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tv   NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt  NBC  March 22, 2018 5:30pm-6:01pm PDT

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we'll have an interview at 6:00. and last word from jeff ranieri. >> we vel a little rain coming up. >> we'll see you at 6:00. bye-bye. developing news tonight. the stock market plunges over 700 points amid fears president trump is triggering a trade war. how it could affect the price you pay for many of the things you buy. the president's lead russia lawyer suddenly quits. and nbc news has learned the shake-up is part of preparations for a potential trump sit down with mueller. outrage over a fatal mistake. police open fire on an unarmed man, killing him in his grandparents' backyard. >> gun, gun, gun. >> police now say there was no weapon. chilling new video of the vegas massacre being planned. the killer smuggling his arsenal into the hotel. a new alert about dangers in your home hiding in plain sight. you may think that furniture is
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safe, but "consumer reports" is out with a major new warning. horror on the school bus as an out of control 18-wheeler swerves right in the path. the driver with no time to get out of the way. this is nbc "nightly news" with lester holt. good evening. we begin with breaking news from the white house. president trump announcing general h.r. mcmaster is out as his national security adviser and john bolton is in. this happening right at the time major decisions need to be made on north korea, the iran deal and a wide range of critical issues. we'll have more on all of that in just a moment. but we want to turn to the stock market plunge today. after what many fear was the first shot in a trade war with china. the dow lost over 700 points in what analysts believe is a reaction to trade sanctions against china put in motion by president trump today, fulfilling a promise to level the playing field but at the risk of forcing americans to pay
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more for some imported goods. tonight's china's vow of retaliation has many u.s. industries on edge. we start with chief white house correspondent hallie jackson. >> reporter: tonight, trade war worries igniting after the president signed this order to slap tough tariffs on china. punishment for unfairly stealing technology secrets from u.s. companies, he says. >> we're going to get it taken care of. and frankly, it's going to make us a much stronger, much richer nation. it's probably one of the reasons i was elected. >> reporter: for donald trump, it's promise made -- >> we're going to stand up to china on trade. >> reporter: -- promise kept. not surprisingly, china's not happy. already threatening retaliation. that's where the real risk comes in. if beijing imposes its own tariffs, a trade tit for tat that could hit the u.s. where it hurts, in the farm belt. rob schafer farms a thousand a in illinois on land
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that's been in his family since the 1800s. china is the biggest customer for crops like his, buying up one of every three rows of soybeans grown in this country. >> china could buy them just as easy from brazil and argentina as they can from the united states. >> reporter: schafer worries about what happens to his bottom line if beijing bites back. and so are retailers on those made in china products. >> you could pay more for just about everything you walk into a big box discounter like a walmart, target, best buy. everything from electronics to shampoos to cheap clothing. >> reporter: and as for that staff shake-up you mentioned, lester, the new national security adviser, this has been in the works for weeks. nbc news had previously reported the president was looking to make a change from h.r. mcmaster. now he has, although the president tonight is wishing mcmaster well. his new pick for the position is former diplomat john bolton, a familiar face on fox news. he starts april 9th. >> thank you. that's not the only shake-up we're covering tonight. there's new fallout in
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the russia investigation after president trump's lead attorney suddenly resigned. nbc news has learned the shake-up is part of preparations for a potential trump sit-down with mueller. nbc news correspondent kristen welker has the new details. >> thank you very much. >> reporter: tonight president trump says he's willing to testify before special counsel robert mueller. >> would you like to testify before robert mueller sir? >> i would like to. >> reporter: as his legal team was rocked today, mr. trump's lead outside attorney john dowd resigned. dowd has long opposed the president doing an in-person interview with mueller and sparked a backlash over the weekend when he called for an end to the special counsel investigation, a move that may have set back talks between president trump's and mueller's teams, according to two sources. dowd's ouster may have cleared the way for a face-to-face and the addition of former federal prosecutor joe
