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ERIN BURNETT OUTFRONT
Ferguson Police Chief Resigns; Fraternity Advisers: Racist Chant Going on For Years
Aired March 11, 2015 - 19:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
BRIANNA KEILAR, CNN ANCHOR: Good evening. I'm Brianna Keilar. And you're watching Erin Burnett OUTFRONT. Let's go back now to Ferguson, Missouri where the mayor has just announced that Police Chief Thomas Jackson has resigned.
MAYOR JAMES KNOWLES, FERGUSON, MISSOURI: Absolutely.
UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Can you talk about and evaluate the job he did as police chief after you read that DOJ report, that scathing report about how he ran the police department?
KNOWLES: Yes. I mean, as I've said, we continue to go through that report and talk about where the break down was. Again, the chief being an honorable man decided that we need to talk about the way moving forward was with someone else. And so, he left. But that is not to say that's an indication of anything at this point. Again, we want to go and we have been going through that report and identifying the break down. And that breakdown can be at all different levels. And as we continue to do that the important part is about how we can address that. What are the safeguards we can put into place? What changes do we need to do to put into place? And those are the things we're focused on.
UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Is it fair to say the final decision would have to happen after the DOJ report or did you already know this was going to have to happen before the report came out?
KNOWLES: I think it's safe to say that all along we've said what is the best for the city. If you're asking was the chief planning on resigning before that report, you'd have to ask the chief. Obviously the decision was made after. But again, this has been in conversation with many community leaders, others in the profession. And so I think it's important that we recognize that, you know, chief made this decision because he wanted to do this. In part, he thought it was the best for the city and for the police department. And I think the chief will probably be willing to talk about it more in the coming weeks about really what his thought process was, you know, over the past couple of weeks.
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: When were you aware of his decision to step down?
KNOWLES: It was over the weekend that he and I had the conversation in which that conclusion was come to.
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Did he said last night that his job was not being questioned?
KNOWLES: I didn't say his job --
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: His job was not in question at this point.
KNOWLES: Well, I mean, there were still things that were still being negotiated out. So, as far as giving you any indication as far as, you know, was he gone or anything. I mean, again, you asked a question at the wrong time. Let's put it that way. You asked the question before the decision was totally made. As far as the chief and his thought process that was something we talked about over the weekend. But that's different from the city coming to the agreement. Because that was not done when I answered the question.
UNIDENTIFIED MAN: In the last week or so, your city's clerk has resigned, city manager has resigned --
KNOWLES: The court clerk's. Not the city's clerk. I wish I got that. I wish people would let me put what I meant and not what I said.
UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Fair enough. A lot of major employees of the city have stepped down. What is that going to mean for your city going forward that you have this --
KNOWLES: Well, I mean, I think that's why chief, one of the reasons why chief is staying around is because we think it's important that we have an orderly transition. We cannot have everybody just up and leave. The city has to function. The police department has to function. We're very committed to making sure all of those function properly. So, part of that is the, the chief having a resignation in the future which will allow him to talk to his men. Help plan for what that transition is and that's going to have to be done at several levels as we move forward. So, it's fair question. It's absolutely a fair question. But that's why we're not just removing the chief -- I'm sorry the chief is not leaving immediately and anybody else that may or may not leave in the future. We have been focused on engaging other professionals to come in and help us on a temporary or interim basis. And so, there's a lot of good professionals out there to help us not just at the police department level but at the city administration level.
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Was his plans or after leaving Ferguson?
KNOWLES: I mean, no not yet.
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Final question.
KNOWLES: Pardon me?
UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Is John also getting a year severance? KNOWLES: Yes.
UNIDENTIFIED MAN: A lot of people saying that you should be the next person?
KNOWLES: Didn't I tell you this last night? It was somebody else. I apologize. As Mr. Rosenbaum succinctly pointed out, somebody is going to have to be here to run the ship. And, you know, I've been committed. The city council has been committed to making those reforms. I realize that there's some people that still want a head or my head or other heads. And I can understand, you know, that they're going to say that. But again, we're focused on how we can move this community forward.
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Ladies and gentlemen, thank you.
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: -- that something wrong going on here, that's something what is seen being talked about in this report was valid?
KNOWLES: You know, again, we're going through that report. Those resignations are mutual decision both by the chief and the city manager. And I think that their comments and their resignation do say that they admit no wrongdoing, so. Thank you very much.
