tv NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt NBC April 4, 2016 5:30pm-6:01pm PDT
tonight, critical clash. cruz and trump making a mad dash to the finish in wisconsin. the stop trump movement hoping to score a dramatic victory. secret bank bombshell rocking the rich and powerful. world leaders, including putin, royal families scrambling after the biggest leak after exposes a shadowy web of hidden fortunes. where's spring. millions hit with another massive arctic blast and the freeze is far from over. bizarre behavior. why did a flight aten and open the door and deploy the evacuation slide when apparently nothing was wrong? >> and life-saving wonder drug. they cut cholesterol, but what about the millions who say the side effects are so painful they can't even take them? tonight, good news. "nightly news" begins right now.
>> announcer: from nbc news world headquarters in new york, this is "nbc nightly news" with lester holt. good evening. one camp wants to beat donald trump. the other just wants to stop him. ted cruz and the stop trump movement are each building their hopes on wisconsin, where polls show cruz leading trump ahead of tomorrow's primary. but it will take more than a trump loss by itself to sidetrack his march to the nomination, which is why both efforts are tonight counting on a surge of momentum to level the playing field going forward. it happened to be virtually the same strategy playing out on the democratic side with bernie sanders trying to turn the tables on hillary clinton. we have it all covered starting with nbc's hallie jackson, who is in wisconsin this evening. hallie, good evening. >> reporter: good evening, lester. donald trump has thousands of people packing his rallies here in wisconsin, but he'll need more support than that to avoid a loss to ted cruz. but it's not trump who
has to win in this state. it's the never trump movement needing a victory now more than ever. closing in fast, the wisconsin finish line less than 24 hours away. the last push through a state that matters more than anyone thought it would, not just for its 42 delegates but for the momentum it could give the stop trump movement. >> they realize that donald screams and yells a lot, but he has no solution. >> reporter: it's a dramatic reversal from only a month ago, when this looks like trump country. blue collar, more moderate, an open primary. but since then, ted cruz has surged more than 20 points, fueled by the stop trump movement making milwaukee ground zero, led by a group of conservative talk radio hosts, like charlie sykes. >> this is not a conservative candidate. this is a clown car, and the rhetoric that worked elsewhere does not work in a state like wisconsin. >> reporter: it's why tomorrow is the best shot for anti-trump groups to show they can stop h as several strategists tell nbc news new ads
are on the way beyond the badger state. >> 42 delegates in wisconsin are critical to stopping donald trump. >> reporter: but a win here would prove trump really is teflon even after his toughest week yet. battling back criticism from economists to say he's wrong to warn we're headed for a crash. >> what i said is we're going to go into a massive recession, but i also say if i'm president, that's not going to happen. >> reporter: plus a revealing new profile claiming he wears a bulletproof vest sometimes, even as he comes under fire for rallies that can turn violent. he says he can start acting presidential whenever he wants. so far, it's the same trump on the trail. that's fine with linda hanson, who says she's sticking with him no matter what. >> you're never, ever, ever changing me. i'm totally for him. >> reporter: hallie jackson, nbc news, milwaukee. >> reporter: i'm kristen welker traveling with the clinton campaign. it's a question of math versus momentum.
bernie sanders is looking for a win in wisconsin, but anything short of a blowout wouldn't do much to dent hillary clinton's nearly insurmountable delegate lead. >> i don't want to get hillary clinton more nervous than she already is. >> reporter: sanders touting his slim lead in wisconsin today where his message is rez natsing with throngs of voters. on the heels of winning five states, sanders is gaining momentum, the race increasingly combat if. >> she's already under a lot of pressure. so don't tell her this. i think we win here, we win in new york state, we're on our way to the white house. >> reporter: the reality, clinton is ahead by double digits on her home turf of new york, but sanders is slowly narrowing the gap. campaigning here today as the state passed a minimum wage increase. clinton took a familiar, if veiled, swipe at sanders, again painting his policies as unrealistic. >> feels have to be matched with politics. >> reporter: another reality check, his campaign is acknowledging to "the new york times" early missteps which are now
creating a drag on the campaign, saying sanders initially failed to aggressively challenge clinton. late tonight, sanders' aides telling nbc news, the article isn't a sign they're throwing in the towel. >> we think there's a path to the nomination. >> reporter: now the only way sanders can make a play for the top spot, start winning big. really big. >> a big win for sanders means that not only does he have momentum, but that he gets more of the delegates that they have been looking for. >> reporter: as clinton campaigns here in albany, her campaign is releasing a new memo touting her, quote, insurmountable lead, a sign they're trying to project confidence as she faces tough odds in wisconsin tomorrow. tonight, two weeks into spring and millions across the country are wondering where is it? a nasty blast of arctic air and snow is making for a miserable start to the season. nbc's dylan dreyer is in the thick of it. >> reporter: for 15 million people today, spring was nowhere in sight. >> it needs to stop.
