the hallway so that the suspect could watch as law enforcement or security approached his room. And there was another camera placed inside the hotel room door peephole so that he could see down the hallway.

[21:10:00] At this point, you had a number of questions about the weapons and the SAC from the ATF to my right, Jill Synder will answer or provide a statement to you, but not take any questions.

JILL SNYDER, ATF: Good evening. I'm Special Agent in charge, Jill Snyder of ATF San Francisco Field Division. Special Agents from the San Francisco Field Divisions Las Vegas Field Office responded to the shooting that occurred on Sunday.

Additional agents from other locations within the San Francisco Field Division as well as agents from ATFs Los Angeles, Dallas, Phoenix, and Boston Field Divisions have been working on this investigation.

We know that you have many questions regarding the firearms in this case. There's also been a lot of unofficial information being recorded -- reported regarding the guns. We'd like to clear up any conflicting information regarding the number of firearms and the current status of the trace information.

Please understand that this investigation is ongoing and I won't be taking questions at this time because we're still working through all of our investigative findings, but I'll give you the facts that we have as of this time.

Currently, 47 firearms have been are recovered. These firearms were recovered from three different locations. Those locations consisted of the hotel room, as well as Verde and Mesquite, Nevada. They were purchased in Nevada, Utah, California, and Texas. The gunman purchased rifles, shotguns, and pistols.

At this time, none of the guns recovered appear to be home made. There were 12 bump fire stocks identified on the firearms in the hotel room. The ATF Firearms and Ammunition Technology Division provides determinations on devices such as bump fire stocks and their legality.

The classification of these devices depends on where they mechanically alter the function of the firearm to fire fully automatic. Bump fire stocks while simulating automatic fire do not actually alter the firearm to fire automatically, making them legal under current federal law.

It is still being determined which firearms were used in the shooting. All of the firearms have been traced. We are still awaiting results from some of the firearms that were located at the Mesquite residences. As the investigations proceeds, ATF will continue to conduct interviews and provide our resources and full support to the sheriff and all our local law enforcement partners. Thank you.

MCMAHILL: Thank you. As this investigation continues on, we continue to hear stories of heroics by police officers, first responders and average citizens alike. I commend all of their actions as they showed immense courage in the face of extreme danger.

I want to mention one of those brave people was Las Vegas Metropolitan police officer Charleston Hartfield. Officer Hartfield was at the route 91 concert that night along with his wife when shots rang out. Even though Officer Hartfield was at the concert as a civilian, he immediately took action to save lives.

In that moment he was acting as a police officer. He ultimately gave his life protecting others. Officer Hartfield was an 11-year member of the LVMPD and leaves behind a wife and two children. We're grateful for his sacrifice.

There will be a vigil to remember of Officer Hartfield this Thursday, October 5th at the Police Memorial Park at 6:00 p.m. As you all know that park is located at 3250 Metro Academy way and it's being hosted by our police protective association. As this community has become accustomed, we do provide information and regards to our critical incidents. We release body-worn camera footage to you. There's a significant amount of body-worn camera footage that we're going through.

However, I'm going to play a clip on our new very large monitor for you of a compilation of a number of those body-worn cameras. You'll see that the officers were dealing with some uncooperative citizens at times, but at all times they were trying to locate the source of the gunfire as well as evacuate those citizens that were in the line of fire.

[21:15:01] I think the video will speak for itself. So if you'd like to, I'll try to narrate just a little bit for you as we go through. But Carlos (ph) if you could play that for me, please.

That wall faces Mandalay Bay and they are hunkered down behind that wall after an initial bullet of shots.

(OFF-MIC)

MCMAHILL: At this point they're still trying to figure out where the rounds are coming from.

(OFF-MIC)

MCMAHILL: They're talking off of official helping down to a patrol vehicle on Las Vegas Boulevard. One of our officers gets shot.

(OFF-MIC)

MCMAHILL: This video is of security. You notice the officers were wearing those yellow reflective vests. That's what you're actually seeing.

(OFF-MIC)

MCMAHILL: Very difficult to tell from that video, but they officer is actually standing over another woman.

(OFF-MIC)

MCMAHILL: When you see have a vest on.

(OFF-MIC)

MCMAHILL: So before I take some questions, I understand that the Coroner is here now. Oh I'm sorry, I was looking right back to John. This is John Fudenberg, Clark County Coroner.