KEILAR: There you have it. You just heard the mayor of Ferguson, Missouri announcing this breaking news that Ferguson's embattled police chief has now resigned. Calls for Thomas Jackson resignation had been growing ever since August of 2014. That's when former Officer Darren Wilson shot Michael Brown and unarmed black teenager. That shooting triggered nationwide protest in the Department of Justice investigation which revealed the Ferguson Police Department has a history of discrimination toward African-Americans.
Sara Sidner has been following this story for months. She's OUTFRONT for us tonight. We just see these officials wrapping up this press conference about Chief Jackson's resignation. What do you make of what you just heard Sara having covered this story all this time?
SARA SIDNER, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: I heard a couple of things that I think were significant. One of which is, you're hearing from the mayor on television and in front of cameras, that there's no indication that they are going to fold. In other words, that the department is going to either be taken over or dissolved. One of the big things he said that was on the chief's mind before he made this decision. The second thing that I heard is interesting. Because he talked about having consultants and that the consultants were looking at the information and telling them what they realistically have to do, which to me gives some indication that perhaps some of that stuff and the Department of Justice report, the city may fight. May look at and say this is not consistent. This is not consistent. They are looking at consultants to try to help them do that. And I do know from a source that these consultants are very familiar with how the DOJ works in other cases and how they've treated other departments. They are looking through this with a fine toothcomb every detail of this report. KEILAR: Key points that we just heard there in Ferguson from the
mayor. And Sara, we learned a little bit there about the man who will be replacing Chief Jackson in the interim. What can you tell us about him?
SIDNER: Lieutenant Colonel Eickhoff. We just heard from the mayor that he started, just before the killing of Michael Brown. We now know from the DOJ report we know from the grand jury that he has not been charged with anything. He has been exonerated basically. That what his actions were the Officer Wilson, you know, has not been condemned by the DOJ or by the grand jury. But we also know that he has been at the department in a managerial position for a while but not very long. We also heard from the mayor that he's respected by the other officers. Whether or not he will be respected by the community is another thing.
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: We just need you to resign.
SIDNER (voice-over): After months of resistant calls for his resignation. Ferguson Police Chief Thomas Jackson said today he's stepping down. Jackson came under fire almost immediately after Darren Wilson, a white Ferguson police officer, shot and killed Michael Brown, an unarmed black teenager after a scuffle between the two. The anger began on the first day when Brown's body wasn't removed for four hours.
JOEY JACKSON, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: The community perceived that as less than humanity.
SIDNER: That initial anger grew when Jackson refused to reveal the name of the police officer who shot and killed Brown. Nearly a week later when he did, named Officer Darren Wilson, Jackson's department used the same news conference to release surveillance video of Brown stealing a pack of cigars while shoving the store clerk. Hours later Jackson held a second press conference saying Officer Wilson did not actually know Brown was the robbery suspect during their initial encounter sparking even more outrage.
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: It's not right.
JACKSON: You have a police chief that comes out and it sounded in the initial press conference, is he the police chief or the defense attorney.
SIDNER: The missteps continued. A month later Jackson recorded an apology.
THOMAS JACKSON, FERGUSON POLICE CHIEF: I'm truly sorry for the loss of your son.
SIDNER: Rejected by Brown's family as too little, too late. That night he meet with protesters agreeing to march with them but even that meeting turned ugly. Despite all this, Jackson repeatedly said that he was the right man for the job. THOMAS JACKSON: I intend to see this thing through. And I've
been working with a lot of community members to work on some progressive changes that will bring the community together.
SIDNER: Then last week the Justice Department released the results of its investigation into the Ferguson Police Department. Disproportionately high traffic stops, searches and arrests of black people and several racist e-mails uncovered. Some shared by two officers, another by the court clerk. And this, the revelation the department systematically raised city revenues to regressive ticketing with blacks being hit the hardest. Jackson noting that one month the department passed the two million mark for first time in history. Shortly after its released, I caught up with Thomas Jackson who would not respond to repeated requests for an interview.
(on camera): Are you planning on resigning?
THOMAS JACKSON: I'll let you know. I've told you that.
SIDNER: You haven't told us anything.
