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tv   NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt  NBC  May 18, 2018 5:30pm-6:01pm PDT

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right? >> yes. it'll be in the 50s. >> lester holt joins us next anchoring coverage from "nightly news" in texas. tonight, from santa fe, texas, it has happened again. another massacre at an american high school. >> he's actively shooting. he's in the art room. >> at least ten people are dead including nine students and a teacher. ten more are injured. some in critical condition after police say a student opened fire. >> i was scared for my life. nobody should go through this. nobody should be able to feel that in school. >> tonight, just three months after the massacre in florida that spurred a nationwide call to action, another community, a school that stood with parkland joins a tragic epidemic. >> also tonight, a horrific air disaster, over 100 dead and three survivors clinging to life as a passenger jet goes down
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moments after take off. major health news, a game-changing new medicine approved by the fda, new help for millions who suffer from migraines. and here comes the bride, hours from a royal wedding bonanza and american invasion tonight in windsor. is your alarm set? >> announcer: this is "nbc nightly news" with lester holt. good evening, welcome to our viewers in the west. we are from santa fe, texas about 30 miles southeast from houston and sadly, the latest american community left shattered by a deadly school shooting. this time it happened in the high school a short distance behind me. the scenes too familiar, students running out with their hands up, parents frantically trying to reach their kids. reminiscing of what we witnessed three months ago in park land, florida that sparked a nationwide movement. before that the massacre in newtown, connecticut. so many school shootings in between back to columbine in 1999.
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and even before. each time we stop and ask what can be done and time passes and then comes a day like today another senseless tragedy and a lot of questions to night about what happened here and the motive of the suspected gunman. we begin with nbc's gabe gutierrez in the moments of terror at santa fe high. >> reporter: it was sheer panic yet again. >> nobody should have to go through this. nobody should feel that pain. it hurts my heart to see this. >> reporter: horrified students fearing for their lives, desperate parents scrambling for answers. >> she called me and said mom, there is shots and i said what? she said there are shots in the school and she was crying. i turned around and just hauled it all the way to the school. >> reporter: the gunfire at santa fe high school began just before 8:00 this morning. >> we have several shots fired. >> reporter: students say they heard a fire alarm then shots. >> he's actively shooting. he's in the art room.
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we've got shots fired right now, guys. >> all the teachers said run, go, go, that's what we did. >> 30 minutes of a state of panic. nobody knew what was going on. >> i don't know. i was scared. i was pretty shaken. >> reporter: dustin says the suspected shooter is a student who had been picked on before. >> he doesn't talk to many. he keeps to himself and wears a trench coat every day and it's 90 degrees out here. >> reporter: law enforcement sources identified the suspect as 17-year-old dimitrios pagourtzis. investigators say his journal suggested he planned to kill himself but authorities arrested him before he took his own life. >> he gave himself up and admitted at the time he didn't have the courage to commit the suicide that he wanted to take his own life. >> reporter: as police evacuated the school, another terrifying discovery.
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>> there have been explosive devices found in the high school and surrounding areas adjacent to the high school. >> reporter: susana salazar distraught. >> my sister was in the classroom. that's why i am so worried right now. moments later, devastating news. >> you guys, we have got to go to the hospital. >> oh my god. [crying] >> come on, let's go. >> over here! >> oh, my god. >> reporter: this community is heart broken. among the wounded. a school resource officer. we are told he is in critical but stable condition. according to chilling court documents. the suspect told police he didn't shoot students he liked. because he wanted his story told. lester. all right. gabe gutierrez with us here in texas. we're joined by presley and her mom wendy. thank you for joining us. horrific day, presley. you heard the alarm go all. the shots. you have a decision to make. do you run, do you hide. explain what you did? >> the fire alarm was pulled.