JOHN FUDENBERG, CLARK COUNTY CORONER: Thank you, Undersheriff. Again, I'd like to just start by saying that my condolences go out to all those that are involved in this incident, specifically the family and friends who have lost loved ones in this incident.

I would like to provide you some information -- some updated information on what's happening at the Family Assistance Center at the convention center. We have work fully operational all evening, all through the night. And tomorrow at noon, we'll make a determination whether or not we're going to be open 24 hours going forward. But at minimum, we will be open from present time to 5:00 p.m. tomorrow.

So we're still fully operational to answer any questions the families may have, any friends of the families. And I would also like to clarify we are not releasing property at the Family Assistance Center. That is as the sheriff mentioned earlier, that is going to be released. There's -- they're developing a plan currently to release that property in the future, and I'm certain that will put out during one of these press conferences.

I'd like to also discuss some of the numbers that we've been dealing with over here. I had that question earlier by multiple media outlets. I -- it's estimated we've served well over 1000 family members and friends there at the Family Assistance Center. We're providing all sorts of services to include bereavement services, and our staff at the Clark County Coroners office has been meeting with every family that comes in there. And I'd like to again, thank them.

They are an amazing group of people and they've been doing an amazing job in serving these families. I think everybody except for the families would consider this a huge success at the Family Assistance Center and rightfully. So I think the reason the families may not is because if they are waiting one minute longer for us to provide the information that's too long. So they have been very patient, I appreciate that. And I just want to send a message to them that we are doing everything we can to communicate with them and get them the information that they need. If they want to come down to the Family Assistance Center, we're there to receive them and communicate with them.

[21:20:30] If they're not able to attend the Family Assistance Center, I'd like to provide you with a phone number that has been previous published and that is within the State of Nevada, 211, outside of the state of Nevada that's 1866-535-5654. We have call takers standing by to take missing persons reports. I believe that's tailored off quite a bit.

Today, we have received over 3,000 missing person's reports. And I'd like to clarify what that means so people don't misreport the intent of that number or the intent of me giving you that number. That by no means that we have 3,000 people missing.

We believe that all 59 of the deceased are identified. Tentatively we're working on positively identifying the rest of them and we believe that will happen by the end of this evening. We estimate in between 9:00 and 10:00 p.m. So, that's very normal for us to receive an excessive amount of missing person's reports following an incident like that.

So, again that be no means we have outstanding missing persons. We have very detailed manifest and we believe that everybody involved in the incident from the decent standpoint is accounted for and we're waiting to communicate that with the families. So, I'm available to answer questions you have.

I have limited time to answer questions so I'll take a few. Yes, go ahead.

(OFF-MIC)

FUDENBERG: Excuse me?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Everybody who died and (INUADIBLE).

FUDENBERG: Yes. The majority of them did. I'm not at liberty to tell you whether or not all of them did died as a result of gunshot wounds simply because I don't know at this point.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: How long we could -- a list for names of those?

FUDENBERG: I'm working with the Metropolitan Police Department to develop that list, and we'll make that public. I would imagine that's not going to happen until the earliest tomorrow morning.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The three victims of the shooting (INAUDIBLE) have not been identified is that because their families does not mean to come and describe they will finish in time.

FUDENBERG: We have -- as I spoke to earlier, we have tentatively identified them, but we're working on some confirmation issues, and I'm confident they will all be identified. We believe we know who every single one of them is. It's just a matter of confirming that. We don't have the liberty to make mistakes.

So, we've got to get this right, as the Undersheriff mentioned earlier we've got to get this right. So we need your patience and we're going to work through the night to get that right and I'm hopeful that we'll have all those confirmed by tomorrow morning and the families notified. Yes, sir?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sir, you said the majority died of gunshot wounds --

(OFF-MIC)

FUDENBERG: I don't believe so, but, again, I can't confirm that right now.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Mr. Coroners have you completed an autopsy from Mr. (INAUDIBLE).

FUDENBERG: I'm not going to speak to examining date of the details of the examinations at this point.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Have you completed it?

FUDENBERG: Excuse me?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Have you completed it? FUDENBERG: Again, I'm not going to speak to any of the details of the examinations at this point, primarily out of respect for the families. And I hope you understand that.

Yes, did you have a question?