SIDNER: So, what he told me in the months prior to this was that he was considering resigning but then he came out and said, no, I'm going to stay the course. I'm going to stay in position I want to be there for this community. And now he has indeed told everyone, the city, of course first that he is actually going to step down and that has happened now -- Brianna.
KEILAR: Yes. A big headline today. Sara Sidner, thank you so much. And OUTFRONT now, we have Jeff Ward of the business manager for the City of St. Louis Police Officers Association. We have CNN's Don Lemon and we have Patricia Bynes, a democratic committee woman for Ferguson Township. So, Patricia to you first. You've been calling for really a clean sweep of city officials. What's your reaction to Chief Jackson's resignation today?
PATRICIA BYNES, DEMOCRATIC COMMITTEEWOMAN, FERGUSON TOWNSHIP: Immediately I felt that this was long overdue. And my real concern is, I just can't understand how he did not step down earlier, but we need to deal with the culture issue here to make sure that whoever is coming in behind Chief Jackson is just not a new face and a new name on the same type of issues. We need to seriously deal with the culture of the police department and the municipal courts and the way that the city is run. So, him stepping down is good but it's long overdue.
KEILAR: So, what else does it take? Because since the Justice Department report came out we've seen the city manager go, a court clerk was fired, a municipal court judge resigned. Who else do you think needs to go?
BYNES: Well, when you read the report there's some -- they highlight the Director of Finance ever sends memos to the police chief saying, hey, we really need some more revenue here. And the person who oversees the budget and the finances for the city certainly needs to be somebody who doesn't feel that getting in touch with the police department to target more individuals is the way to get financing for the city.
KEILAR: Jeff, did you see this resignation as necessary in order to bridge this huge chasm when it comes to trust between the public and Ferguson and the Police Department there?
JEFF WARD, BUSINESS MANAGER, CITY OF ST. LOUIS POLICE OFFICERS ASSOCIATION: Well, apparently Tom did. You know, Tom has said repeatedly and publicly that he wanted to stay the course and be part of the solution going forward and the healing going forward. And you know, it's just my reading of talking to folks in Ferguson today and governmental capacities is that Tom thought that his presence after the DOJ report would be more of a distraction than an opportunity to move forward.
KEILAR: Don, you spent --
WARD: But you know, Patricia is exactly right.
KEILAR: Yes. Go on.
WARD: Patricia is right. There's a need for reform in the courts there. Those e-mails should never have been tolerated. It's good that the Mayor Knowles fired the folks or asked for the resignations right away when those were unearthed. But let's remember that Tom Jackson was accused initially of being in command of a department where one of his officers gunned down a young black man in cold blood who was trying to surrender and now the revelation is that they write too many tickets and that they write e-mails sent before his tenure that were reprehensible.
DON LEMON, CNN ANCHOR: That's what the whole Michael Brown uncovered that. The narrative about, you know, the Police Department having a disconnect and targeting people that came up very quickly after the killing of Michael Brown, almost as soon as we hit the ground in Ferguson, Missouri. So, initially, yes, that was what, you know, that they said that he was in charge of the police department with an officer who had gunned down an unarmed black men. A very quickly after that, people started protesting and saying, we're tired of the police department. We feel like in many ways they are overseers and we are the people that they are overseeing. The only interaction we have with them is when it's negative. There's no real community policing here.
KEILAR: Community members, Don, you spent a lot of time there in Ferguson, is this what they wanted?
LEMON: Yes, it's what community members wanted. But a lot of people had called for the resignation of Mayor James Knowles today. And they thought that he would come out today. As she said, they've been calling for his resignation for longer than today. But they thought that he would come out today during this press conference and would possibly resign. And I think it's important, I think Sara Sidner and also Sonny (ph) pointed out something that's very important. We talk about those 26 recommendations from the Department of Justice. As Sonny said, those aren't really recommendations. That's a nice way of saying this is what you must do in order to get your department in order. And if they cannot financially support that, then that may mean the dissolution of that department may dissolve. So, they have to figure out a way to fund this. I don't think that those are recommendations. I think it's a nice way of saying as Sonny said, you need to do this in order to keep the department.
KEILAR: All right. Don, Jeff, Patricia, thanks to all of you for having this conversation with this breaking news that we're following here tonight.
And OUTFRONT next, that racist fraternity chants. The song now labelled a horrible cancer that's poisoned that fraternity for years.
