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tv   ABC World News Tonight With David Muir  ABC  March 12, 2019 3:30pm-4:00pm PDT

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tonight, breaking news. the growing outrage. the two well-known actresses among 50 people charged tonight in a nationwide bribery scheme. policety huffman of "desperate housewives," lori loughlin of "full house," among those that paid to get their children into elite universities. millions spent. prosecutors claim changes to s.a.t.s and some allegedly paying for their children to be recruited for sports they never even played. also tonight, the deadly plane crash right into a home. emergency crews on the scene tonight. this evening, the growing pressure. the uk, france, germany among the countries now grounding the new boeing max 8. tonight, why they're still flying here in the u.s. what boeing and the faa are now saying. the major storm hitting the midwest tonight, then moving
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east. rob has the new track and timing. our team inside venezuela tonight. the crippling nationwide blackout. we're in hospitals without power, families who say patients are dying. what former vice president joe biden said today about running, it immediately made news. the 911 call for luke perry. what the caller can be heard saying. that plane crash off houston. was it a mechanical error or was it a member of the crew? authorities say the throttle was pushed to maximum. the plane then put into a nose dive. and the nba star seen answerered, responding to a fan in the stands. tonight, what really happened. new action just taken. good evening. and it's great to have you with us here on a very busy tuesday night. and we begin with that bribery scandal, including some famous moms that prosecutors say paid to get their children into elite universities. they accuse actress felicity
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huffman of paying $15,000 to rig her daughter's s.a.t. score. and they accuse actress lori loughlin and her husband paying $500,000 to be recruited for a sport they never played. today, the alleged mastermind, william singer, pleading guilty. federal prosecutors say the investigation is ongoing. and it's already drawing outrage tonight from some who say this is yet another example of the wealthy and connected taking opportunity away from young people who've earned it. abc's kayna whitworth at federal court in los angeles. >> reporter: tonight, actress felicity huffman under arrest, expected in a federal courtroom to face a judge. her husband, actor william h. macy, seen walking inside moments before. huffman is one of 50 people charged in operation varsity blues, including actress lori loughlin, in the largest alleged college admissions scam ever. >> the fbi uncovered what we
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believe is a rigged system, robbing students all over the country of their right at a fair shot to getting into some of the most elite universities in this country. >> reporter: investigators say 33 wealthy parents paying up to $6 million to college consultant william singer, who they say paid off s.a.t. and a.c.t. proctors and bribed coached to help land their children at top schools like yale, georgetown and stanford. the money allegedly funneled tax-free through singer's fake charity. no students have been charged and proscutors say many were unaware. >> are you asking for a bribe? >> reporter: felicity huffman, the former star of "desperate housewives", allegedly paid singer $15,000 to help arrange for her daughter to take the s.a.t. at a site sing er "controlled" where he could arrange for a proctor to "secretly correct her answers." one of the many services they say singer was providing.
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>> we are talking about deception and fraud, fake test scores, fake athletic credentials, fake photographs, bribed college officials. >> reporter: singer today pleaded guilty to multiple charges. >> singer and his associates used stock photos that they pulled off the internet, sometimes photoshopping the face of the child onto the picture of the athlete. >> reporter: prosecutors say one family paid singer $1.2 million, he, in turn, bribed yale's women's soccer coach to recruit their daughter, even though she didn't play soccer. >> you worked very hard for your success. >> reporter: and tonight, actress lori loughlin, the former star of "full house," is facing arrest, too. her fashion designer husband arrested today. the couple allegedly paying $500,000 in bribes to get their two daughters considered as recruits for the usc crew team even though the girls didn't row.
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even submitting a photo of one daughter on a rowing machine. loughlin's daughter olivia, now a freshman at usc and a popular social media influencer, seen seen here, sounding like a lot of kids talking about college. >> i do want the experience of, like, game days, partying. i don't really care about school, as you guys all know. >> reporter: she later apologized, saying she is grateful, calling school a privilege and a blessing. but olivia, who has used her dorm room as a studio to promote her sponsors and her brand. olivia hasn't commented on the charges against her parents. and tonight, prosecutors insisting this alleged scam has real consequences. >> there can be no separate college admissions system for the wealthy and there will not be a separate criminal justice system, either. >> and kayna whitworth reporting in tonight from outside the federal courthouse in los angeles. and kayna, you've learned there's already new fallout tonight in the wake of these charges?