(OFF-MIC)

FUDENBERG: Well, that's quite a lengthy process, but in a nut shell, the families of the decedents will make arrangements with the local area mortuaries and they are the folks that provide details and provide the transportation back to their home states.

Yes, one last question if you would.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: -- percentage of how many victims from local and how many are (INAUDIBLE).

FUDENBERG: I don't have that estimation but we're putting that together and we should have that by the time our list is finalized and confirmed.

(OFF-MIC)

FUDENBERG: It does not. Excuse me, could you -- I'm not sure I understood that and I want to give you accurate information

(OFF-MIC)

FUDENBERG: No, no. We have 58 dead plus the shooter for a total of 59.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And when you release the list, are you going to post it online at the same time you (INAUDIBLE).

FUDENBERG: This is the last question. I don't know.

[21:25:02] UNIDENTIFIED MALE: OK.

FUDENBERG: But that will be announced through one of these press conferences probably later today or most likely tomorrow at some point. And that's all the questions I'm going to take. Thank you very much for your time.

(OFF-MIC)

FUDENBERG: I can clarify the 59. We have confirmed 59 dead in our office. Yes, 58 plus the shooter for a total of 59. And that is confirmed. OK, thank you very much Undersheriff.

MCMAHILL: You're welcome. Thank you.

KEN: Mr. Undersheriff back into --

(OFF-MIC)

MCMAHILL: I didn't call on you first, Ken (ph), but go ahead.

KEN: Is there another death somewhere else? We were told previously 59 plus one.

MCMAHILL: Yes. But remember we also told at you that the numbers of dead and wounded will continue to fluctuate, so the answer the corner provided you is the most recent relevant number we have.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Undersheriff, is there any indication that he was planning something else a couple weeks beforehand in your investigation are you seeing that?

MCMAHILL: No. I'm not prepared to speak about that, but that is part of our investigation.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Undersheriff, with the knowledge that -- Philippines, possibility he is been (INAUDIBLE) in the Philippines and knowing the current flight in the Philippines, are you absolutely ruling out any connection to terrorism or anything like that?

MCMAHILL: We haven't absolutely ruled anything out in this investigation. What I can -- just the -- listen, I'm not trying to coy, right? But I can confirm to you we have not ruled anything out.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I mentioned --

MCMAHILL: But I also confirmed that we have not ruled that in. So we have a lot more questions than we have answers today.

(OFF-MIC)

MCMAHILL: I understand that, we're well aware of that. I'm sorry go ahead sir.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Can we get an update on any of the electronics that have bring with --

MCMAHILL: I'll get back to you when we have it. It's not a simple process, it takes at the same time and we have guys working diligently on that for us. Let me finish before you ask, all right? Thank you. Go ahead.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you have information whether the shooter trained himself to fire these weapons? Did he visit gun ranges? How did he train himself to fire this?

MCMAHILL: Right, so the question is do we have any information that the suspect had trained himself in firearms? I'm aware that online reporting as well. We have not been able to confirm any of that information yet.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Is there a theory on why the gunman stopped shooting? Did he see officers outside? Or is there's a timeframe?

MCMAHILL: The investigation will obviously reveal that. I believe personally because the security guards approached to the room, obviously took his attention away and he fired at the security guard. And then the immediate police response that followed on.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Undersheriff, tell me bout what you're hoping to learn from this family when investigators speak with her. How will that investigation -- how will that interview help advance in the investigation?

MCMAHILL: Great question, I can't reveal that because we don't know yet. We have a lot of questions, I can tell you that.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: -- on the timeline, the SWAT team entered around what time? And what point of the shooter back in --

MCMAHILL: Yes. The question is can I give you the exact time that SWAT entered. I was hoping to provide that to you today. I'll provide that or the Sheriff will provide that in the next briefing.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: But there would some --

MCMAHILL: There is a delay because he was not firing anymore. We treated the situation as a barricade at that point.

(OFF-MIC)

MCMAHILL: I don't know what the time was. I'm working on trying to verify that information about when SWAT actually made entry, via both radio communication and body-worn camera communication.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: -- who came to the door with the security guard with the SWAT team?

MCMAHILL: The SWAT team is not a normal SWAT team. It was made up of both SWAT officers, patrol officers, and a K-9 unit.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Undersheriff, on the same information that panic may have check into the (INAUDIBLE) on the day before he check in Mandalay Bay, is that accurate in your point?