Plus, ISIS militants losing ground to Iraqi and Iranian forces as republican lawmakers charge the administration is making Iraq a better place for Iran.
And two secret service agents being investigated now after reportedly crashing their car into White House security barriers. Were they drunk?
KEILAR: Tonight, new fall-out from a video of a University of Oklahoma student leading his fraternity brothers in a racist chant. SAE is now admitting that the chant has been a part of the fraternity chapter for years. The two students who led the singing about excluding black students have been expelled. Parker Rice seen here in the video apologized but the backlash is now reaching his hometown of Dallas. Tonight, protests are planned outside of his home. His family is now in hiding due to threats.
Alina Machado is OUTFRONT.
ALINA MACHADO, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): This disturbing chant out of the University of Oklahoma's Sigma Alpha Epsilon Chapter is now a symbol of a horrible cancer. The former fraternity's alumni advisor say, that enter the OU chapter of SAE three to four years ago and was not immediately and totally stopped should have been. They add in a statement that they are truly sorry and sincerely remorseful. It's the latest in a string of apologies so surface in the fall out from this viral video.
Nineteen-year-old freshman Parker Rice released a statement to the Dallas Morning News saying he is deeply sorry for his actions calling them wrong and reckless. As for why he did it, he says, quote, "I admit it likely was fueled by alcohol consumed at the house before the bus trip. But that's not an excuse. Yes, the song was taught to us but that too doesn't work as an explanation." The parents of 20-year-old Levi Pettit, a sophomore also from Dallas say their son is not a racist and issued an apology to the entire African- American community and the school saying in part he made a horrible mistake and will live with the consequences forever. However, we also know the depth of our son's character. He's a good boy but what we saw in those videos is disgusting.
UNIDENTIFIED MAN: You have to see how an individual continues to behave.
MACHADO: Christopher Flix, the president of a campus The Panhellenic Council says Pettit's apology falls short.
CHRISTOPHER FLIX, PRESIDENT, NATIONAL PANHELLENIC COUNCIL: I think it's almost like protecting and kind of overshadowing his role and his participation. Because it wasn't his parents that were chanting on the bus. It was him. And so I think that he needs to, you know, to say something.
MACHADO: And while Parker Rice may be sorry, Flix says the disgraced freshman needs to man up.
FLIX: I do forgive him and what he did. But I think he needs to, you know, take full responsibility and not make those attempts of shifting responsibility and placing blame on others.
MACHADO: But whether others will be held accountable is still unknown.
MACHADO: The Oklahoma state attorney general's office released a statement today saying they are working with the university. They are trying to determine if any state laws were violated and they say if that is the case, if state laws were broken during the incident, the state attorney general's office is prepared to take swift action and hold people accountable -- Brianna.
KEILAR: Alina Machado for us in Norman, Oklahoma, thank you so much. The video of that racist chant was released by OU Unheard. It's an African-American student group on campus. And they received the video through an anonymous text.
OUTFRONT tonight we have Meagan Johnson. She's a junior at the University of Oklahoma and she is a member of Unheard. So Megan, you've been a student at Oklahoma for three years now. You saw this video. Did it surprise you?
MEAGAN JOHNSON, MEMBER OF OU STUDENT GROUP THAT RELEASED FRATERNITY VIDEO: The video honestly wasn't shocking to me. Because we experience forms, different forms of racism on our campus all the time. It wasn't shocking at all.
KEILAR: Okay. So, you were not particularly surprised. We heard from your organization "Unheard" a tweet. This is part of it. It said this is more than just about SAE. So, you're saying that racism is an issue throughout campus. How have you seen that manifest and how widespread do you think it is?
JOHNSON: I wouldn't say that it's widespread. I think right now we're focusing on are the actions of a few individuals within an organization that has gotten national attention. But what OU Unheard means by this is more than SAE, this is more than just racism. We do think that the University of Oklahoma needs to focus on diversity across our campus. It's not just a Greek issue. It's a campus wide, it needs to be a campus wide effort to make OU more diverse and more inclusive place.
KEILAR: Okay. And so, if that's the goal, I imagine that you've experienced maybe some racial insensitivity if not outright racism on campus. What's your experience been being on campus as a black student?
JOHNSON: Being on campus as a black student, I've had a great experience. There are ways that it could be better. The university can do better. I've experienced some micro aggressions whether it's can you teach me how to twerk or can I touch your hair that hasn't been as pleasant. But I think that my overall experience at OU has been a great one.
