tv NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt NBC February 11, 2018 3:30pm-4:01pm PST
>> all right. thanks very much. one quick correction, there's no 4:00 today. there is an 8:00 tonight. enjoy the olympics. take care. games tonight, breaking news, a civil rights lawsuit filed against harvey weinstein claiming civil rights, and an air disaster ke kills all 71 on a russian plane. what caused it to lose altitude and crash. the white house in damage control. top aids hand the domestic abuse allegations against a white house staffer, and, also defend the embattled chief of staff as the president prepares to unveil his plan to shore up america's infrastructure, we look back at a near disaster that highlights how much work needs to be done, and the ride of a lifetime for an american snowborder sensation who never expected gold.
this is "nbc nightly news" with lester holt. good evening, everyone, from pyeongchang, south korea. first, breaking news on the sexual harassment allegations against harvey weinstein. they filed a lawsuit late today alleging vicious treatment of employees at weinstein's company like threats of violents and employing a group of worker there to facilitate sexual conquests for the producer. the suit comes as law enforcement in multiple jurisdictions are investigating possible criminal violations. here's the latest developments. >> reporter: the civil rights lawsuit filed by the new york attorney general details allegations against not just harvey weinstein, but his brother, robert, and the weinstein company claiming they repeatedly broke new york law by failing to protect employeeemployees. it's the result of an
ongoing four-month investigation alleges the company employed a group of women whose primary job it was to facilitate weinstein's sexual conquests. the suit details allegations of demands for quid pro quo sexual activity, threats against female employees, unwelcomed sexual contact, and the existence of a document nicknamed "the bible" instructions for sexual encounters referred to as personal. the suit alleges the company's human resources director was not empowered to address harassments, and when employees did complain, those claims were sometimes forwarded to harvey weinstein. the lawsuit comes as variety reports the company was just hours from a half billion dollar sale, which now might be scuttled by the suit. >> the attorney general is seeking money for those victims where those victims otherwise have not been able to get recovery. >> reporter: harvey weinstein previously denied all allegations
of nonconsensual sex and no criminal charges have been brought against him. his attorney had no comment on the civil rights suit. today, new york's attorney general called the violations egregious saying the investigation is ongoing. nbc news, new york. on the heels of 2017, what was the safest year ever in commercial aviation, tragedy struck in the skies over russia today. a jetliner with 71 people on board crashed outside moscow killing everyone on board. nbc has late details now. >> reporter: in a snow covered field in a moscow suburb, burnt fragments of the plane, but no survivors. the flight carried 65 passengers and six crew when it took off from russia second busiest airport at 11:22 a.m. local time flying from moscow to the city of horst in southern russia, but minutes after takeoff, the plane lost
altitude and speed and vanished from radar. security video capturing the moment of impact. the wreckage found just 25 miles southeast of moscow. emergency crews rushing to the scene. relatives in anguish at the airport as news spread their loved ones would never arrive in horst. the plane was like this one and russian authorities recently banned the airline from flying internationally for a short period of time because of a security violation. tonight, authorities are investigating the cause of the crash as families are left waiting for answers. nbc news. in the united states, investigators are trying to figure out what caused the deadly helicopter crash in the grand canyon. the sightseeing flight took off from las vegas and crashed in a remote area called quarter master canyon, three killed and four
seriously injured. in 2001, the same tour company was involved in another crash that killed six people. the company said it safely flies 600,000 tourists over the southwest every year. some of president trump's top aides defended the white house chief of staff today voicing new confidence in john kelly. at the same time, they tried to clarify a tweet from the president that caused more controversy this weekend. nbc's kelly o'donald has more now from the white house. >> reporter: dispatched by the white house today, senior trump officials on a mission to safeguard an embattled chief of staff. >> saying general kelly's doing a great job and he has full faith in him. >> absolute confidence in general kelly. >> the fact they talk about the chief's departure is many adieu about nothing. >> reporter: john kelly, four-star marine general, six month tenure has been rocky before. >> i don't think i'm being fired today. >> reporter: his credibility and leadership under scrutiny after an fbi background check turned up allegations
