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tv   NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt  NBC  January 10, 2018 5:30pm-6:01pm PST

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as long as she doesn't eat me. >> thanks for joining us here. lester holt is next for nightly news. >> bye. tonight, a desperate search for the missing in california. >> we don't know where she is. >> dramatic new rescues in that mud slide disaster. including a newborn baby plucked from a rooftop. and oprah giving a firsthand tour of the damage. president trump changing his tune on being interviewed by robert mueller. after previously saying he was 100% willing, what he's saying now. the flu emergency and hospitals running out of i.v. bags, handing out gatorade instead. tonight, a father's warning. >> don't let it go. get it taken care of. >> his message after losing his son. the teacher handcuffed and forcibly removed from a school board meeting after asking the superintendent about salaries. she's telling her story only to nbc news.
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and all the money in the world, but a big pay gap between co-stars. why did mark wahlberg reportedly make over a million dollars for reshoots while co-star michelle williams reportedly got less than $1,000? a hollywood uproar. this is nbc "nightly news" with lester holt. good evening, everyone. as we come on the air in the west. distraught family members and neighbors have joined the grim search under way in california tonight for the missing in neighborhoods swept away by mud slides. there have been some dramatic rescues today from homes that are up to their rooftops in mud. but also a rising death toll. at least 17 following this week's torrential rains. more than a hundred homes destroyed. and for some of those trapped, time is running out. the disaster is taking place two hours north of los angeles in montecito. that's where we start with our national correspondent miguel almaguer. >> reporter: tonight in montecito, the heartbreak is as overwhelming as the
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destruction. >> i don't know where she is. >> reporter: this is where hayden gower is searching for his mother, 69-year-old josie. >> the water and mud just flew in. it took them by surprise. >> reporter: the grandmother of three was home when a wall of mud barreled through her bedroom. >> i don't know how far she could have been swept. i don't know. i don't know where she is. >> reporter: in the hills outside santa barbara, neighbors, friends and family are searching for loved ones. at least 17 are unaccounted for. james and alice mitchell, retirees, were home when the storm hit. >> i don't know where my parents are. it's a horrific feeling. total devastation. their place looks like a war zone. >> reporter: rescue teams plucked more than 50 survivors after the powerful winter storm. we were there yesterday when firefighters
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discovered 14-year-old lauren canton buried alive for more than six hours. >> i thought i was dead there for a minute there. >> reporter: friends say her mother was also rescued, but tonight lauren's father and brother are missing, feared to have been washed away. the team that saved lauren is searching for her family today. oprah winfrey posting on social media from her montecito home. >> that's my neighbor's house, devastated. and debris is everywhere. >> reporter: the first of at least 17 victims has been identified as roy roeder. his wife survived the slide. tonight, the rescue effort is growing more desperate. hayden gower is running out of time. >> i don't know what to do. i don't know. i haven't found her, so i'm going to do everything i can. >> reporter: at least a hundred homes have been damaged. this is what so many
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look like, bedrooms and bathrooms buried under five feet of mud. remember, this storm struck at 4:00 a.m. for those that made it outside, this is what they faced, massive boulders and a mud flow that stretched several city blocks. even if you could get outside, many could not outrun this disaster. lester? >> it is a remarkable and heartbreaking scene. miguel almaguer tonight, thank you. turning to another big story. president trump now casting doubt over whether he would submit to an interview in the special counsel's russia probe and turning up the pressure on congress to hammer out a new deal on immigration with the clock ticking. nbc's peter alexander has details for us. >> reporter: president trump tonight refusing to say whether he'd agree to a possible interview with special counsel robert mueller. >> we'll see what happens. i mean, certainly, i'll see what happens. but when they have no collusion and nobody's found any collusion at any level, it seems unlikely that you'd even have an interview. >> reporter: that comment muddying the president's previous commitment to sit down
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with investigators in the russia probe. >> 100%. >> reporter: the president again today repeatedly attacking his former rival, now 428 days removed from the 2016 election. >> hillary. hillary clinton. hillary, my opponent. welcome back to the studio. nice to have you. >> reporter: the reality tv star turned president earlier giving the cabinet room a new nickname and reaffirming his desire to resolve the legal jeopardy facing nearly 800,000 undocumented immigrants or dreamers. >> we want to see something happen with daca. it's been spoken of for years. >> reporter: but later showing no willingness to budge on his top demand. >> we need the wall. we have to have the wall for security purposes. security is number one. so the answer is have to have the wall. >> reporter: adding to the uncertainty, a federal judge's decision overnight to temporarily block the administration's action to end the daca program. >> nobody, not even the president of the united states, is above the law. >> reporter: the white
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house blasting the move at outrageous even as lawmakers insist they're increasingly optimistic they'll get a deal on daca. before dawn today, federal immigration agents stormed nearly 100 7-eleven convenience stores nationwide. an aggressive search for undocumented workers. more than 20 arrests in all. as for the president's insistence that an interview with the special counsel would seem unlikely, tonight a source familiar with the investigation tells nbc news, a sit-down with robert mueller is still under discussion. lester. >> peter alexander, thank you. maybe it's hit you or someone you know. let's talk about the flu emergency, now going from bad to worse across the country. the outbreak now widespread in 46 states. over 40,000 cases, that's three times more than this time last year. now there's a shortage of all things of i.v. bags making it more difficult to get crucial fluids in dehydrated patients. we send nbc news medical correspondent dr. john torres, an e.r. doc himself, to the front lines at mass general in boston.