KEILAR: Who would ask you to teach them how to twerk? Is this someone you know? Is this just like a random student who would ask you that?
JOHNSON: These are other students across campus. Not necessarily in a classroom setting would I be asked teach me how to twerk or can I touch your hair. It's a different student organizations or around campus or a party or anything of that matter.
KEILAR: Okay. So, they're not realizing that it comes off certainly as it is coming off to you and someone on the outside looking at it. So, Meagan, we heard from one of the students here, Parker Rice, he's issued this apology. He mentioned, quote, that the song was taught to us. That was sort of shocking to some people. This is the frat admitting that it's a song that's been going on for years and years. So, do you think that maybe other students should be punished as well or do you think that the punishment is sufficient?
JOHNSON: I think that the punishment is sufficient. But I think that we should focus more on making this a learning experience for the university and for all students across the campus to learn from the mistakes that he made and that we put initiatives in place so it never happens again.
KEILAR: A learning experience. I love that phrase that you used. I love your perspective on this Meagan as you're trying to take this and mover forward in a positive direction. Thanks so much Meagan Johnson for talking with us tonight.
JOHNSON: Thank you.
KEILAR: And OUTFRONT next. As Iran takes an ever larger role fighting ISIS in Iraq. Law makers are asking, has the administration made a deal with the devil?
And Homeland Security investigating two secret service agents. Were they partying too hard when they crashed the car into White House barriers?
KEILAR: Tonight, ISIS gaining ground in Syria, staging a major assault on a strategic border town, deploying heavy weaponry, including tanks and artillery, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.
But in Iraq, it's a different story. ISIS losing ground, thanks in part to Iranian-backed militias. Iran's involvement, a huge complicating factor for the U.S. and a big issue today when Secretary of State John Kerry and Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter faced a grilling on Capitol Hill.
Barbara Starr OUTFRONT from the Pentagon.
BARBARA STARR, CNN PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Twenty- three thousand troops, mainly Iranian-backed militia, gaining ground against ISIS, placing flags, patrolling and retaking the town north of Tikrit.
The president's top diplomat and defense secretary on Capitol Hill Wednesday to push Congress to give the president new authority to fight ISIS, while concern grows about Iran's influence in this fight.
SEN. BOB CORKER (R-TN), CHAIRMAN, SENATE FOREIGN RELATIONS COMMITTEE: Every single thing that we're doing is really inuring to the benefit of Iran. In other words, we're making Iraq a better place for Iran.
STARR: Iraqi troops still cannot conduct large scale operations on their own, Iran's help and influence however a major worry for the president's top military advisors.
GEN. MARTIN DEMPSEY, CHAIRMAN, JOINT CHIEFS OF STAFF: There's ways to promote a better Iraq, economically for example, and there's ways they can wield that influence to create a state where the Sunni and the Kurds are no longer welcome.
STARR: The secretary of state acknowledging the U.S. and Iran do share a goal.
JOHN KERRY, SECRETARY OF STATE: They would welcome our bombing, additionally, ISIS actually. They want us to destroy ISIS. They want to destroy ISIS.
STARR: A hint today that the U.S. role could grow. The Pentagon looking at a possible no-fly zone over parts of Syria to protect U.S.- backed rebels from being attacked by Basher al-Assad's forces.
DEMPSEY: It was always my advice that we had to come to some conclusion to assure them they would be protected. Now, the scope and scale of that protection is the part of this that's being actively debated.
STARR: Promising again that the U.S. does not want to send combat troops or make the fight a U.S. only one.
KERRY: The implications of that would be to aid in the recruitment to create a bigger problem than we face today. And that's what they want. We're not getting suckered into that.
STARR: In Ramadi, ISIS undeterred, releasing images of what it claims are its attacks more than 150 rounds of mortars and missiles, nearly 20 car bombs.
STARR: Defense Secretary Ash Carter says the U.S. has the obligation in his words to protect those Syrian rebels. It sends back into Syria to fight. But who's going to do it?
President Obama has ruled out U.S. troops on the ground in combat. That leaves air power and it's going to be a real question whether U.S. pilots will take on any increased role over Syria -- Brianna.
KEILAR: Yes, very big question. Barbara Starr for us at the Pentagon, thank you.