i miss the warm weather. >> reporter: today's snowfall was the second of two clippers to move thrgh the region in 48 hours. expected to drop as much as 6 inches of snow in parts of the northeast, including providence, hartford, and boston. >> april gives us one more slap before winter goes, you know. it happens. >> reporter: slick roads brought dangerous driving conditions throughout the region. one person was killed and a dozen injured in this three-car accident. in upstate new york, numerous people were injured after a tour bus rolled down an embankment and landed on its roof during this morning's heavy snow. for residents in massachusetts -- >> it's like getting a snowball in the face. >> reporter: it's the second straight day of this punishing weather. on sunday, a couple was killed after a tree fell onto their car, crushing it. neighborhoods across the region cleaning up after destructive winds barreled through this weekend. trees uprooted, homes ripped awart.
this home in queens, new york, completely blown over. the baseball season will have to wait one more day in some parts of the country. both the new york yankees and the cleveland indians rescheduled their season openers as mother nature shows no mercy. now, the snow will end tonight. then temperatures plummet. by tomorrow morning, windchills will be mostly in the low to mid-teens. then by wednesday morning, it's likely that we'll tie or break record low temperatures all across the northeast. the worst part about all this, lester, there's really no warm-up in sight. >> dylan, thanks very much. there's late word of a tragedy in tennessee. authorities say five people are dead after a sightseeing helicopter crashed and burst into flames in pigeon forge, southeast of knoxville. witnesses say they saw the chopper crash into trees on the way down, then explode. investigators are on their way to the scene to try and determine the cause. troubling questions this evening about the amtrak train derailment that killed two workers outside philadelphia.
the ntsb is revealing tape of the moment of impact, but investigators say they're no closer to determining what or who is to blame. nbc's tom costello has the latest. >> reporter: south of philly today, a slow ride down the same tracks that were the scene of yesterday's deadly crash. the ntsb said this afternoon cameras on the amtrak train showed maintenance equipment sitting on two sets of tracks just before the crash. >> the video shows that there was construction equipment on the track and work train equipment on the track immediately adjacent to the amtrak train's track. >> reporter: investigators say they don't know why the equipment was there and whether there was some breakdown in communication. palmetto train 89 from new york was headed south to georgia and had just passed philly. as it went through chester, p.a., the amtrak backhoe was sitting right in the train's path. the impact was sudden and violent. an amtrak worker and supervisor on the backhoe were killed instantly. the train's passengers went flying.
on board the train, a doctor from pennsylvania who took these photographs. >> the damage on the train was unbelievable. there was metal. there was broken glass. there was plastic. it looked horrific. >> reporter: just last may, eight passengers were killed, 200 injured in an amtrak accident north of philly, since then, amtrak has finished adding an automatic braking system called positive train control to all of the northeast corridor. in january, we got a firsthand look. >> it's slowing it down for you. >> it just took over control of the train for me. >> reporter: the system should have been programmed to prevent trains from approaching a work zone unless the work crew was on the wrong tracks. >> a constant challenge in the rail industry. >> reporter: the question tonight, if there was human error, where did it occur? tom costello, nbc news, washington. we turn now to the banking bombshell causing shock waves around the world.