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digenova may signal the president is preparing to take a tougher stance. digenova has pushed this conspiracy theory. >> make no mistake about it, a group of fbi and doj people were trying to frame donald trump of a falsely created crime. >> reporter: the president's former top adviser, steve bannon, who was fired, said the addition of digenova sends a strong sign. >> i think president trump's going to war. i think it's very obvious he's going to go to war on this. >> reporter: legal analysts say if the president, who is known for going off script, does agree to an interview with mueller, his lawyers need to prepare him intensely. >> fbi agents or u.s. attorneys, they usually know the answers to most of the questions they're asking you. they're asking just to see if you try to massage the truth. and if you do, you've just committed a crime. >> reporter: as for john dowd, he told me earlier today, i love the president and wish him very well but wouldn't elaborate on exactly why he's leaving. meanwhile, the president's legal
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team is eyeing even more additions as it ramps up. >> kristen welker at the white house, thank you. now to northern california where there's growing outrage over a fatal police shooting. officers opening fire on an unarmed black man in his grandparents' backyard. we're now getting our first look at that shooting. police apparently thinking he was holding a gun now say it was a cell phone. nbc's gadi schwartz has our report from sacramento. we want to warn you, the video you're about to see is disturbing. >> just broke the window. running south. running to the south. >> reporter: officers in a chopper investigating reports of a man vandalizing cars saying they have a visual on the suspect. >> all i can tell is he's got a hoodie on. >> reporter: a heat signature from the helicopter camera the first glimpse of 22-year-old stephon clark. two officers below close in. >> stop! >> reporter: and here is the moment of contact on the ground. in the dark, an officer yells "gun." >> show me your hands. gun, gun, gun. [ gunshots ] >> reporter: police
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firing 20 shots at clark in his grandparents' backyard finding no weapons, only a cell phone. minutes later one officer says "mute." >> mute. >> reporter: and the two cameras stop recording audio. clark's family wants to know exactly what was said. >> you're muting something you don't want the public to hear what you're saying. and that means that if you don't want the truth to come out, then all of it is a lie. >> reporter: sacramento police chief daniel hahn. when you saw them turn off the audio there in that clip, what did you think? >> just curious why they did that. and so -- but i knew that was part of the investigation. >> reporter: sacramento has been criticized over use of force against black men in the past. police confirming in this shooting one of the officers who opened fire was also black. >> things are heated right now. people are angry and hurting and all those sort of things. i just don't want anybody else to get hurt in our community while we're going through this investigation. >> reporter: but even with transparency, tonight a community's frustration still grows. gadi schwartz, nbc news, sacramento. let's talk now about the
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growing backlash against facebook. ceo mark zuckerberg facing new calls to testify before congress about the data secretly mined from over 50 million facebook users. zuckerberg has expressed his remorse, but tonight many users are saying apology not accepted. nbc news business correspondent jo ling kent has more. >> reporter: facebook stock taking yet another hit. down more than 2%. a backlash brewing after data firm cambridge analytica allegedly accessed the personal information of 50 million unsuspecting facebook users. >> a lot of people are questioning whether they really were paying enough attention to how their platform was used. >> reporter: overnight mark zuckerberg apologizing. >> this was a major breach of trust. and i'm really sorry. >> reporter: but the scandal so far sending the company's value down $46 billion. tech company mozilla yanking advertising saying when facebook takes stronger action in how it shares customer data,
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will consider returning. now pressure from congress after zuckerberg suggested he might not be the best facebook representative to go to washington to testify. >> if that's me, then i'm happy to go. >> reporter: that wasn't good enough for a key senate democrat. >> he is the right person unquestionably and unequivocally. >> reporter: some facebook users have begun cutting ties, using the hash tag #deletefacebook. >> this was the straw that broke my back as far as facebook is concerned. >> reporter: late today facebook coo sheryl sandberg defending the company. >> the most important thing we can do for running this company is protect people's data. >> reporter: the problem for facebook, giving advertisers data about you is critical to how the company makes money. >> facebook was created to do this to people. that's what the platform is for. these tools are being used as designed. >> reporter: zuckerberg says facebook will ban any third party that misuses your data, but inside facebook there's still concern that that's not enough to protect user privacy.
