CNN on Why They Have Video of Roger Stone’s Arrest: We Had a Hunch It’d Happen

Americans awoke Friday morning to find that, as expected, Trump associate and InfoWars fan Roger Stone been arrested by the FBI at his Ft. Lauderdale, Florida home on seven counts related to the Trump-Russia probe. 

But what made this long-expected arrest surprsing? Well, somehow CNN had a camera and producer on scene for the arrest, airing by 6:37 a.m. Eastern providing footage of armed agents swarming his house. According to CNN, they just had a hunch. 

Not surprisingly, more than a few people are skeptical of this and, also not surprisingly, CNN is puffing its chest while attacking those expressing doubts.

 

 

“Alright, we do have breaking news, perhaps major breaking news in the Russia investigation. The FBI has arrested political activist, Trump associate, and friend Roger Stone. CNN's camera was there as it happened. Watch this,” New Day co-host John Berman reported in teeing up a smidgen of CNN’s exclusive video.

More video was shown nine minutes later with Camerota pointing out that law enforcement showed up “in flap jackets”: “[L]ook at the team of agents that show up. This is very serious stuff. Obviously, they didn't know what was going to happen when they got there, Anne.” 

Two minutes after that around 6:48 a.m. Eastern, Camerota again marveled (click “expand”):

I just want to play our exclusive CNN video of are the FBI arriving this morning at Roger Stone’s house. I think that this is important for everybody to see, so let's just play one more time as we go to break, what it looked like outside in the dead of night outside Roger Stone’s home, the long-time Trump associate in Florida of the FBI team arriving to take him into custody. Look at the gear that they're wearing. Look at how — I mean, just look at how serious the FBI is taking this. How many agents there are and this was, obviously, a surprise arrest. His lawyer didn't know this was Roger Stone didn't know this was coming. He was sleeping. This is what happened this morning in Florida at Roger Stone’s home. We have much more exclusive CNN video that we will play right after we take this break. 

New Day aired even more footage after a commercial break, but it wasn’t until 7:26 a.m. Eastern that CNN crime and justice producer David Shortell joined Camerota from Stone’s neighborhood to talk about what he and his crew experienced in waiting for the FBI to roll up.

Here’s Shortell explaining what he saw (click “expand”):

Alisyn, an extraordinary morning. We were here at 5:00 a.m. waiting for whatever was going to happen. It was dark. 6:00 a.m., just after the hour, about a half dozen police vehicles with sirens but no sounds, sirens — they pull into in front of this Fort Lauderdale home where Roger Stone was presumably asleep. The lights were off in the house. About a dozen officers, FBI agents wearing tactical vests and with large weapons fanned out across his front lawn. One went up to the house and rapped on the door, shined a flashlight inside and said “FBI, open the door.” Moments later as you heard in the video, it said “FBI, warrant.” That's what the agent said. We then saw a light go on the second floor and moments later there was Roger Stone in the doorway. That was our video exclusively you saw shot by Gill DeLarosa. An extraordinary arrest here in Fort Lauderdale this morning. 

Eventually, Camerota admitted that “what's so fascinating is that we've talked to his attorney, the attorney didn't know this was coming” but CNN was “staked out at his house,” so “why were you there in position?”

Shortell responded that it was just “a reporter's instinct” since “[t]he whole Russia team thought maybe something was happening” due to there having been “some unusual grand jury activity in Washington, D.C. yesterday.”

“The grand jury — Robert Mueller's grand jury typically meets on Fridays. Yesterday, Thursday, there was grand jury activity. We also had some other signs that maybe something was going on this angle — the Roger Stone angle.  So, we showed up at his house this morning — we were the only ones there — and lo and behold, the FBI agents did come and arrest him,” he added.

Camerota later concluded by informing Shortell that “your reporter's instincts were right on this morning” by being “in the right place at the right time to bring us the exclusive video of Roger Stone being arrested on seven indictments from Robert Mueller's team.”

To see the relevant transcript from CNN’s New Day on January 25, click “expand.”

CNN’s New Day
January 25, 2019
6:37 a.m. Eastern

JOHN BERMAN: Alright, we do have breaking news, perhaps major breaking news in the Russia investigation. The FBI has arrested political activist, Trump associate, and friend Roger Stone. CNN's camera was there as it happened. Watch this.

[SWAT TEAM BANGING ON DOOR]

FBI AGENT: FBI, open the door. 

[SWAT TEAM BANGING ON DOOR]

FBI AGENT: FBI, open the door.

ALISYN CAMEROTA: Well, let's bring back Anne Milligram, John Avlon and Garrett Graff. Anne, when you are awoken in the dead of night by the pounding on your door and the shouting “FBI open the door, FBI warrant,” it gets your attention and that's what happened to Roger Stone just a few hours ago and our camera was there to catch it and we now know that he has been indicted about a grand jury on seven counts of five false statements, one obstruction of justice, one witness tampering.