And OUTFRONT tonight, we have Buck Sexton. He's the national security editor for TheBlaze.com. He's a former CIA Iraq analyst as well.
And we have retired Colonel Douglas Macgregor, as senior military fellow at National Defense University.
So, to you first Buck. We saw Barbara's piece. Iranian-backed militias gaining ground against ISIS in Iraq. You have Senator Bob Corker, he's the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, opening this hearing today, warning that the U.S. is making Iraq a better place for Iran.
BUCK SEXTON, FORMER CIA COUNTERTERRORISM ANALYST: That's absolutely true. I mean, Iran is rushing into what is essentially a vacuum here, because of the fight against ISIS, there's been a major destabilization inside of Iraq. And the government of Baghdad is looking for allies. And, of course, the government of Baghdad is generally considered to be a Shia government by the Sunnis and the rest of the country.
And so, right now, the Shia government out of Baghdad is looking for Shia allies in Iran and they're getting them. And you're seeing Iran deployed, actually doing a lot of the fighting and having these militias do the fighting for them, whether they train or giving them arms or combination thereof.
And this is going to exacerbate the sectarian tensions that the administration has been saying for a long time. Well, we're hoping that they can overcome this with good services and good government. That's not happening at all. Right now, you have an Iranian Shia army on the march, whether it's actually Iranians or just individuals that are sponsored by Iran. And this creates major problems in a Sunni Arab majorities of this country.
KEILAR: Sure. But the government very married with Iran in its interest here.
Colonel Macgregor, how do you stop Iran here? If you're not open to, say, U.S. boots on the ground, how else do you stop Iran from expanding its hold?
COL. DOUGLAS MACGREGOR, SENIOR MILITARY FELOW, NATIONAL DEFENSE UNIVERSITY: Well, historically, Iran has been stopped repeatedly by the Turks and their Sunni Arab supporters. And I suspect that we are at the beginning of a long Sunni-Shia war and eventually, we'll see something like that happen again.
But, right now, we're universally hated and despised in the Arabian Peninsula by all of the Sunni Arabs for having installed Iran in power in Baghdad. Baghdad and southern Iraq are considered with great justification to be the satellite of Iran. So, what Iran is now doing, it's headed towards Mosul, which historically was part of Persia sometime ago. And that's a very dangerous thing, because there are 1.8 million people in Mosul and they are overwhelmingly Sunni Arabs.
We really don't want to be part of that fight. When we were in Fallujah, 75 percent of the population fled. There were 300,000 people in Fallujah. What happens when we have a million Sunni Arab refugees fleeing for Mosul?
This is a catastrophe that I think we would be better off staying out of it.
KEILAR: So, if you stay out of it, Buck, then, what's -- is there a solution? Does the U.S. just throw its hands up in the air?
SEXTON: Quite honestly, under this administration, we have been largely staying out of it. That's one of the decisions people are critical of this administration for taking. And that's why we had some of the problems we've seen in Iraq because ISIS was able to take Mosul, and essentially a blitzkrieg operation. Iran is rushing in as well.
KEILAR: -- the administration should have stemmed this before.
SEXTON: Well, yes. I think that the destabilization of Iraq that came from the withdrawal of all U.S. troops is -- we're now seeing the end result, or not the end result, but a sort of midpoint result of what happens then. I agree with the Colonel --
KEILAR: Short of some major occupation of U.S. troops, do you think that the U.S. would have been able to stem this?
SEXTON: I think it would have been in a better position to stop what's happening right now than where we are. I think that much is probably true. What to do now, though, the colonel is right this is just playing
out day by day, a sectarian civil war. That's what's happening here. We've actually seen this before in Iraq. And it was very difficult for U.S. troops, 150,000 plus of them to get that to stop.
We're heading right back there right now with Iraq. But the Shia option, essentially allowing Iranian-backed Shia militias to retake parts of this country currently held by ISIS is not going to happen.
He points out Mosul. He's actually correct. The Sunni Arab majority city over a million people there, in those areas the sectarian tensions would make recruits for the Islamic State, fighting -- people who aren't fighting for them are saying the militias are coming for me. These are groups that have not just killed U.S. soldiers, by the way, but have engaged in sectarian reprisals, bloody human rights violations against Iraqi civilians They haven't forgotten that. That's still happening in bits and pieces here and there. It will probably accelerate the more ground they take.