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>> reporter: yeah, david. usc announcing late today they have fired their senior women's athletic director, along with their 14-time national champion water polo coach. stanford also firing their sailing coach and several other universities have placed their implicated coaches or staff members on leave. david? >> kayna whitworth leading us off tonight. kayna, thank you. i want to get right to dan abrams. and you spoke with a half dozen former federal prosecutors tonight, all of whom had differing opinions about what the punishment could really be here. >> yeah, somewhat wildly different. i don't think there's any question that some people are going to spend time behind bars as a result of this. the question is, what about huffman and loughlin? the two of them, even, have very different cases. loughlin is accused of spending $500,000 and doing it twice. huffman accused of $15,000 and doing it once. there's a big difference, legally, in terms of a possible
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sentence between those two. the danger for both of them, though, is that this is the sort of celebrity justice you don't want, because a judge is going to want to send a very firm message to both of them and to the country. >> a lot of parents very angry about this tonight across the country. dan, thank you. in the meantime, we are following a developing headline from ohio tonight. a deadly plane crash, plunging into a home, right in the middle of the afternoon. emergency teams racing to the scene. they're on the scene at this hour. and abc's david kerley covers aviation. >> reporter: a twin engine plane on fire. >> twin engine down. the plane dived into the ground. they are also advising the plane is now on fire. >> reporter: the plane slamming into an ohio neighborhood, debris ripping into the house. >> officers were able to quickly assess that there was nobody present in the home. >> reporter: our affiliate wcpo was told that the piper aircraft owned by a business that used it for aerial photography and surveying. the pilot did not survive. while no one was in that maderia
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home, the crash is reminiscent of a plane hitting a bedroom in a florida home, trapping a 17-year-old girl in a wall, waiting for rescue three weeks ago. she survived. the pilot here also died. >> all right, so, let's get right to david kerley, live tonight. and david, i know it is very early, investigators are on the scene. no word on the cause yet? >> reporter: we know the air craft was in the air for more than four hours, but investigators will have to determine what happened. david? >> david kerley, who covers aviation. david, thank you. meantime tonight, there is mounting pressure on the faa and on boeing to ground the 737 max 8 after that deadly crash in ethiopia. tonight, new action by the uk, germa germany, france, all joining other countries in grounding those new jets. investigators from the ntsb were at correspondent on the scene today learned about those black boxes. abc's matt gutman on the scene in ethiopia. >> reporter: tonight, with the eu and dozens of other countries banning the 737 max 8s, the lead
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investigators on the ground telling abc news they won't even begin to examine the black boxes for days. so, you haven't gotten into it yet, you haven't gotten inside of it yet? he tells me they want to clear the debris field first before they begin to extraekt crucial data from the recorders, potentially holding up a decision by american airlines and southwest, which continue to use the planes about whether to ground their own fleets. the delay by the ethiopians in reading out these boxes is unconscionable. if there's a problem with the airplane, the world needs to know now, not five, six, seven days from now. >> reporter: just six minutes into the flight, the plane slammed into this field. they're taking out the perimeter ishgs expanding the debris field. investigators from the ntsb a boeing assisting the ethiopians, taking pictures as other workers pile up shredded pieces of the fuselage.
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amid pieces of the fuselage that look like they've been through a shredder, there are also reminders that there were people onboard. personal effects like sweaters, books and shoes. back at home, the fightlight at dances union respecting american airlines calling on their ceo to strongly consider grounding the fleet until a "thorough investigation can be performed." boeing's ceo speaking with president trump this afternoon. just moments ago, david, the faa out with a new statement, saying that the agency sees no reason to ground the 737 maxes. now, there are only 72 maxes flying in the u.s. out of thousands of airplanes, but if you are still concerned, both american airlines and southwest list the kind of plane you'll be on during the booking process. david? >> matt gutman on this again tonight. matt, thank you. in the meantime, we turn next here to a major storm moving across the country. blizzard warnings, damaging winds and blooflood alerts for
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of the country right now. it then moves east. southwest tonight already canceling all flights out of denver tomorrow. you can see the salt spreaders on colorado's i-25, with a blizzard on the way. as i mentioned, this is all tracking east. so, let's get right back to meteorologist rob marciano, with us again tonight. hey, rob. >> reporter: hi, david. really looking at two storms that are going to be merging over the central u.s., leading to explosive development already tonight. a tornado watch has been posted for parts of texas and new mexico. flood watches and blizzard warnings have been expanded north and east of this. so, let's time this thing out. looking at this thing to develop tonight and strengthen tomorrow. denver, midday, turning rain to snow. a huge wind footprint with this, 60 to 70-mile-per-hour winds, heavy rain and flooding rains north of this. northwest, 12 to 18 inches of snow with this. and the winds continuing into chicago as we go into thursday, the rains getting to the east coast on friday. david? >> all right, we'll track it right through the end of the week. rob, thank you. next, to the race for 2020 tonight, vice president joe biden in front of a crowd today,