(....)

6:46 a.m. Eastern

BERMAN: We have video, I believe, of the FBI arriving at Roger Stone's residence in Florida to make this arrest. This is — look at the FBI going into arrest Roger Stone early this morning. They're not messing around. 

CAMEROTA: No. I mean, they're in flap jackets. This is very — look at — look at the team of agents that show up. This is very serious stuff. Obviously, they didn't know what was going to happen when they got there, Anne. 

ANNE MILLIGRAN: Right. 

BERMAN: Fascinating to see this before our eyes. 

(....)

6:48 a.m. Eastern

CAMEROTA: I just want to play our exclusive CNN video of are the FBI arriving this morning at Roger Stone’s house. I think that this is important for everybody to see, so let's just play one more time as we go to break, what it looked like outside in the dead of night outside Roger Stone’s home, the long-time Trump associate in Florida of the FBI team arriving to take him into custody. Look at the gear that they're wearing. Look at how — I mean, just look at how serious the FBI is taking this. How many agents there are and this was, obviously, a surprise arrest. His lawyer didn't know this was Roger Stone didn't know this was coming. He was sleeping. This is what happened this morning in Florida at Roger Stone’s home. We have much more exclusive CNN video that we will play right after we take this break. 

(....)

6:53 a.m. Eastern

BERMAN: In the breaking news this morning, the FBI has arrested Roger Stone, the President's political adviser. Exclusive footage you're looking at right now from CNN as the FBI arrives at Roger Stone’s residence in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, taking him into custody. We understand he will be arraigned in Fort Lauderdale later this morning, indicted on seven counts, one count of obstruction, five counts of making false statements, one count of witness tampering. Again, they arrived before dawn there, before 6:00 a.m. or just after 6:00 a.m., a dozen officers we're told. The FBI agent shouted “FBI warrant” and you can see it all play out right here. 

CAMEROTA: This is just remarkable. It's just remarkable to watch, you know, what they call. 

FBI AGENT: FBI, open the door. 

CAMEROTA: Okay, that’s an “FBI, open the door.” And now they're about to say another warning. 

FBI AGENT: FBI, warrant. 

CAMEROTA: “FBI, warrant.” This is called, you know, are the grab shot in the vernacular and it is remarkable to watch this all unfold. 

BERMAN: You can see Roger Stone right there a little bit behind that door and yes, you know, standard operating procedure for the FBI to show up heavily armed. 

CAMEROTA: In riot gear. 

BERMAN: Like this, but they didn't do this for other people connected in the investigation. So it is remarkable that they did this without warning, without any indication of Stone’s lawyers beforehand that this would happen. We don't know also if they executed a certainly warrant on the house. 

CAMEROTA: As Anne just told us, the reason they do that is because they fear the person's going to be a flight risk so they wanted to do it under the cover of darkness with a surprise or they think there's so much evidence inside the room, inside the house that they don't want to give anybody a lead time, a heads up to try to hide some of that evidence. That's what we just watch this morning unfold at Roger Stone's home in Florida.

(....)

7:26 a.m. Eastern

CAMEROTA: We do have breaking news. This is the CNN exclusive video of Roger Stone being arrested by the FBI this morning. These are FBI agents. You can see them in protective gear approaching in the cover of darkness Roger Stone’s door. That is Roger Stone that you can see through the door as the agents pounded on his door and said, “FBI, warrant.” They arrested Roger Stone. He has been indicted by Robert Mueller's team on seven counts and this was the scene that our CNN cameras captured exclusively as they approached his door at his home before sunrise this morning. Joining us now is CNN producer David Shortell. He was on the scene when this happened in Ft. Lauderdale. Tell us everything that transpired this morning. 

DAVID SHORTELL: Alisyn, an extraordinary morning. We were here at 5:00 a.m. waiting for whatever was going to happen. It was dark. 6:00 a.m., just after the hour, about a half dozen police vehicles with sirens but no sounds, sirens — they pull into in front of this Fort Lauderdale home where Roger Stone was presumably asleep. The lights were off in the house. About a dozen officers, FBI agents wearing tactical vests and with large weapons fanned out across his front lawn. One went up to the house and rapped on the door, shined a flashlight inside and said “FBI, open the door.” Moments later as you heard in the video, it said “FBI, warrant.” That's what the agent said. We then saw a light go on the second floor and moments later there was Roger Stone in the doorway. That was our video exclusively you saw shot by Gill DeLarosa. An extraordinary arrest here in Fort Lauderdale this morning. 

CAMEROTA: What was Roger Stone’s reaction? Did you watch them take him into custody?