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we didn't run. i thought it was a fire alarm. i left my belongings in the school and walked out like normal. i saw a couple kids take off and we started getting pushed back further and teachers are telling us to run, run so we're running across street to indian automotive where they safely tucked us away. >> you've seen this. we mentioned at the top of the broadcast, we've seen it before. what is it like to live it? are these images of other places going through your mind? >> i never really thought it would happen to me or my school. i mean, it's pretty traumatic. you -- that's not something when you wake up in the morning, oh, you're going to have a great day at school and plus, it's friday and then you don't think that you're going to have somebody shoot up the school. >> you know, i think of your trama and the trama of your classmates and wendy, as a parent, when did you find out and how did you get here? >> i was headed into town about 7:30 this morning and i was
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passing by nine different cops, no ambulances, no fire trucks and then before i could even get turned around i was thinking okay, something is not right in this small town, it usually comes with ambulances and things like that. so by the time i got turned around, there was more headed that way and we had to get to the side of the road and by the time i made it to the school, there was like 25, 30 cop cars. >> you didn't have time to call your mom? >> no, i left my phone in the school. >> tell me about being reunited. >> it was amazing. it was heart wrenching. very emotional because all i wanted to do was hug her, hold her tight and not let her go. i'm just really thankful that she's okay but my heart is broken for those that aren't and for those parents who are experiencing this. >> bless both of you. thank you so much for taking the time to talk to us. appreciate it. as we said, there are a lot of questions about the suspected gunman. a 17-year-old student and unlike
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past school shooting suspects, this one seems to have given off no major warning signs. we get details from our justice correspondent pete williams. >> reporter: police and federal agents searched the house where dimitrios pagourtzis lived and found low-level explosive devices in his house and car and none of the pipe bombs went off. officials say he wrote in journals, a computer and a cell phone about wanting to shoot up the school and commit suicide though he surrenders after exchanging gunfire with first responders and is cooperating with investigators. so far, they say no obvious motive. he had no prior brushes with the law. teachers say he did not turn in disturbing homework. >> there were not those type of warning signs. we have what are often categorized as red flag warnings and here, the red flag warnings were either nonexistent of none perceptible. >> reporter: his only apparent
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violence related expression was this t-shirt that showed born to kill posted on social media on april 30th but had a long dark code and wore it today to conceal weapons and copied many of the details of the shooting at colorado's columbine high school in 1999. >> it seems like this guy was emulating the columbine killers. what so many of the people do. they study each other and like using the theatrics to echo. >> reporter: what led to the obsession is a mystery. he played football and seemed to fit in but recently has been complaining that he had been bullied. late today, the suspect appeared briefly in court to face the charges. ten counts of capital murder. he spoke little answering yes to whether he wanted a court appointed lawyer. lester. >> all right. pete williams, thank you. the massacre here in texas marks the 16th school shooting in the u.s. this year. this was also the deadliest since 17 people were killed in the high school shooting in
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parkland, florida in february. today several of the survivors from parkland expressed their grief and condolences for the victims here but also their outrage that this is happening all over again. nbc's kerry sanders has more. >> reporter: at first glance, these tragedies look the same and for students in florida at parkland's high school, that's the problem. >> i was just mad more than i was sad that something like this could happen again. >> reporter: they know all too well how this crisis is unfolding in texas where frightened parents and students said today's shooting reflects a new reality. >> it's been happening everywhere. i felt -- i've always felt like it would happen here, too. >> it's one of our fears as parents to send our kids to school nowadays and not know they are safe. >> reporter: the similarities
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are hard to miss. 17 died here in parkland, florida this february. andy's daughter meadow among the victims and today, he's not surprised something like this has happened again. >> the feeling today is that i feel helpless. >> reporter: you're angry? >> of course i'm angry. there is ten dead kids and parents that have to deal with it like i have to deal with it. i don't want to see parents like the way i feel. i don't want to see anybody feel the way i feel. >> reporter: park land students tweeting today we are fighting for you and we will be there to support you. that shooting ignited a movement, massive protests calling for an end to gun violence. students across the country staged walkouts, demanding politicians restrict access to certain firearms. >> we're strong and we need to make a change so we're not going to stop until it happens. >> reporter: the students from today's high school shooting in texas joined those walkouts, too, making signs, #never again in solidarity with the parkland