of spousal abuse against rob porter, former top aide, who denied the allegations. officials say kelly's initial support for porter was overtaken by additional evidence. >> once you learn the extent of the allegations that you have tolerance for it, and general kelly had no tolerance for it. >> reporter: the president exacerbating outrage when the saturdays tweet complained about false allegations and aides were cleaning up. >> women and men victims of domestic violence. >> reporter: today's circling of the wagon, and kelly telling nbc news friday he has not offered to resign. >> in the end, we hear from john kelly what we knew, and we have not heard that from him yet, and i think the president needs to hear that before evaluating competence. >> reporter: and, today, the president has no public events, and even as rain here kept him inside, he steered clear of adding fuel to the fire. he expect kept tweets to less controversial subjects. instead, talking about
condolences for ohio officers killed on duty and offering a political endorsement to a pennsylvania friend. tomorrow, he'll try to move things forward on an issue that he has yet to see any traction, inviting state and local officials here to talk about infrastructure. lester? >> kelly, thank you. as the united states navigates a tense relationship with iran, the country marked the 39th anniversary of the islamic revolution. there was a massive display of support following weeks of anti-government protests. nbc reports now from tehran. >> reporter: today, the faithful flooded the streets of iran's capital city, but all is not well in islamic republic. the anniversary usually marks widespread displays of anti-americani anti-americanism, music, with only a few u.s. flags burned in protest. although large crowds have come out to celebrate the anniversary of the revolution, for many
iranians, this is been the winds of content. earthquake, pollution, protests, and thawing prices leaving questions unanswered. just weeks ago, anti-government demonstrations rocked the establishment, and they were followed by small, but significant women's protests over the mandatory vail. >> that we are varied in iran, can be unprecedented. >> reporter: now, more than ever, iran's future is tied to america's. this president telling me iran will not negotiate the nuclear deal or missile programs. the president trump said if less significant changes are made, he will not waive nuclear sanctions. >> iran is not living up to the spirit of the deal. >> reporter: changes iran seem unwilling to make, leaving the future predictably
unpredictable. nbc news, tehran. a big weekend here in pyeongchang. the u.s. winning its first medal at these olympic games, not just any medal, but the winner, a 17-year-old from silverthorne, colorado, whose name is red, and now has gold. kate snow with the action covered. >> one more jump to navigate. >> reporter: for the u.s., the first golden moment. red gerard did not expect to win a medal here, but on the third run of the day, he got creative and nailed every trick. you seem, like, surprised by all of this. >> are you kidding me? i mean, yeah, i was not supposed to make finals, so, i mean, to make finals and get a gold, it's beyond me, like, i said, it's crazy. >> reporter: the six of seven kids, 17 members of his family, here to cheer him on. braving lows in the single digits and high winds. >> the wind can catch your board, and then you got no control once the wind catches you, you know, it
messes with you. >> reporter: women's slope style snow boarding postponed, and men's downhill postponed as well, and on practice run, skiers put tape on the noses. >> so we don't get frostbite going 80 miles per hour. >> reporter: the forecast for the next several days is more wind and chance of snow, but team usa is on a hot streak, and chris madezer got a gold in lose. >> i'm going to crash or get the medal. that was the mentality. we went for it. >> reporter: on the ice, the u.s. women's hockey team hungry for gold. >> any time you get a victory, it's a good day. >> in the team figure skating, u.s. is in third before finals tonight, and brad bradie tennell made her debut. >> skated clean. >> it was amazing. it was so much fun. >> reporter: mikaela was set to run in the first event hours from now, but giant slalom was postponed because
of high winds, lester. >> crash or gold. quote of the day. >> reporter: that's right. >> thank very much, kate. we got a taste of it in the opening ceremony, some of south korea's innovative technology on display here in pyeongchang. there's virtual reality, next generation cell phone capability, and a lot of robots as our miguel almaguer previews what may be in store for the rest of us. >> reporter: the moment an olympic torch carrying robot, symbolic for south korea, innovation walking the country into the future and part of its proud past. at the olympics, robots will debut at several venues, a world stage for the nation's technological breakthroughs. >> the robot age will come. >> reporter: this professor helped design the robot who passed him the torch.