MCMAHILL: I can't confirm that information now, but we've heard that same allegation.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Undersheriff (INAUDIBLE) she's in the Philippines. Do people have talked with her to ask them and from (INAUDIBLE) answered question, when she does.

MCMAHILL: The question is, is Ms. Danley coming back to the country, and we're aware of some information, but not prepared to release that at this point in the investigation.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Is she in custody?

MCMAHILL: I take two more, back here.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Can you at least confirm the reports that he wired $100,000 to an account in her name, in Marilou Danley's name?

MCMAHILL: Right. The question is, can we confirm that $100,000 was wired to the Philippines? The answer is no. We have financial subpoenas that the FBI has put out, remains an active part of our investigation. We certainly want to know the answer on that question.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Can you confirm what time the security officer was shot that approached the door?

MCMAHILL: You know, it's just moments prior to our initial officers responding up there, so we'll add that to the questions that we can answer again tomorrow. And with that I'm going to say this to you.

[21:30:01] I apologize. I forgot to introduce the Special Agent in charge of the Las Vegas Field Office, Aaron Rouse. And it's just been such great partners with us through out this investigation. And as you know, we've been joined at the hip from the very beginning as well.

I'd like you to just make sure you pay attention to our elected officials from across this great state and here locally, Congressman Kihuen, and I'm sorry General (INUABDIBLE) was here and of course County Commissioner Chair Steve Sisolak. They've been instrumental in supporting our organization throughout this. And we need it. There's a lot more questions than there are answers. And we will provide those to you just as soon as we can. Thank you.

COOPER: You heard the latest there from authorities including -- you just saw police body cam video, a gun fire erupting from above. You get a sense of the confusion as officers were trying to figure out exactly where the shots were coming from, from the Mandalay. Behind me, you heard about the bump fire slide stocks identified weapons in the hotel room according ATF.

Joining us now is retired FBI Supervisor Special Agent James Gagliano, also Former Assistant Secretary of Homeland Security, Juliette Kayyem is with us as well.

To me, one of the most interesting things is sort of the timeline breakdown, that the shoots -- this guy was shooting for about nine to 11 minutes they say, which sort of the answer to the question about why they waited for SWAT team to come in order to breach the room because it was no longer that he was not an active shooter. He wasn't actually firing. It was -- then it was a barricade situation?

JAMES GAGLIANO, CNN LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: Right, Anderson. What we know about active shooter situations usually, usually, interdict by the first time by the police between three to 10 minutes.

COOPER: Right. The FBI e has done a study of like every active shooter situation since Columbine and they find most the deaths occur within those first minutes.

GAGLIANO: And that was the big After Action Review lessons learned from Columbine because at that point if you didn't have a homogenous SWAT unit, a team that worked together, police were left to inner folks that time where we've learned post-Columbine is you can't do that. COOPER: Right. The Columbine, they basically made a perimeter waited for SWAT and even then they waited and some of the people like the teacher, the centers bled out after lying on the floor after four hours.

GAGLIANO: The lessons learned from this and I have to give kudos and credit to the Las Vegas Police Department and their Sheriff's Department. As a former FBI SWAT team leader, and a member of the FBI Hostage Rescue Team, what happened with the initial assault, the first guys that got up there within the 11 minutes, that probably took the attention of the shooter away from the two windows in his barricaded situation, and that slowed him down.

Now, it goes from a hasty assault which was what they were doing to a deliberate assault as soon as he stops shooting because the only reason you would make a dynamic entry is this, first thing, stop more killing. Second thing, if it's a hostage situation. We didn't believe there were hostages inside.

The shooting had start, now you take a step back put together delivered plan, you bring in folks that have explosive breaching capabilities. Now, I'll tell you we're in the hotel, those doors are steal doors with steal frames. Those are difficult to enter without explosive --

COPPER: And what we don't know at this point is, and thank goodness the shooter did stop, but why the shooter chose to stop? You know, there was the initial confrontation. He shots through the door at the hotel security guard.

GAGLIANO: Right.

COOPER: We just learned the police were there, the first responders are there, but then -- I mean theoretically -- we don't know why he didn't continue firing outside that window.