KEILAR: Sure. Colonel Macgregor, you respond to that. But also, what do you think the U.S. can do to stop ISIS here? And what is the end game look like do you think?
MACGREGOR: Well, first of all, ISIS is another of these Islamist organizations that given time will implode. The reason is very simple. This Islamist lifestyle, which involves the rigid application of Koranic law is an impossible way to live.
ISIS is already losing ground and support because the Sunni Arabs that live around it don't support it. If we become involved, we will actually mobilize Sunni Arabs against us. We'll probably rescue ISIS from defeat, at least in the short run.
In the long run, I don't think we should involve ourselves in war that has nothing to do with us.
KEILAR: All right. There we have it. The word from Colonel Macgregor, thank you so much.
Buck Sexton, thanks for being with us as well.
OUTFRONT next, new images of the Tsarnaev brothers' final night on the run accused of killing a police officer as SWAT teams closed on them. We are live in Boston.
And we have breaking news: Secret Service agents reportedly crashed their car into White House barriers. Were men assigned to protect the president driving drunk?
KEILAR: We have breaking news. Two Secret Service agents are under investigation after allegedly crashing a car into White House security barriers. According to "The Washington Post", this accident happened after the agents were drinking at a late night party. And to make matters even worse one of the agents is a top member of President Obama's protective detail.
Michelle Kosinski is at the White House tonight.
Michelle, what more can you tell us about this incident? We're just learning about it.
MICHELLE KOSINSKI, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: You know, these are two high level agents. The other one was a supervisor. The Secret Service when we're talking to officials tonight, they are not confirming any of these details that are in "The Washington Post" article that broke this story a short time ago. But then again, they're not disputing any of the details either.
So, what the article says is that on March 4th at night, these two agents were coming back from a party. There's an allegation that they were drinking.
In fact, there was a retirement party for a spokesperson for the Secret Service. And they were near the White House, approaching an area that had been closed off because officers were investigating a suspicious package. So, they were trying to get through the barriers. According to the article they were showing their badges.
But then, they went through the tape that was part of the barricade and crashed into one of the temporary barriers that had been set up, kind of those metal bike rack type barriers.
To add to the strangeness of this story, it's also being alleged that officers there who witnessed this wanted to not only arrest the two Secret Service agents, but also have them tested to see if they were sober or not. The supervisor who was there ordered that they just be allowed to go home.
So, what's happened now is the two agents have been reassigned to non-supervisory roles, non-operational roles, as the Secret Service is saying. And the Secret Service is also saying it's not temporary. They're not confirming that these are permanent reassignment. But they're saying it's not accurate to say that it's temporary, pending an investigation.
The director of the Secret Service has ordered that the inspector general within the Department of Homeland Security will be one to investigate this latest, you know, what to be a real embarrassment for the Secret Service, Brianna.
KEILAR: All right. Michelle Kosinski for us at the White House -- thank you. We know you'll continue to follow this developing story.
And OUTFRONT next, new surveillance video just in to CNN capturing the Boston bombers allegedly killing a police officer, as jurors get a close up look at their deadly pressure cooker bomb.
And Jeanne Moos with dash cam video of this high speed bail out, hundreds of pounds of pot literally hitting the streets.
KEILAR: Breaking news: key evidence in the Boston marathon bombing trial just released to the public. We're seeing these images for the first time, parts of one of the pressure cookers that was detonated near the finish line and also, surveillance video of a police officer the moment that he was killed.
Dzhokhar Tsarnaev faces capital murder charges for allegedly carrying out the terror attack nearly two years ago with his brother, Tamerlan, that killed 4 people and wounded 260 others.
Deborah Feyerick is OUTFRONT in Boston.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If you see these men, contact law enforcement.
DEBORAH FEYERICK, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Hours after the FBI released the Tsarnaev brothers' photos, just before 10:30 Thursday night, two men around the corner and approached MIT Police Officer Sean Collier as he sits in his cruiser. Bright lights flashed, calls come into MIT dispatch.
CALLER: It sounds like something is hitting a trash can really loud or there's a cruiser that's right by there.
DISPATCHER: We'll check it out.
FEYERICK: In that cruiser, Officer Collier, shot multiple times, not responding to either radio or cell call. A sergeant arrived.