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survivors unaware they would be sharing the raw main of a school shooting 93 days later. kerry sanders, nbc news, parkland, florida. in washington president trump is responding to the latest incident again promising action to prevent school shootings, something we've heard from lawmakers including the president before. our white house correspondent peter alexander is in washington. peter, after the initial shock we look to washington. people want answers and solutions, what are you hearing from there? >> president trump ordered flags to fly at half staff. to honor the victims in texas. he addressed the situation, saying not looking good and mass shootings have been going on too long. he called this a very sad day, a horrific attack and delivered this message to the santa fe high school community. >> we're with you in this tragic hour and we will be with you forever. my administration is determined to do everything in our power to protect our students, secure our
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schools and to keep weapons out of the hands of those who pose a threat to themselves and to others. >> following the parkland shooting, the president invited victims and families to the white house and set up a federal commission on school safety and initially said he would take the heat from the nra to raise the age limit to buy guns, but so far no action on that promise and at their conference, the president publicly embraced the nra. the first lady tweeted her condolences, as well. her office says that she is still recovering at walter reid where she's been hospitalized since a kidney procedure on monday. the president indicated she would be back here at the white house by the end of the week. lester? >> all right. peter alexander, thank you. on this busy friday, we're also covering a deadly plane disaster in cuba. cubanan airlines, boeing 747,
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with more than 100 people including five children on board crashed shortly after take off from havana's airport. state media reports three people survived the crash and were pulled alive from the wreckage. they are in critical condition. the u.s. state department working to determine whether american citizens were on board that plane. let's take a turn now to the new hope for the tens of millions of americans who suffer from migraines. the fda approved a breakthrough drug to stop migraines before they start. nbc news medical correspondent dr. john torres has the story. >> reporter: 16-year-old's lisa's migraines started when she was a freshman. >> it's all over pain, not just your head. >> reporter: she tried dozens of medications and nothing could stop the more than 15 migraines she would have every month. 39 million americans suffer from migraines but now a major breakthrough. the fda approving the first
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medication in a new class of drugs to prevent migraines. >> it is targeting one of the causes of the disease rather than just being something invented for something else found useful for migraine. >> reporter: it blocks a molecule called cgrp that in high levels can cause the body to have more pain. monthly injections of the new drug cut the number of migraines in half for 50% of patients taking it. >> that could be life-changing. >> for someone having migraines, 50% fewer can make a huge different in their quality of life. >> reporter: it was for lisa. >> makes life easier. >> reporter: the drug will cost $6900 a year but may be covered by insurance. it should be widely available next week. still ahead, countdown to the royal wedding, how harry and meghan are spending their last few hours before the event millions plan to watch around the world. also, fire balls and toxic gas, the growing double threat from hawaii's volcano emergency. we'll be right back.
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well, on a much happier note, the wait is almost over. the much anticipated royal wedding between prince harry and meghan markle hours away. today the groom and best man prince william greeted admirers as we learned who will walk meghan down the isle. >> reporter: tonight, meghan markle with her mom, her last night before becoming royalty after introducing doria ragland to the queen. meghan's extraordinary journey from american actress to her royal highness in the last 24 hours driving to windsor with prince harry. they won't be together again until tomorrow. the palace announcing today prince charles will lead meghan down the aisle. this afternoon, no sign of
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nerves from his soon to be married son. >> reporter: his brother and best man, prince william. in a few hours, meghan markle will become his american princess. the princes greeting well wishers who had been here for hours. many from the u.s. >> we said congratulations and so sincere when he said thank you. you know. it was, harry bumps actually what he gave me. >> reporter: harry telling others he can't wait. william joking he's looking for a babysitter this weekend. >> how are you feeling? >> great. thank you. how are you feeling? >> reporter: tomorrow will be a far more intimate wedding than harry's parents charles and dianna when 3500 guests attended. all william and kate's more formal affair in westminster abbey. the unprecedented service with an archbishop from england and a bishop from the u.s. >> well to be sure. the church of england is the mother church, so it is always to be good in mama's house. [ laughter ] >> i can't believe you just said that. >> reporter:
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tomorrow's pomp and ceremony may feel more like a party than past royal nuptials but this is a royal wedding like no other before. the full guest list is still a mystery tonight. almost every british royal, diana's family and many of meghan's friends are expected and big stars, george clooney, serena williams, elton john. it will be quite a day, lester? >> lots of excitement there. keir simmons, thank you. coming up, with graduation season in full swing, some good news for grads hitting the job market. we will tell you about it when we come back.