GAGLIANO: What we know so far, OK, we know that he had weapons that run by bipods and they were positioned in two doors and he created the perfect death funnel down there. But we also know that -- you mentioned before the bump sticks that were used, these are after market products. And unfortunately they are not illegal right now because they do not permanently modify the weapon.

It's not like you're spieling down the sheer, or doing something to make it fire fully automatic. You jam the stick in and it keeps it open, the bolt open so it continues to cycle --

COOPER: It is a work around to make a fully automatic?

GAGLIANO: It is a work around, absolutely. So, in that situation, maybe there is a weapon malfunction, maybe because of the crazy sustained rate of fire.

Remember an M4, the automatic weapons like that they can fire 750 to 900 rounds per minute. That heats the barrel up, possibly a jam. And then also, he probably wanted to go back and forth because these people were panicking not knowing where the shoots were coming from. He move to one side, he funneled people back this way, move to the other side funneled back this way, keep them in the kill zone.

COPPER: Juliette, it's fascinating though that this person and we don't know what level of training he may have had, it didn't seemed to have a military record as far as I've heard. But had the presence of mind to have camera set up in the corridor, two cameras according to authorities to see law enforcement coming and also a camera in the peephole, which I guess allowed him to fire at the security guard through door.

JULIETTE KAYYEM, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: That's exactly right. And, you know, since we don't know a motive yet, maybe to memorialize what he viewed as a sort of the moment of heroism. However, he and his mind view this, that he wanted to memorialize this act for himself or for the future.

[21:35:13] I have no doubt that we will eventually see some of those videos. We've already seen some of them. And just, you know, sort of -- I want to just say about that press conference, my two big takeaways, just from the last hour Anderson when we were together. One is they are back tracking a little bit on the girlfriend. Remember, earlier today they said she was on route. The sheriff would not confirm that now.

You know, I have my focus on her and I don't know where she is or -- and the $100,000 that they would not confirm, whether a $100,000 had been spend to her. So, we don't have official verification that she's in fact on route or that she got this $100,000.

The second thing is, of course, I want to get my numbers right, 47 firearms, 12 bump stock devices. Bump stock devices, you heard the woman from the ATF, and I forget her name, I apologize. She was sort of twisting and turning trying to define what the pump stock device does and doesn't do. She says they don't mechanically alter the gun, therefore they're not illegal.

Even an ATF person finds it hard to explain how these are use in any way, expect for to alter the experience and therefore the impact of a semiautomatic to an automatic. And so, while we're talking about the, you know, the motive, we also need to really talk about these bump stock devices, the 12 of them. How were they obtained? Why were they obtained? And why are they lawful on the market? No one can -- not even the ATF woman could gave -- speaking at this press conference gave anything but I'd have to say sort of a contorted explanation for why they're legal.

And I guess, the definition is they don't mechanically alter the gun. That just -- that's not passed in any straight phase test at the stage, especially after a massacre.

COOPER: And Juliette, also -- I mean to what we were talking about a moment ago, the idea that, you know, the initial team that is up there helped it change from an active shooter situation, he stopped firing out into the crowd, directed fire at the first responders. But then, according to authorities now, did not continue firing outside, which is why they were waiting for the SWAT team to arrive to actually breach it in the most -- in the safest most professional way possible.

KAYYEM: That's exactly right because remember, there's communication probably ongoing at this time. While they're having him in a right position, in other words, he's not shooting at the stage. They don't know whether there's IED or something else set up that when they open the door the whole place explode.

They have no idea. So their situation awareness is simply we have now stopped the killing. But remember, this is dynamic because down below as we saw in the video, the police are moving everyone out of what we've been calling this fish bowl. So, as much -- you know, even if they only got five minutes, 20 minutes, 25 minutes, they are moving people out of the line of fire. So there's two things going on, both holding him in the hotel room and moving future victims or potential future victims out of the way. So, it sounds all right to me just based on our experiences of other mass shootings at this stage.

COOPER: Yes. The Undersheriff a moment ago talked about how this killer built himself a kind of armed bunker or gunner's nest in that room. James Gagliano mentioned this as well. I do want to bring Tom Foreman who is then looking in this in our virtual studio, Tom?

TOM FOREMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, we knew that he had this commanding view of the strip and the concert area over here from this 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay. What is emerging though is very picture of a man who built sort of a fortress up here, and a trap for any police who tried to come and get him out of this suite of room. Look, pretty big space up here.