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>> reporter: kyler bachman, once a healthy athlete in pennsylvania, now dead at 21. his mother in shock. >> i just think he ignored it and thought it would go away like most people. >> reporter: in new york, a surge of patients hospitalized at montidies. >> you are coughing as well? >> reporter: across the country, a dire situation as flu tightens its grip in almost every state stretching resources thin. >> i need you to bring some gatorade. >> reporter: at boston's mass general today, many patients who need critical fluids are getting gatorade instead of an i.v. >> we're at all-time low. >> reporter: the bags are in short supply at hospitals everywhere after hurricane maria slammed major manufacturing plants in puerto rico. are you getting new supplies at all? >> right now in the small bag products, we're not getting any new supplies. >> reporter: none. so that the flu impact is going to make it even worse. >> could make it worse. with the flu trends we're seeing so far, we're very worried. >> reporter: worry also near hard-hit dallas.
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this ambulance service scrambling to keep up with a 600% increase in calls for help. healthcare workers there are considering triage tents like these popping up across california, trying to handle the spike in flu cases. and from kyler's grieving father, this warning. >> whenever you have fever and you have it multiple days, just don't let it go. just get it taken care of. >> reporter: today the fda said it's still not too late to get your flu shot. even though it might not protect you 100%, it can alleviate your symptoms. and with the i.v. fluid shortage, it's especially important that everyone do everything they can to stay healthy. lester? >> dr. john torres in boston tonight, thank you. tonight, there's a new push to solve one of the world's most baffling mysteries. where is malaysia flight 370? it's been nearly four years since that plane vanished with few traces found even after a massive search that lasted three years and a price tag of $160 million.
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now the malaysian government has agreed to pay an eye-popping reward if it's found. nbc's tom costello has been covering this story from the beginning. >> reporter: in the vastness of a southern indian ocean, a new strategy to find mh-370. texas-based ocean infinity will send eight underwater drones to search 9,000 square miles, roughly the size of vermont. but unlike the previous searches, these drones would not be tethered to the surface. >> without the cable, you get less noise, so the quality of the data is better. >> reporter: today the malaysian government agreed to pay ocean infinity up to $70 million but only if it finds the plane within 90 days. >> most important, they must find the debris field. >> reporter: malaysia 370 disappeared on march 8th, 2014, with 239 people on board. while pieces of wreckage washed ashore
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in the western indian ocean, a three-year search failed to find the plane itself, investigators calling it almost inconceivable. the new search ship will launch underwater drones that can descend more than three miles beneath the surface with new sonars, sensors and cameras. >> we've had a longer time now to look and review and analyze the data, and that should give us a better area to search in than we've had in the past. >> reporter: tonight, renewed hope of solving the world's haunting aviation mystery. tom costello, nbc news, boston. now to a story we've been reporting on, the scandal rocking the veterans affairs administration. more than three years after a major uproar, wait times at some v.a. hospitals are once again intolerable. some patients in eastern colorado are waiting more than a month for appointments. the problem officials blame on higher demand, higher than ever. nbc's gabe gutierrez has the story from denver. >> reporter: after serving in the army for seven years allison bush now suffers from nerve
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damage and is worried she might have multiple sclerosis. >> everything was falling apart. i couldn't take care of my kids. i couldn't do my job. >> reporter: she says she's waited 3 1/2 months for a primary care appointment at her local v.a. and another 60 days for an mri. is that acceptable? >> no, absolutely not, not when it's either that or nothing. what are you supposed to do? >> reporter: the average wait for primary care new patient appointments at the denver v.a. has topped 42 days, that's nearly twice the national average. denver leads the nation with the longest delays, even worse than the main facility in phoenix where a wait time scandal first erupted in 2014. delays there are believed to have contributed to patient deaths. now the agency has promised greater transparency with data available online. in denver, wait times are reviewed every morning. >> in october we completed 10,350 appointments. >> reporter: sallie