the so-called panama papers believed to be the biggest data leak in history are exposing how some of the world's wealthiest and powerful people, including leaders like vladimir putin may be hiding billions offshore. nbc's andrea mitchell has details. >> reporter: vladimir putin, investigators say, at the center of a star-studded list of 12 current and former heads of state, like the king of saudi arabia, even celebrities like jackie chan, connected to controversial offshore bank accounts and companies set up by a secretive law firm head quarted in this building in panama. no one more tantalizing than putin. >> the trails all lead and circle around to one person. >> right. >> in this case, vladimir putin. >> i don't think we'll ever see vladimir putin's name on an offshore company or an offshore bank account, but i think this is probably as close as you'll ever get. >> reporter: putin is believed by u.s. intelligence to be one of the world's richest
men. now investigators say these documents are a road map to how putin could have stashed away billions. the papers point to sergei roldugin, godfather to putin's daughter, placed in charge of the company. then there's putin's banker, uri co-val chuck, already under u.s. sanctions for ukraine, nicknamed by u.s. officials, cashier to the kremlin. and more mystery. another major player in the documents, mikhail less in. the former head of putin's propaganda operation was found dead in this washington, d.c. hotel in november, bludgeoned to death. >> he would have been able to speak about that but not anymore. >> reporter: protests tonight in iceland where the prime minister accused of hiding money denied wrongdoing but walked out of an interview when asked about it. many of these offshore companies are legal, and putin's spokesperson called the vinvestigation an attack against russia. >> i think putin's press barons will now work overtime to make sure this story is buried.
>> reporter: the law firm says it only sets up the companies. it's not responsible for how they're run. no comment from jackie chan. but the justice and treasury departments are already poring through these documents, lester. >> andrea mitchell, thanks. we're now getting an exclusive look at the incredible turnaround for a miracle survivor. doctors had declared a 14-year-old girl dead after a shooting rampage allegedly carried out by an uber driver in michigan. but now a month and a half later, she is making a remarkable recovery. here's nbc's blake mccoy. >> reporter: walking on her own, abigail kopf refuses to be followed by a wheelchair, a stubborn determination that would have seemed impossible six weeks ago. >> you see where she's at today is amazing. she's an amazing kid. >> reporter: abigail was shot in the head at close range by uber driver jason dalton, who confessed to the rampage that killed six people and injured one other. doctors initially declared abbie dead but she surprised everyone, squeezing
her mother's hand that night, and the surprises keep coming. >> she's actually sprinting a little bit. she starts walking a little bit faster than me now. >> reporter: abbie's parents have found support from across the country in letters, scarves, and quilts, too many to count. they're launching a facebook page today to keep people updated on her condition. abbie's road ahead is long. she has recurring nightmares, must learn to eat on her own again. if you notice, abbie always wears a hat. part of her skull will need to be reconstructed. but abbie is pushing forward, amazingly with a smile on her face. >> every street we drive down, you know, i see a cemetery or i see a funeral or just a funeral home, and all i can do is think to myself, i hate to be selfish, but i'm so glad she's not there. i'm glad she's got the willpower to fight like she did. >> reporter: in six weeks, abigail kopf has gone from victim to survivor. blake mccoy, nbc news. >> a story that continues to inspire
us. still ahead, painful side effects. research now confirms that so many patients have complained for years about widely used cholesterol drugs, but now alternatives are offering new hope. also dramatic moments aboard a united flight late today. we'll tell you what a flight attend ant is accused of doing.
many patients say the side effects are just too painful. now for the first time doctors say there's proof that those patients are right. as nbc's rehema ellis reports, they're pointing to new alternatives. >> reporter: some of the most popular drugs in the country are statins, taken by about 25 million americans to lower cholesterol and reduce heart disease. but they can also cause debilitating side effects, muscle pain, weakness, and cramping. reported by 5% to 20% of patients. diane was one of them. >> everything was sore, and every time i moved, i'd get this more of an achy -- a bad achy feeling. >> reporter: for years some doctors thought these complaints might be psych osomatic, all in their heads. but a new study concludes that the pain is real. >> this now confirms for the first time that muscle intolerance to statins is a real problem affecting a significant portion of
patients, and with those patients now, we need to develop alternatives to treat them. >> reporter: the good news is there is potential relief. >> the drug has been approved. >> reporter: already two cholesterol lowering drugs have been approved by the fda. one, repatha, cuts levels of bad cholesterol by more than half according to the new study. diane says the medication changed her life. >> it does the same thing, but it doesn't have the side effects that the statins have. >> reporter: but the bad news is they're expensive. about $14,000 a year. and only fda-approved for people with hereditary high cholesterol. the question now is whether the fda will approve them for a wider group of patients to cut their cholesterol and their pain. rehema ellis, nbc news, new york. up next, before you book your next trip, you may want to find out which airlines were just ranked the best and the worst.