When we talk about the hallway, the funnel of death, one of the people shared awhile ago, that's what we're talking about right here. One hallway approaching this area. That's where he had two cameras outside, one hidden on a room service cart in this hallway, the other one aiming out of a peephole in the door, right there to look right down the hallway. And that's the only way police officers could have approached this room.

And inside the room, what did he have? He had n arsenal spread out through all this place. He had more 20 guns, we now know that 12 of them were set up with these bump stocks so he could fire like automatic weapons. Some of them had these bipods on them which allow them to be steady better for shooting over a longer distance.

Remember, you're shooting 400, 500 yards, that's quite a distance out there. Some of them had powerful scopes on them. You can see where he sort of set up a little receptacle here out of the furniture to put them inside there and he had a tremendous amount of ammunition.

In this shot, if you look right along there, you can see some of the magazines stacked right there. And this is one of the windows he was shooting out of here. So he used this hammer to smash out some windows. Look, we're going to the front door right here and you can look where he did this.

[21:40:03] If we change our shot and move in, you can see if you're in that front door and turn right, right next to the pillar that's where he smashed out one of the windows. And then he smashed out another one a little bit further down. And from these positions, Anderson, that's where he had this absolutely commanding view of everyone down below. And as we were told now, he spent nine to 11 minutes raining bullets down upon these people. Anderson?

COOPER: It's just sickening. Tom, thanks very much for that, Juliette Kayyem as well and James Gagliano.

Coming up, a couple married for 32 years. They were enjoying traveling during retirement until this trip his wife, his high school sweet heart died in his arms. We're going to talk to him next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

COOPER: The breaking news tonight involves the killer and his weapons. We really want to keep the focus there on the stories that in the end matter of so much more. In the last hour we brought you Heather and Sonny Melton's story. Sonny saved heather's life but it was fatally wounded.

Right now we want to tell you a little bit about Denise and Tony Burditus. They were enjoying a weekend here away from their home in West Virginia. They had been married for 32 years. They were childhood sweet hearts. I spoke with Tony earlier today.

(BEGIN VIDEOCLIP)

COOPER: Tell me about Denise. You guys were high school sweat hearts.

TONY BURDITUS, HUSBAND OF SHOOTING VICTIM DENISE BURDITUS: We were. We're met in high school and married (INAUDIBLE) thereafter. We've been married 32 years.

[21:45:00] Denise always had a smile on her face and Denise never met a stranger. She -- you could be in the grocery store line and she start talking you to or at a concert with 20,000, 30,000 people and she would be talking --

COOPER: She was making friends as long as she get.

BURDITUS: Absolutely.

COOPER: Yes.

BURDITUS: Life of her surroundings.

COOPER: When did you know that she was the one?

BURDITUS: In high school.

COOPER: Really?

BURDITUS: Yes.

COOPER: That's incredible. BURDITUS: And I had to say too in 32 years it grew stronger every day. It just got better every day.

COOPER: Did you know right away that something was bad happening? Some people we talked just said they thought it was pyrotechnics.

BURDITUS: And that's exactly what I told. We stood there for a second and she asked me if it was gunfire. I told her, no. And then it was during the second burst that we knew and started to leave, trying to get out of there.

COOPER: As if was getting out -- I mean there was such pandemonium.

BURDITUS: I can't say -- I didn't see anything what people were talking about -- you know, its not (INAUDIBLE). It was just dealing with the crowd.

COOPER: Right.

BURDITUS: I mean it wasn't a great deal of running. It was -- I was leaving her through crowd. I initially thought it was an attack from the ground from the back corner back her. I wasn't aware off. I looked over the building and didn't see anything. If we had it probably been a different route out of there.

COOPER: Were you able to talk to her at the end?

BURDITUS: I'm needling to her or her wound is fatal she was unconscious from the time she was struck.

COOPER: What happens now? I mean you live in West Virginia. You're going to stay here until you know you can bring her home.

BURDITUS: She's on her way back home. I'll travel back and be with the rest of my family. Two kids back here. She has four grand children and a fifth one on the way home to February. So I get back here for them.

COOPER: And I've heard those grand kids were the light of her life?

BURDITUS: They were. They were. And like I say we spent at least a month and a half with them each summer traveling and going around with them. They enjoyed their G-ma. So --

COOPER: That's what they called her?