SHORTELL: We were — we were being moved away as it was happening. We were trying to bring you as much as we could as it was happening. We saw Roger Stone come to the door obscured by an FBI agent. He was not wearing his usual attire, which is, as we know, these fancy suits, he was in sleep wear. He had his grasses on and he did say, “yes I'm Roger Stone” and then we saw him remove them before they took him into custody. But many lights, heavy weaponry, they were taking him away for what we know is a pretty hefty indictment. 

CAMEROTA:  Could you hear Roger Stone saying anything? Was there any kinds of discussion between the agents and Roger Stone? 

SHORTELL: They asked him “are you Roger Stone” and he said “yes.” That was the extent of the conversation that we were able to hear from our perch before we were moved, but it was friendly. As you know, some of these warrants, these arrests, these middle of the night operations they don't always go this went smoothly. The operators — the FBI agents and if out across his line silently before they shined that flashlight in and then shouted “FBI, open the door.” Roger appeared to surrender without any issue. 

CAMEROTA: Absolutely. When the FBI takes this approach, it's because they think there's a possibility of the arrest not going smoothly. I mean, that's why they take all of those precautions, but what's so fascinating is that we've talked to his attorney, the attorney didn't know this was coming. Clearly Roger Stone didn't know this was coming. You were staked out at his house, you didn't know that this was coming. Why were you there in position?

SHORTELL: Alisyn, it's a reporter's instinct. The whole Russia team thought maybe something was happening. There was some unusual grand jury activity in Washington, D.C. yesterday. The grand jury — Robert Mueller's grand jury typically meets on Fridays. Yesterday, Thursday, there was grand jury activity. We also had some other signs that maybe something was going on this angle — the Roger Stone angle.  So, we showed up at his house this morning — we were the only ones there — and lo and behold, the FBI agents did come and arrest him. I'll make a note. When Paul Manafort, President Trump's former campaign director, was arrested, he surrendered at an FBI field office in Washington. He walked in the front door with his lawyers and that was in the morning around 8:00 or 9:00 a.m. I was there, as well, for that surrender. This? Very different.

ALISYN CAMEROTA: Absolutely. No, this is remarkable. What we're watching on the other side of our screen there is remarkable to see how Roger Stone was taken into custody this morning after being indicted on these seven counts. When the FBI yelled — the audio that you caught on the microphones where they say, “FBI, open the door.” And then the next thing they say — well, I'll play it for you and then I want to ask you a question about it. Listen to this audio.

[SWAT TEAM BANGING ON DOOR]

FBI AGENT: FBI, open the door. 

[SWAT TEAM BANGING ON DOOR]

FBI AGENT: FBI, warrant.

CAMEROTA: The next thing — that second thing they say is “FBI, warrant.” Do you have any sense on whether that was an arrest warrant or a search warrant, and whether or not they are now inside his home searching for things?

SHORTELL: Yes, Alisyn, you can actually see behind me that's the block where it all happened. There's a minimal police presence. Now, when we were first here this morning there were maybe about a half-dozen police vehicles that were here for that. We believe it must have been an arrest warrant because he was taken into custody shortly after and you heard that FBI agent say “warrant.” Now, it's unclear to us if they're still there. There are some indications that maybe the law enforcement is not at his house right now as just by the fact that we're not seeing flashing lights, but we're obviously now about 100 yards up the street. They moved us back, literally in the middle of that arrest so we're not able to see what's going in that house right now, but I can tell you that the law enforcement operation here has scaled down immensely.  We know Roger Stone is not here anymore. He was taken away maybe about a half an hour after that arrest and now we know there is a court appearance later this morning where we'll be, at least.

CAMEROTA: David, that looks like an awfully nice neighborhood. I'm sure they are not used to FBI agents in flap jackets showing up just before 6:00 a.m. in the darkness and taking people away from that lovely residential area behind you.

SHORTELL: Yeah, that's for sure.  There's a lot of bikers, joggers, walkers. Even as early as 5:00, 6:00 a.m., people were out walking down — there's an intercoastal waterway here. Some nice water, some nice boats. It's a — it's a very nice neighborhood and Roger Stone had a beautiful house and this is something that the neighbors are not used to. That's what multiple neighbors have been telling me as we've been here on their sidewalk reporting this news all morning.

CAMEROTA: Well, David Shortell, your reporter's instincts were right on this morning. You were in the right place at the right time to bring us the exclusive video of Roger Stone being arrested on seven indictments from Robert Mueller's team. Please — we'll come back to you throughout the morning when you get any sort of information. Thank you very much for being right there.

SHORTELL: Thanks, Alisyn.

NB Daily Trump-Russia probe CNN New Day Video Government & Press Alisyn Camerota John Berman Donald Trump
Curtis Houck's picture


Sponsored Links