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lester? >> all right, jo ling kent. it has been another day of relentless rain and dramatic water rescues as a powerful pineapple express slams parts of southern california causing flash floods and mud slides. nbc news national correspondent miguel almaguer is in the storm zone for us tonight. >> reporter: tonight as rivers and creeks flood across california, life and death rescues are under way. >> and this person is trapped. >> reporter: a powerful two-day deluge dumping up to an inch of rain an hour. in the saturated muddy and unstable hills across southern california, there are now new evacuations. >> mother nature is not being kind. >> reporter: from san francisco to sacramento, streets are under water, neighborhoods are impassable. rain records have been washed away in parts of los angeles and santa barbara counties. roads are treacherous. a small plane even skidded off a
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runway. near modesto, a dam failure is imminent at moccasin reservoir dam, says the national weather service. though floodwaters should be contained. a powerful atmospheric river is sweeping in from the sea, funneling in a season's worth of rain in just days. are you ready to leave if you have to? >> yes, actually, we are. >> reporter: mark vance is losing ground as mud flows in. >> we're a little scared that something big's going to come down. >> reporter: tonight another blast of dangerous weather and rain is blowing in. threat of more mud slides and flooding comes as rescues play out across the state. while waterways like this are typically dry this time of year, some are filling up fast. while the rain is expected to end later on tonight, those hillside communities could remain vulnerable for a few more days.
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lester? >> all right, miguel, thank you. we are getting a chilling new window this evening into the final days of the las vegas shooter from newly released surveillance footage showing him methodically amassing the arsenal of weapons inside the hotel where he would go on to kill 58 people at a concert outside in the worst mass shooting in modern american history. nbc's joe fryer has more. >> reporter: surveillance images show stephen paddock calmly checking in at the mandalay bay's vip desk. it's monday, september 25th, nearly a week before the shooting. after eating alone at a sushi restaurant, paddock drives his car to valet where a bellman unloads five suitcases. police say paddock stays with the luggage and asks to use the service elevators instead of guest elevators, a request that's not uncommon. later that night he leaves the hotel with two suitcases driving an hour to his home in mesquite. it's a routine that repeats itself. tuesday paddock returns to mandalay bay where a different bellman helps him move seven more suitcases.
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thursday he brings a white container and three more bags and over the weekend two more trips home. in all at least 21 suitcases plus smaller bags are brought to his 32nd floor suite. as paddock gradually amasses 23 guns and thousands of rounds of ammo. >> undiscovered killers who are planning things go about their preparation in a pretty mundane, routine fashion. >> reporter: between the trips home, he is seen playing video poker and chatting with employees. the video was released by mgm resorts which says stephen paddock gave no indication of what he planned to do and his interactions with staff and overall behavior were all normal. a final image shows paddock walking off an elevator sunday nearly ten hours before the massacre. what the footage doesn't explain is why he did it. joe fryer, nbc news. in the wake of mass
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-- tonight a driver is dead after breaching a main gate at an unauthorized area that erupted into flames. steve patterson has the latest. >> reporter: tonight new information on what led to a deadly vehicle crash inside travis air force base sending a ball of fire high above the compound. wednesday evening, investigators say a man was able to slam his car through the base's main gate. the vehicle then crashed, bursting into flames moments later, sending firefighters rushing to the scene. sources say multiple propane tanks were removed from the vehicle. the driver pronounced dead. officials say an investigation is being led by the fbi and may be looked into for any links to terrorism. a statement from the air force released earlier today said in part, "travis air force base first responders are working with federal and local law enforcement agencies to investigate a security incident that occurred at the travis air force base main gate yesterday. the safety and welfare of our airmen, their families, and our
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local community is our top priority." the base is home to more than 7,000 active military personnel. a main hub of operational support along the west coast. officials say no known threats to the base or surrounding community have surfaced. steve patterson, nbc news. now to disturbing new details about the serial bomber who terrorized austin, texas. new surveillance video shows mark conditt buying battery cases just days before the first bombing. and in a confession recorded shortly before his death, the "austin american statesman" reports conditt called himself a psychopath and said he wished he were sorry, but he wasn't. tonight, authorities are also revealing he had a target list of addresses he still intended to hit. still ahead, hidden home danger. the new warning on the alarming rise in the number of children killed in this country by tipped over furniture. also, some good news if you have trouble finding time in your busy day to exercise. we'll tell you about it in a moment. ment. dear foremothers,
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we're back now with a new alert from consumer reports about dangers that may be lurking in your home. furniture that you think is sturdy and safe but could tip in an instant harming you or your children. nbc's kristen dahlgren has the new warning, and it happens far more often than you might think. >> reporter: dangers in plain sight. every 17 minutes somebody in the u.s. is injured by furniture, televisions or appliances tipping over. can you tell by looking at these dressers which ones will be stable? >> that's the thing. we tested 24 different dressers of all shapes and sizes and heights and weights, and unfortunately, you can't tell a dresser by its cover. >> reporter: five years ago kendall just wanted to help his mom stephanie pack. >> one second can change your entire life. >> reporter: the dresser in the bedroom fell on to kendall's head leaving him in a coma for four weeks. >> the same way they put a
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warning sign on a hot beverage. it's the same way they should put a warning sign on a dresser. >> reporter: almost 3,000 children were injured in 2016. >> we encourage you to anchor, anchor, anchor. >> reporter: tethering a solid part of the furniture to the wall can prevent many accidents. as for kendall, now 11, he's had a few physical limitations but he's learned to talk and walk again. >> it's been hard. we did have to work a lot to get as far as we have gone. i'm glad i have my mom. >> reporter: nbc news, yonkers, new york. >> we'll be looking at what's in our home with different eyes. moment of horror caught on camera. an out-of-control tractor-trailer swerving right into the path of an oncoming school bus. day. over the years, paul and i have met regularly with our ameriprise advisor. we plan for everything from retirement to college savings. giving us the ability to add on for an important member of our family.