>> in your future, the robot and humans should live together and work together. >> reporter: at the korean advanced institute of science and technology, we were shown how these robots could one day be sent into disaster zones or help security teams. of the 85 robots deployed for the games, many of them have been developed right here in this room, with millions of dollars being spent on research, some of this technology will be ready in the coming years. robots can already pour coffee. samsung's virtual reality experience is in the athletes perspective. >> robotics have had -- i think it's very close to our hearts because we grew up watching it so much. >> reporter: innovation helped turn south korea's economy from one of the poorest to one of the richest. now, it can help glide us all into the
future. miguel almaguer, nbc news, seoul. still ahead as we continue tonight, a disaster averted one year ago, but it highlighted the dangers of a crumbling infrastructure as the dangers of a crumbling infrastructure as the if your moderate to severe ulcerative colitis dangers of a crumbling infrastructure as the or crohn's symptoms are holding you back, and your current treatment hasn't worked well enough, it may be time for a change. ask your doctor about entyvio, the only biologic developed and approved just for uc and crohn's. entyvio works at the site of inflammation in the gi tract and is clinically proven to help many patients achieve both symptom relief and remission. infusion and serious allergic reactions can happen during or after treatment. entyvio may increase risk of infection, which can be serious. pml, a rare, serious, potentially fatal brain infection caused by a virus may be possible. this condition has not been reported with entyvio. tell your doctor if you have an infection,
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collapse in california. it was a reminder of the ageing infrastructure, a problem president trump addresses tomorrow as he releases a plan to deal with the issue. steve patterson has the details. >> feels like a cloud over everything. >> reporter: it's the moment jenna cannot stop replaying in her head. >> 30 foot wall of water, nay said was coming. >> reporter: a year ago, a failure at the nation's tallest dam threatened a catastrophic wall of water. >> this spillway is the size of a freeway. >> reporter: used to control the water level, forcing 200,000 people in its path to evacuate. >> it was just panic. people were running in the streets, cars were speeding through town. >> reporter: last month, an independent report found inherit to the maintenance of the spillway, problems the report noted were made worse by decades of complacency and missed opportunities to ensure the dam's safety. josh branch was the
lead investigator. >> the problem that could have been identified and could have been avoided. >> reporter: in response, the owners and operators of the dam stated safety is their primary goal, adding, we are committed to using the information in the report and other lessons learned to strengthen and improve dam operations. the dam's battered spillway has been rebuilt, but the cost here keepi ining ins rising. they put the response at $1 billion. the american society of civil engineers rates the country's infrastructure a dplus and says $2 trillion is needed to fix it. >> the nation's infrastructure fails to meet our needs. >> reporter: the white house called for congress to come up with a plan, but so far pledged just $200 billion in federal money or 10% of the estimate. residents hope the crisis serves as a warning to maintain old structures while building new ones. >> there is hope this whole situation brings
about some much needed change. >> reporter: a wakeup call she hopes is loud enough to prevent another panic from happening again. steve patterson, nbc news, orville, california. back in a moment with a story of a young woman who beat the odds in a long journey to these olympic games. and the wolf huffed and puffed... like you do sometimes, grandpa? well, when you have copd, it can be hard to breathe. it can be hard to get air out, which can make it hard to get air in. so i talked to my doctor. she said... symbicort could help you breathe better, starting within 5 minutes. symbicort doesn't replace a rescue inhaler for sudden symptoms. symbicort helps provide significant improvement of your lung function. symbicort is for copd, including chronic bronchitis and emphysema. it should not be taken more than twice a day. symbicort contains formoterol. medicines like formoterol increase the risk of death from asthma problems. symbicort may increase your risk of lung infections, osteoporosis, and some eye problems.