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the firefighters association. they were chanting "run, joe, run." and it was what the former vice president then said that immediately made news. will he take on president trump? here's abc's mary bruce tonight. >> reporter: tonight, the clearest signs yet that joe biden is on the cusp of running for president. >> run, joe, run! run, joe, run. >> thank you, thank you, thank you. >> reporter: speaking to the very supportive firefighters association, the former vice president answering those cheers. >> save it a little longer. i may need it in a few weeks. be careful what you wish for. >> reporter: biden is making it clear he's ready to take on trump. >> in america, everybody gets a shot. that's what the next president of the united states needs to understand, and that's what i don't think this current president understands at all. >> reporter: another sign he's getting in, those who are staying out, like senator sherrod brown and former new york city mayor michael bloomberg. biden says he's close to making a decision. he wanted to make sure his
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family's onboard. and they are. >> i'm grateful to be here today to say thank you. >> reporter: while the president seems to be itching for a fight. he's called biden "weak, both mentally and physically." mr. vice president, what's the holdup, sir? >> no holdup. the car's working. >> reporter: a playful response but biden's answer? an announcement is expected in the next few weeks. >> all right, we'll see. mary bruce live in washington. and democrats wait on joe biden, they are waiting on word from beto o'rourke. he's headed to iowa? >> reporter: yeah, david, it's a high profile visit to campaign for a state senate candidate. now, as for 2020, o'rourke says he and his wife have made a decision, and they're, in fact, already running ads on facebook teasing an upcoming announcement, saying he's ready to share his plans. david? >> mary bruce, thank you. now, to venn way la tonight, in the dark. the crippling backout continues there. a desperate situation growing worse. tonight, our team inside a hospital where the power is out, and families now across venezuela say their loved ones
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are paying with their lives. tonight, the u.s. now responding to claims from the venezuelan president that the u.s. could be behind the blackout. abc's tom llamas is in venezuela again tonight. >> reporter: tonight, venezuel venezuela's most needy trying to stay alive in hospitals just like this one, with little or no power. you can see, this is the situation here in some hospitals in caracas. there is no power. this is a private hospital, they do have a generator, but it's not enough power to power the entire floor at times, you can see patients are being wheeled out in the dark. this is the reality in venezuela. guiding us through this dark maze, the hospital's e.r. chief. the facility invited us in to see the desperation. parts of the hospital relying on a generator, but they have to conserve power, to keep patients like romero andrade alive. since the nationwide blackout six days ago, he's been in a coma, battling colon cancer. his daughter tells me they were treating him using flashlights. the director of the hospital
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telling me they are running out of time,. already, they've sent some patients home. >> i have 67 years, never in my life i have seen something like this. >> reporter: all of this, as reports of stores being looted while families scavenge for food and water anywhere they can. the crisis on full display right through the center of caracas. families getting water from this polluted river. president maduro is blaming the united states. without proof, accusing u.s. hackers of sabotaging their electrical grid, crippling the nation and leading to chaos. >> and so let's bring in tom llamas, reporting from venezuela tonight. tom, first off, what's the reaction from the trump administration tonight about these claims from president maduro that the u.s. could be behind the blackout? and secondly, are u.s. diplomats leaving as they've been told to do? >> reporter: well, david, secretary of state mike pompeo says the u.s. played no role in the collapse of the electrical grid. he says the real culprit is maduro's, quote, incompetence.
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the u.s. is pulling out all u.s. personnel and secretary pompeo says it's because of a deteriorating situation here in venezuela, and david, we have seen it everywhere since we've been here, people taking baths in that river of filth, to mothers carrying wrong jugs of brown water, to the darkened hospitals, even the airport has no power, david. >> all right, tom llamas, great to have you back in venezuela. tom, thank you. from london tonight, a major blow to prime minister theresa may and her latest brexit deal. lawmakers voting it down. chef had renegotiated parts of it, after her first attempt was rejected in january. the deadline now leaving the european union, less than three weeks away. there is still much more ahead on "world news tonight" this tuesday. the major plant fire. the images coming in at this hour. flames and black smoke shooting into the air. employees said they heard explosions. tonight, the audio from the 911 call for luke perry. what the caller can be heard saying. and overnight, the nba star's angry confrontation with
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a fan in tnd stays. well, tonight here, what really happened. new action just taken. a lot more news ahead right here. at's a company worth? how do you determine the durable value of a business in the transportation industry without knowing firsthand the unique challenges in that sector. coming out here, seeing the infrastructure firsthand, talking with the people behind the numbers creates a different picture. once i know what a business is truly worth, we can make better informed investment decisions. that's why i go beyond the numbers. ♪ ♪ when you have nausea, ♪ heartburn, ♪ indigestion, ♪ upset stomach, ♪ diarrhea... girl, pepto ultra coating will treat your stomach right. ♪nausea, heartburn, ♪ indigestion, upset stomach, ♪ diarrhea... try pepto with ultra coating. h:t salite aut, we reay pre ourselves on makg itasy toet your windshield fixed. >> teacher: let's turn in your science papers. >> tech vo: this teacher always puts her students first. >> student: i did mine on volcanoes.