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houser-hanfelder runs the v.a.'s eastern colorado healthcare system. >> my highest priority is getting access fixed. >> reporter: she attributes the long wait times to a perfect storm in denver. 11,000 new veterans seeking care in the past two years and the shortage of doctors and nurses. >> working toward getting it down has taken us a long time. and we need to speed up our process. >> reporter: that process is working for retired air force pilot dennis orr who has had three knee surgeries. >> i would take the v.a. care over any other place, hands down. >> reporter: but for allison bush, the wait for that care is agonizing. >> people need help. they need help. they served our country. i mean, you asked them to put their lives on the line, and now you can't take care of their lives once they're back. it's ridiculous. >> reporter: years after a scandal, she wonders what the v.a. is waiting for. now to the pay gap between men and women taking center stage in
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hollywood tonight after reports that an a-list actor, called back for reshoots, made over a thousand times more than his a-list co-star for doing the same thing. some big stars speaking out and speaking their minds. we get more on all of it from nbc's kristen dahlgren. >> i have no money to spare. >> reporter: tonight, outrage over "all the money in the world" and all the money star mark wahlberg reportedly made compared to co-star michelle williams. >> set my boy free. >> reporter: according to "usa today," wahlberg earned $1.5 million for reshooting scenes in the movie while williams earned less than $1,000 in per diem fees for her retakes. the do-overs necessary after kevin spacey was dropped from the film and replaced by christopher plummer amid allegations of spacey's sexual misconduct. hollywood stars were quick to weigh in. jessica chastain tweeting, she deserves more than 1% of her male co-star's salary. sophia bush calling it hard evidence of the
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gender gap negotiated by the same agents, no less. williams and wahlberg are both represented by william morris endeavor. neither the agency nor its stars have responded to requests for comment. >> i was told she was aware of the disparity. did she agree because what she was facing a choice of do it for this month or there will be no movie. >> reporter: last month director ridley scott told "usa today" everyone did the reshoots for nothing. in previous interviews williams said she was willing to waive her salary to save the film. >> i've just been heartsick for weeks thinking about how this thing that we loved making was going to be all for naught. >> reporter: many now asking if "all the money" should have given more to its female co-star. kristen dahlgren, nbc news, new york. still ahead, the teacher making national headlines after video showed a law officer handcuffing her. tonight, she speaks to us exclusively. also, the growing anger over the nightmare pile-up at major airports.
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we're back now with our exclusive interview with the teacher in that video that's been sparking some outrage. she's speaking to us after cameras caught her being escorted from a school board meeting and handcuffed by an officer for questioning why her boss was getting a raise. nbc's tammy leitner has her story. >> what are you doing? >> reporter: teacher deyshia hargrave is still shaken from this moment. >> i was seriously panicked. i've never been handcuffed in my life. >> reporter: when she was removed from a school board meeting, cuffed and booked. >> stop resisting. >> i'm pretty upset that no one stopped it from happening. >> reporter: the middle school teacher says she questioned the superintendent's $30,000 raise during the meeting. >> how are you going to take that money that is basically taken out of the pockets of teachers? >> reporter: standing up for her fellow teachers who have not had a pay increase in about a decade. >> it just felt like it was a slap in the face to everyone i work with every day.
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>> reporter: this louisiana school board meeting now prompting death threats. >> the calls that are not threats are obscene, horrible, even criticizing my staff. >> reporter: school board president anthony fontana says no one ordered the city marshal to remove the teacher, but fontana defended his actions. >> he was ushering her out of the board meeting and she resisted. >> reporter: arrest records show hargrave was booked into the city jail for resisting an officer and remaining on premises. the city prosecutor says no charges will be filed. >> what are you doing? >> reporter: hargrave has a hard time looking at the video. >> and i teach fifth and sixth graders. i wasn't sure how they would feel about it. >> reporter: but after the support she's received from the community, she says she will continue to fight. >> it's sad that a woman has to be forcibly, violently removed from a board meeting for people to start caring. >> reporter: tammy leitner, nbc news. >> an encounter a lot of people are talking about tonight.