on the very day a deal was announced that alaska airlines is buying virgin america for $2.6 billion, virgin america took the top spot in this year's airline quality rankings which are based on on time performance, mishandled baggage and customer complaints. jetblue and delta rounded out the top three. at the bottom of the rankings were frontier, envoy air, and spirit. meantime, united airlines has removed a flight attendant from duty after she apparently inflated the emergency slide when their plane arrived in houston this afternoon. united says there was never an emergency onboard. as nbc's miguel almaguer reports, this isn't the first time an incident like this has happened. >> reporter: united flight 1246 had just reached the gate in houston when the airline says a flight attendant intentionally deployed the evacuation slide even though there was no emergency. 159 passengers were on board the flight from
sacramento with a crew of six, including the flight attendant for unknown reasons inflated the chute. we hold our employees to the highest standards, united says. this unsafe behavior is unacceptable and does not represent the more than 20,000 flight attendants who ensure the safety of our customers. it's not the first time an escape slide has been deployed. in 2010, a jetblue flight attendant let loose on passengers over the intercom, then pulled the chute's emergency lever before being arrested. steven slater did a year's probation on a charge of criminal miss chief. back in houston, no injuries but questions. tonight that united plane is back in service, but the flight attendant has been removed from her duties as they investigate. miguel almaguer, nbc news. when we come back, as a new baseball season gets under way, how the new voice for a storied team is making history. >> announcer: "nbc
game's most storied franchises is making a change. legendary chicago white sox announcer hawk harrelson is dialing back his schedule, and the new voice in the booth is a longtime fan with a triumphant story of his own. we get more from nbc's ron mott. >> breaking ball, strike three. >> reporter: if jason benetti were doing play by play of his own life, he's call a come from behind victory. >> the sox are on the board. three batters in. >> reporter: a prophetic ending to a school paper written long ago as a young boy. >> i would like to be the white sox sportscaster as long as i don't look like harry caray. >> reporter: benetti dreamed big. >> maybe i will find out one day. yes. >> reporter: wanting nothing more than a job with his beloved hometown chicago white sox. so when the pitch came to do just that on tv this season, he crushed it. this is something you've been thinking and dreaming about for a long time. >> you almost lose that visceral, emotional feeling of getting a job like
this before you get it because you know logically there's not much of a chance at all. >> reporter: born ten weeks prematurely, diagnosed with cerebral palsy, benetti endured numerous surgeries, braces and casts on his legs, and now at 32, he's just one of the guys. >> because he isn't viewed as handicapped. it's just what he is, and not who he is. he is the ultimate broadcaster at a very young age. >> reporter: exceeding expectations is his hallmark, from high school broadcaster, to professional, even earning a law degree in between. >> i used to think that people were discounting my iq when i walked into a room. at the beginning of my career, i'd try to force things and make sure people knew that i knew what i was doing. >> reporter: rising to the challenge every step of the way since that school paper. you got an a? >> i got an a. i better have gotten an a. i was right. >> reporter: bringing
his "a" game. >> rollins to right. >> reporter: ron mott, nbc news, glendale, arizona. that will do it for us on this monday night. i'm lester holt. for all of us at nbc news, thank you for watching and good night. dayaer forr snfoateteis e right now at 6:00 days after a stanford athlete is convicted of sexual assault, student leaders wanting the university to tell them how bad the problem is on campus. i'm peggy bunker in for jessicaing a gary. >> i'm raj mathai. what's the fix? thousands of stanford students answered a university survey about sexual assault on campus but they say stanford needs to do a better job of measuring the extent of the problem. nbc marianne favro is on campus
and some students are demanding a redo of the survey. what changes do they want? >> reporter: they want it to be done in a different format than it was done last spring. now, this survey it was done dramatically differently and under estimated the extent of the sexual assault problem. the university however is calling the survey comprehensive. just last week a jury convicted former stanford swimmer brock turner of sexual assault after witnesses found him on top of an unconscious woman on campus. the university surveyed students about sexual assault in campus climate. of more than 9,000 respondents, less than 2% indicated they had experiences with sexual assault but some student leaders say the survey itself was flawed under estimated the problem and excluded some serious forms of sexual misconduct. they are calli