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cinderella story. ♪ a dream is a wish your heart makes ♪ >> reporter: clenching the championship in figure skating, the winning program was appropriately set to music from cinderella. >> i chose it because i loved the character. i loved the character for as long as i can remember at 2 years old. >> that's when her mother made her a dress for halloween, or at least that was the plan. >> she put the dress on every single day. >> reporter: bradie was 2 years old when she fell in love with skating. >> how many people go through life looking for their passion and never finding it, and here she finds a passion at two and a half years old. >> reporter: for the past decade, she's trained at twin links ice pavilion in chicago, but a role model to the next generation. >> so excited she's going to go to the olympics. >> reporter: a home ice hero. >> to see my closest friend getting her dream, it's just -- it's amazing.
>> reporter: but that dream wasn't an easy one to reach. as a child, bradie struggle with a hip program affecting her coordination and wore orthod orthodics for years. >> she struggled for years, fell on the ice, and you couldn't jump at 5 years old. >> reporter: on top of that, she fractured her back twice in 2015 and 2016, missing three months of practice each time. was there a point dealing with this broken back where you thought, this is it, i'm not going to be able to do this again? >> no, definitely not. i never gave up on myself, and i told myself that if i could make it through this, i can make it through anything. >> reporter: still, few considered her a contender until november when she stunned the skating world winning a bronze medal at an international competition. she carried that m momentum into january when cinderella's
soundtrack carried her to the u.s. title and the olympic team. >> the fairy tale just keeps going on and on. >> reporter: this is a cinderella story? >> feels like it now. >> reporter: the rise of a skating princess who proves dreams really do come true. joe friar, nbc news, san jose. when we come back, we'll stay on the ice and tell you the story about an american hockey family and the sisters who find themselves competing on two different teams here in pyeo ♪ no, please, please, oh! ♪ (shrieks in terror) (heavy breathing and snorting) no, no. the running of the bulldogs? surprising. what's not surprising? how much money aleia saved by switching to geico. fifteen minutes could save you fifteen percent or more.
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fascinating as their path to pyeongchang. >> reporter: at times, the relentless pursuit of an olympic dream can feel like a lonely endeavor, unless you're hannah and marissa brand. >> always best friends, did everything together including playing hockey. >> always pushed me to be better. >> they adopted marissa at four months old and just before she was to arrive from korea, found out they were also expecting. growing up, they were inseparable. >> we went to korean culture camp. i hated it, but she loved it. >> reporter: even though on the ice, they began figure skating together, but it was not hannah's thing. >> i missed having her with me so i went to hockey to be with her. i give it back to her, and she to me. >> we got in trouble for overpassing. >> between one another? >> yeah. >> uh-huh. >> reporter: standout
college players, but the olympics has always been an obsession. >> like, mom, mom, how are they going to find me? like, who is going to find you? well, how are they going to find me for the olympics? >> reporter: after coming achingly close for sochi, she focused all the energy on pyeongchang. marissa was finishing school, planning a wedding, leaving hockey behind, but out of the blue, she got a call to try out for south korea's hockey team. >> i don't speak the language or no anyone there, so when i got there, it was pretty terrifying. >> reporter: marissa and the other imports as the ones recruited from north america are called, are reveling in being able to honor their heritage. >> now i'm, like, proud to be korean and okay with saying that. >> ambassador for hockey and also an ambassador for all adoptees in the u.s., coming from korea or anywhere. >> reporter: meanwhile, hannah earned her spot on team usa scoring two
key goals against the arch rival, canada, in a pre-olympic matchup. >> it's a back of the net goal! guess who, hannah brand! >> reporter: since the u.s. and south korea play in different divisions, it's unlikely the two will have to faceoff on olympic ice, but they will be there together. as sisters. nbc news, minnesota. we appreciate you spending part of your evening with us. that is "nightly news" for this sunday night. the o lilympics are coming up next. i'm lester holt reporting from pyeongchang. from all of us at "nightly news" thank you for watching. good night. plug-in hybrid,
♪ good morning from south korea. and welcome to tonight's primetime broadcast, presented by coca cola. a good monday morning from pyeongchang, and the start of a new week here. competition all across the olympic host city. though at the alps, the alpine ski venue, extreme win. postponement of the women's an