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i'm back. aleve pm for a better am. next tonight here, the 911 call for luke perry has been made public tonight. a woman calling for help after he suffered that massive stroke. vp, begging them to hurry. here's will carr. >> reporter: tonight, the newly released 911 call just after actor luke perry suffered a massive stroke. listen as the dispatcher peppers a woman with questions about perry's condition. >> is he injured? did he hurt himself? did he fall? is he able to speak with you? is he breathing normally? >> reporter: the "beverly hills 90210" and "riverdale" star is not heard on the call, instead, the chilling request from an unidentified woman at his side, knowing every minute counts. >> hurry up and get here. >> they're on their way. >> reporter: we now know first responders rushed perry from his sherman oaks home to the hospital in less than ten minutes. perry was surrounded by family at the hospital where he died, five days later.
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he was 52, relatively young to suffer a fatal stroke. david? >> will, thank you. when we come back, the major workplace fire erupting today. employees said they heard explosions. we have images from the scene. and overnight, the nba star responding to that fan tonight. the new action just taken. the new action just taken. more in a moment. plete job 't accept from any one else. why accept it from your allergy pills? most pills don't finish the job because they don't relieve nasal congestion. flonase sensimist is different. it relieves all your worst symptoms, including nasal congestion, which most pills don't. it's more complete allergy relief. and all from a gentle mist you can barely feel. flonase sensimist helps block six key inflammatory substances. most pills only block one. and six is greater than one. flonase sensimist.
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crash, the throttle was pushed to maximum and the plane was put into a 49-degree nose dive. investigators are trying to determine if it was caused by a crew member of mechanical failure. to the major plant fire in indiana tonight. employees heard small explosions. forest river plant 59 went up in flames. no injuries reported tonight. and we've learned more this evening after that courtside confrontation in utah. action against the player and the fan tonight. oklahoma city star russell westbrook was fined $25,000 for profanity and threatening a fan during that game between the thunder and jazz. westbrook claims the fan and his wife made a racist comment. the fan denies it. the team banning him from jazz home games. when we come back tonight, america strong. most of us dread the line at the supermarket. but not this one.
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finally tonight here, america strong. the little girl at the supermarket checkout, and the simple act of kindness. it led her to connect in a way that moved her mother and moved us. this might look like a typical moment, a child helping out at the checkout. >> you and isaac here. you're a good team. >> amazing! >> reporter: but it was anything but typical, this mother and daughter, at giant supermarket, harrisburg, pennsylvania. >> there you go. >> reporter: 9-year-old lily has special needs, and her mother told us she rarely interacts this way with strangers, but the cashier, isaac, noticed that lily was watching him intently. he asked, did she want to help? she did. loading each item one by one. mom's heart filling up, along with the grocery bags. >> you're so good at this. >> here, mom.
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>> thanks. >> reporter: in the middle of bagging those groceries, little little proclaims to that young man this. >> i just love you. i love you. >> reporter: i just love you, i love you, she said. and her mom loves isaac, too. >> wow. you did the whole job. how do you feel, lily? >> reporter: a smile from lily, and mom was so moved, they came back to the supermarket with a homemade card and a hug. so, she loved the checkout guy and we love lily. i'm david muir. good night.
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>> make no mistake. these parents are a catalog of wealth and privilege. >> parents, coaches coaches coas facilitiors lied and covered up their crimes. >> good evening, thanks for joining us, i am larry beil. >> and i am ama daetz. colleges including stanford. 50 people in six states d ay arn reinuding the so-called master mind, william singer and john
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vandemoer. >> huffman was arrested this morning and loughlin a warrant for her arrest. >> we believe all of them, parents, coaches and facilitators, lied and covered up their crimes. >> reporter: one of those coaches is sailing coach john vandemoer. >> in return for bribes, these coaches agreed to pretend that certain applicants were recruited competitive athletes. >> reporter: the other way was altering s.a.t.s. >> paying singer between

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