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absolutely absolutely terrifying moments caught on camera on a school bus in south carolina. take a look.
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a tractor-trailer suddenly crosses the center line and swerves right into the path. the bus driver with no time to avoid a crash. it happened in greenville county where officials say, thankfully, none of the students on the bus was seriously hurt. some eye-opening news about working out. a new study from duke finds even short bursts of exercise can help you live longer. moderate to vigorous activities broken up throughout your day like a brisk walk or taking the stairs can reduce your risk of premature death by 70%. -- by 57%. something to think about. when we come back, the man on a mission to spread joy by randomly leaving kind messages for strangers. words for strang.
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to lift the spirits of strangers with some kind words and some post-it notes. here's kelly cobiella. >> reporter: in the heart of london at subways, bus stops and phone booths, artist andy leek is leaving notes to strangers. >> you can always start again. >> reporter: the dreaded daily commute all around him, andy, who worked in advertising, thought the city could use a little lift. >> if i can get more on message to one person every day, some nice words or some interesting words or funny words, it might make a little bit of a difference throughout the day. >> reporter: writing his positive thoughts like, your best friend was once a stranger. before long strangers were writing back. to this fan favorite, strongly agree. and this one? awesome quote. andy's notes now popping up in paris, amsterdam, even in the alps. and among the palm trees in florida and california. reaching people in unexpected ways. >> thank you.
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one of your notes saved my life. >> reporter: that message from a man who says he was contemplating suicide when he saw this. kindness spreads. >> it's like a nudge towards a more positive mind-set. >> reporter: make all the difference in the world. >> yeah. >> reporter: and it's changed andy's world, too. he's now a full-time artist decorating the city. >> if you do things without an agenda, the universe pays you back in some crazy amazing ways. >> reporter: yet another note to live by. kelly cobiella, nbc news, london. we appreciate you spending part of your evening with us. that is "nightly news" for this thursday night. i'm lester holt. for all of us at nbc news, thank you for watching and good night.
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it is terrible. and it is unsettling. >> now at 6:00, an nbc bay area exclusive. the san jose state student was targeted by a serial assaulter. the news at 6:00 starts right now. thanks for joining us. i'm jessica aguirre. >> and i'm janelle wang sitting in for raj mathai. new revelations in the san jose state university accused of sex ally assaulting male classmates. court documents reveal the suspect displayed the same criminal behavior before each attack. and tonight a student said he saw the signs because the same thing almost happened to him. that student spoke with nbc bay
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area's damian trujillo and live at san jose state with the details. >> reporter: i read through the court documents and i'll tell you, it is quite startling. now that other students tell me they saw the signs four years ago and he regrets not saying anything about it then. hugo walks the campus of san jose state with the memory he's been carrying for four years. he said this man lewis venegas, a school mate and friend asked him if he wanted to perform oral sex on him. >> i was in shock and just kind of -- i was hoping at some point he would say it was a joke and laugh about it. >> it turns out it wasn't a joke. on march 5th campus police arrested venegas charging him with five felonies, including sexual battery and false imprisonment. those documents allege over a owe three-year span on separate occasions his m.o. was the same. he made sexual advances to m

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