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coming up, top dogs. why the competition for best in show is getting even fiercer. and he's a cop and a caped crusader bringing joy to very brave kids.
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continuing chaos for new york's jfk airport now several days after a blizzard struck and a water main break forced a terminal to be evacuated, more than 5,000 bags separated from their owners remain piled up some outside in the melting snow. some travelers have been told it will take up to two weeks to get their luggage back. now, former transportation secretary ray lahood has been tapped to lead an investigation into this mess. and some new top dogs are joining an exclusive club. the american kennel club is welcoming two new breeds to its roster. the first edition since 2016. and there are the names right up there on your screen. usual spellings and pronunciations. that's the good news. the bad news is they won't be eligible to compete in the
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westminster kennel club show until next year. and this one might leave you a little misty-eyed. 8-year-old bridget kelly in massachusetts got a big welcome from hundreds of fellow students, parents, teachers, even police officers on her first day back at school following a 15-month battle with leukemia. after a stem-cell transplant mom says bridget's cancer is now in remission. we hope it's a great school year for her. we'll take a short break. when we come back, the superhero who also carries a badge. a special mission for kids. "those who serve" is next. hits a tree.
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take a look... people want to know why the truck was in the bike lane. tonight, the city )s unexpected response. stories of survival and rescue, we )re live from the california slide zone. finally tonight, he's kind of like the clark kent of policemen. a mild-mannered patrolman in one of america's largest
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cities who springs into action anywhere for kids who face the kind of predicaments that we can't call 911 for. he's a true supercop and one of those who serve. he is one of america's everyday heroes, a cop protecting the streets of ft. worth, texas, but beneath the uniform and badge lies the heart of a superhero. on the job, he is officer damon cole whose community outreach, appearing as superheroes at local kids events, morphed into something more meaningful. taking this full-time cop and father on heroic missions using his days off to visit sick children wherever superheroes are needed. what prompted you to do this? >> as a police officer you deal with every walk of life. and i was trying to think of a better way to have a better rapport with these kids. >> reporter: even traveling to visit this pediatric hospital in new york. >> i've been to 20 states and seen over a thousand kids.
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>> reporter: it must take an emotional toll on you because you are seeing, in some cases, very sick kids and some kids that aren't going to make it. >> it does. god gives me the strength to keep doing what i'm doing. i look at my little girl, my daughter savannah, and she's my motivation to do what i do. >> reporter: while he receives some donations, the trips and costumes are largely self-funded. a small price to pay, says cole, for lighting up young lives during rough times and for reminding kids that not all superheroes wear a mask and cape, some just wear a badge. >> i always tell them when i meet them, i said, did you know that you're batman's hero. and they look at me in shock. and i'm like, you're my hero. i mean, you get up every day and keep fighting for your life. and they really are the heroes. >> reporter: our thanks to a viewer who tipped us off to this story via our facebook page. and if you know someone who serves
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that we should know about, we'd love to hear from you, too. that is "nightly news" for this wednesday night. i'm lester holt. and for all of us at nbc news, thank you for watching and good night. right now at 6: the scenic santa barbara the mud and water just came right through the house. >> right now at 6:00, the scene at santa barbara coastline now drowning this mud and the problem runs deep. more deaths and rescues as the region tries to dig out from this devastating mudslide. we're live on the scene. the news at 6:00 starts right now. good evening. thanks for being us with. >> a hundred homes have been destroyed and hundreds more damaged. the images are truly stunning. it's a powerful slide enough to push these cars all the way into the ocean and the heart ache is
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just immeasurable. at last check 17 people have died and the number of missing people has risen to 17. this is what it looks like on the ground in montecito. that's an upscale neighborhood buried under a sea of mud. >> the u.s. coast guard spending much of the day plucking people from the roof tops. helicopter rescues are mandatory. here is where it's happening. in the same area of last month's thomas fire. the largest recorded fire in state history. the big area in red is the burn scar. the gray area is where the mudslides are. we have the very latest on this search and rescue. >> reporter: the darker it gets, the more difficult it becomes for search and rescue crews to do their job. i'm told by the santa barbara

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