BURDITUS: Yes. G-ma.

COOPER: G-ma. Is there anything else you want people to know? I was thinking something like this it's, you know, none of these people should be statistics or just --

BURDITUS: Right. She was a professional in the banking most of her adult life. She decided she was gone and she got out of there and just recently last year became a full-time student going back to college or going to college. Then she was dedicated to that. And in her free time I got to speak to her, but she was dedicated to it. I can't say enough.

I mean her smile and there wasn't a day that went by that if I didn't -- if I was out of town or something, I'd get a selfie on her way to the gym or on her way to school. I would get a huge smile. If I didn't get it, I'd text her back and she would send me one back with a smile.

COOPER: That's a blessing.

BURDITUS: And out of this whole ordeal, I just -- I'd like to mention also this is the good Samaritans during this. I know there was a gentleman that helped me move her back to a little bit safer area. At that time a young nurse was with me. She spent the remaining time with us to include a ride in the hospital in the back of the truck.

COOPER: That's how you got to the hospital that truck?

BURDITUS: Yes. I just -- You know, these people, I don't know their names. I'd like to thank them also. They're a very good Samaritans and also say to the crisis center here in town was -- has been unbelievable in helping us get through this also.

COOPER: How -- I mean you're -- I mean a lot of people would be just amazed that you're standing and able to talk.

BURDITUS: I've had my good times and bad times. And now all the emotional maybe some good times too. Thinking gets also in the times we've had and -- or maybe reflecting through some photos, flipping through my phone or tablet and seeing her. I'm going to miss her greatly and her family will going to miss her greatly, her friends are going to miss her greatly.

COOPER: I appreciate you talking to us about Denise and letting us know what she was actually like.

BURDITUS: My pleasure.

COOPER: I'm so sorry for your loss.

BURDITUS: I just wanted the world to know who she was. She was a great person.

COOPER: Thank you.

BURDITUS: Thank you.

COOPER: Appreciate that.

(END VIDEOCLIP)

COOPER: Tony and Denise Burditus. They're married 32 years, left behind two kids, four grand children, another grandchild on the way. More news ahead. We'll be right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK) [21:52:34] COOPER: As we continue to follow late developments from here in Las Vegas, there are other breaking stories to tell you about tonight. Significant in new details on those Russian Facebook ads during the 2016 presidential campaign, significant because for the first time we're learning that a number of ads were placed specifically in States that ended up being key to President Trump's victory.

CNN Manu Raju joined us now with more on that. So, what have you learned?

MANU RAJU, CNN CORRESPONDENT: That is right, Anderson. A number of the Russian links ads that appeared during the election season were targeting Michigan and Wisconsin, these two states critical to Donald Trump's victory last November.

Now four sources with direct knowledge of the situation tell my colleagues Dylan Byers, Dana Bash and myself, that the ads were intended to promote divisive messages including anti-Muslim messages. Even suggesting Muslims were a threat to the American way of life.

Now, it is been unclear until now exactly which regions of the country were targeted by the Facebook ads. And while one source said that a large number of these ads did appeared in areas that we're not heavily contested on the elections, some clearly were geared at swaying public opinion in the most heavily contested battle grounds.

And Anderson, you remember last week we reported that another racially ad was aimed to people in Bolton and Ferguson. And that ad appeared to be in support of a Black Lives Matter but also could be seen as threatening to that group.

COOPER: So do we know if they were help in choosing where the target?

RAJU: Well Adam Schiff, the top Democrat in the House Intelligence Community, Anderson, told me tonight, "We still don't know if anyone in the Trump campaign was involved in the Russia ad campaign effort." But as part of that investigation both the special council Robert Mueller and the congressional committees are seeking to determine whether the Russians received any help at all from Trump associates and where to target the ads.

Now, White House could not be reached for comment. But the President and Senior White House officials have long insisted there was never any collusion. Of course Trump has long contended the matter is a hoax. But these ads Anderson, reported of 3,000 submitted to congressional investigators by Facebook this week. And those ads that we believe now have reach roughly 10 million people.

Now, we now know the number of these ads did not target battle ground state from Michigan and Wisconsin, are the first two. We're learning about and they were critical in 2016 where of course these ads appeared. Now, of course, we have no way of knowing if these ads affected the vote.