OFFICER: Oh my goodness. All units respond. Officer down, officer down, all units.
FEYERICK: Collier has a slight pulse, but is bleeding badly. Other police now on scene frantically performs CPR, trying to save him. His gun belt is removed, gun visible on the gun handle.
Prosecutors say Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and Tamerlan Tsarnaev tried to steal the firearm which was tripped locked in his holster.
An MIT student rides by in a bike. He testified seeing a young guy leaning into the cruiser, quote, "He snapped up and turned around. He looked startled. I made eye contact. He had a big nose. He was wearing a dark sweatshirt and hat."
Asked whether that man was in court, the student pointed, identifying Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. Tsarnaev flanked by his lawyers watched video described as him and his brother running from the murder scene.
Earlier in the day, the jury, along with Tsarnaev, were shown bomb components, including a twisted 8 inch piece of a pressure cooker, BBs and nails used as shrapnel, a green electrical wire, and the shredded pieces of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev's backpack found in the middle of the marathon route.
FEYERICK: And prosecutors are moving very quickly through their case. They have had 40 witnesses in just five days. There's been very little cross examination by Tsarnaev's lawyers, who really has only raised questions about Dzhokhar's, his cell phone records and also his Twitter account. But otherwise, this case is going very, very rapidly. It could be over months before anticipated -- Brianna.
KEILAR: Wow. And, Deb, tell us a little bit about Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. He's been pretty stoic throughout this process. How is he today?
FEYERICK: Yes, stoic or disengaged. He hasn't really showed much response at all. But today, it was a little bit different, because when the FBI showed the photos of him and his brother the day they were released, asking the public for help, you could se see Tsarnaev leaning in to the images and then after the video was played of him and his brother running across the MIT campus both toward the officer and then away from the officer, the lawyers didn't really ask if he was OK.
So, not clear whether things are all of the sudden beginning to register because he's shown little emotion but when you heard the testimony of those fellow colleagues of Shawn Collier talking about how they responded, what they saw, the fact that their friend was bleeding, it was very, very quiet, almost unusually quiet with very heavy pauses as the officers tried to gather their thoughts -- Brianna.
KEILAR: All right. Deb Feyerick, who's been covering this trial -- thank you so much from Boston for us.
OUTFRONT next, Jeanne Moos with criminals who put the "high" in high speed chase. We have that, next.
KEILAR: Tonight's money and power, a marijuana operation goes to pot. Authorities say two suspects are out about $394,000 after hurling 21 bails after marijuana out of their SUV windows during a police chase. Savvy street smarts or just plain stupid?
Here's Jeanne Moos.
JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It was just another high-speed chase until the suspect started tossing the evidence, out the right side, out the left.
These suspects are bailing all right. Those are bales of marijuana.
What do you think their strategy was here? SHERIFF PAUL BABEU, PINAL COUNTY, ARIZONA: Well, it's not a good
strategy. This is one for the dumb criminal case.
MOOS: Most bales bounce. A couple of them burst. The sheriff of Pinal County, Arizona, thinks they were trying to --
BABEU: Make a stop somehow by causing a wreck.
MOOS: That never happened, though 21 bales were jettisoned.
Talk about pot luck. Police believe four or five drivers who just happened to be passing by managed to grab some of the tossed marijuana and they didn't turn it in.
After reaching speeds of 110 miles an hour, the SUV ran over spike strips laid by deputies.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He just tossed his cell phone backward.
MOOS: Watch the tires of SUV shred. Moments later, it pulled over and the suspects ran for it. At least one of the men is from Mexico. They were arrested on marijuana charges.
This isn't the first evidence to fly out a window. Two suspects in Britain were caught on dash cam heaving packets of heroin before they were finally forced off the road.
But it can be messy trying to throw drugs out the window of a moving car.
The driver of this VW tried hurling a bag of heroin only to end up dusting his interior.
And then there were the San Diego suspects who flung thousands of dollars in cash after a drug deal went wrong. Motorists tried scooping up the bills. One even stopped in the middle of the freeway.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: How much you get, man?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don't know.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Are you going to keep it?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I don't know.
MOOS: That's not what they mean by throwing money at infrastructure. And this isn't what causes potholes.
Jeanne Moos, CNN, New York.
KEILAR: She stole my pothole joke. I had that earlier.
Thanks so much for joining us.
"AC360" starts right now.