Trump beat Clinton in Michigan by roughly 10, 700 votes out of nearly 4.5 million ballot casts closes margin of the country. In Wisconsin, of course, Anderson, one of the tightest racing states as well. Trump winning there by just 22,700 votes. Investigators have a lot more to determine about the exact impact that these ads had on the election outcome, Anderson.

[21:55:18] COOPER: Yes. Thanks very much, Manu. I appreciate that.

Joining me now is Steve Hall, who's a former CIA Senior Officer and an expert on Russia and also CNN Political Director David Chalian.

David, I mean obviously this raises more questions that what if anything the Trump campaign or any of its allies knew about these ads?

DAVID CHALIAN, CNN POLITICAL DIRECTOR: Right Anderson. That is going to be the critical question that come out of this story, was Russia or the agents that we're working on behalf of Russia just sort of inject itself into meddling in the election sophisticated enough to know exactly where to G.O. target these messages in Wisconsin, in Michigan specific zip codes, or did they have help with that. Did someone who understood the analytics of the campaign have some way of helping those that were seeking to get this messaging out there? That to me is going to be the central question that investigators are going to dig into for weeks to come now.

COOPER: Yes, Steve, I mean does it surprise you that the Russians would have enough expertise on U.S. electoral politics to target specific states with specific messages? I mean a lot of this is public information they could, you know, if they were just students of U.S. politics they might be able to figure out, no?

STEVE HALL, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: No, Anderson, it really doesn't surprise me at all. I mean for the Russians we are the main enemy. They refer to us as such we are in a lot ways validation for pretty much a lot of the things that they do at least on the public side of things. So no, it doesn't surprise me the resources that they throw at something like this are truly amazing. It's something that we probably couldn't even wrap our arms around in terms of how much money and people that they put into understanding this.

I think every member of, you know, the American democracy should be absolutely infuriated by the fact that, you know, the Russians who are a hostile country to the United States would try to do this in one of our elections. The only thing that would be even more, you know, irritating would be is if they had help, as David was just talking about from somebody in the inside. Which today we don't know yet, but certainly the Russians would be interested in doing and have the resources to pull this off. The only real question is whether or not they had help on the inside.

COOPER: Yes, I mean, David, President Trump is obviously the past criticize virtually, you know, every Russia related story line is being part of hoax. It always seems to come back to the idea that he uses every story of being some sort of asterisk on his victory even though none of the investigations haven't concluded yet?

CHALIAN: None at all. And not even many of these investigations are suggesting that, that's where this will go is into questioning out of the legitimacy of his election. But you are right Anderson, the President time and again not only has he not sort of taken up the battle of being infuriated on behalf of the American public, that our election was meddled with. He hasn't really made that a front and center priority.

But you are right. He does not seem capable of separating out facts as they emerge about this threat to our democracy from somebody calling into the legitimacy of his own election. He cannot separate those two things out thus far.

COOPER: You know, Steve, I mean as Russians watch this reporting, are they thinking, well, we got caught or I mean, is it just business as usual?

HALL: I think there's a real strong distinction between, you know, the man on the street in Russia who probably doesn't understand our system, doesn't understand what states, you know, may have been involved, how this was all rigged. But certainly the Russian population is extremely supportive of Vladimir Putin. And a lot of that does depend on how he deals with the United States and with the west. And specifically whether not he is being strong enough, whether or not he is being strict and stern enough so that Russia gets the amount of respect that it feels that it gets.

That's the type of terms that I think most Russians frankly both on the street and actually inside the Kremlin are concerned about. Are we being respected as a great power and, you know, is -- are we dealing strongly enough with the United States? So he's a very popular guy, Putin is with Russians who would definitely support him in his attempts to do, you know, what they indeed did during our elections.

CHALIAN: And Anderson, it's worth noting also about this story Michigan and Wisconsin, absolutely critical part of that crumbling blue wall we talked about all the time in the lead up to the election critical to Donald Trump's success. But even if he were to have lost those two specific states, we should note Donald Trump still would have had enough electoral votes to be elected president of the United States.

COOPER: Yes, David Chalian, Steve Hall, I appreciate you guys being with us. Thank you very much.

Thank you for watching. Tonight we'll be back here obviously here in Las Vegas tomorrow with more reporting on what happened here.

It's time now to turn things over to Don Lemon who is also live in Las Vegas, Don.