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it's the story of our nation. john chiang's father came here with little money, but big dreams for a better future. now john has a chance to make history. a champion of the underdog, john took on wells fargo when it ripped off working families. and against the odds, he helped saved california from financial disaster during the great recession. ...leaving more to invest in progressive priorities like education, healthcare and affordable housing. john chiang. the proven, progressive leader we need for california's future. in hawaii a double threat tonight after that volcanic eruption. a surge in strength for many of those fissures that sent lava in the air and growing concerns over air quality on the big island. with sulfur dioxide coming out of the ground and the ash and
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soot slowly raining down. a florida man is under arrest after a shootout with police at a miami area golf resort owned by president trump. he entered the lobby of the trump national doral resort overnight, threw an american flag on a counter and began ranting against the president and allegedly fired shots into the ceiling and waited for police to arrive for an ambush-type attack. in the chaos, the suspect was wounded and one officer suffered a broken wrist. a new graduate says your parents may thought of telling you now that you got the diploma, time for the job. the pay for 20 and under entering the work force soared 5%. it's a great time to start your job search. when we come back, a princess of our own. american super fans flocking overseas for tomorrow's royal wedding. accused of driving while
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stoned... in the deadly crash on 880. why the da tells us he )s about to walk out of jail. plus, outrage over the texas
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school massacre. the statement hundreds of students will make in the bay area . >> the suspect is about to walk out of jail. >> outrage over the texas school massacre. out of jail. >> outrage over the texas school massacre. event as we noted, millions will be watching here in the u.s. as prince harry and meghan markle tie the knot in england but seeing it on a tv scene just doesn't good enough. here is nbc's kelly cobiella. >> reporter: tonight, an american invasion. >> new york. >> tennessee. >> georgia. >> reporter: all here to see the california girl marry her prince. >> you went all out. >> we did. we wanted to have fun and represent america and england. ♪ god save the queen >> reporter: chris barns from seattle was making plans the minute she heard harry was engaged, a royal fan for
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decades. she's met the queen, and saw fergie and andrew and kate and william tie the knot. >> it's hard work. you have to have patience. you have to have an empty bladder. >> reporter: this time, three generations with four festive hats traveled nearly 5,000 miles. you've made it. you're here. how does it feel? >> it feels wonderful. i'm ready for a royal wedding. >> reporter: but first, scouting out the perfect spot all for one brief moment. a glimpse through the crowds of the bride and groom. >> i want them to come through those gates and then i want them to look at me and wave and smile. >> reporter: their fairy tale ending. we invite you to join us for complete royal wedding coverage tomorrow with a special edition of "today" starting at 4:30 a.m. eastern time. we appreciate you spending part of your evening with us. our thoughts certainly with the folks here in santa fe, texas after today's school tragedy.
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that is "nightly news" for this friday from texas. i'm lester holt, good night and thanks for watching. now: good evening and thanks for joining us. i )m raj mathai. and i )m jessica aguirre. it ) the news at 6:00 starts now. thanks for being with us on this friday. i'm raj mathai. >> i'm jessica aguirre. it happened again, another mass school shooting. fear, confusion, heartbreak after gunfire erupts inside a texas high school, this time at santa fe high, an hour southeast of houston. police say the gunman, dimitrios pagourtzsis, brought his father's shotgun and revolver to school and started shooting. when it was over, at least ten people were dead and ten others wounded. investigators say the 17-year old also planted pipe bombs on campus and one at home. in the wake of this blood shed,
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the texas governor, greg abbott, insists he is now committing to finding a solution to this ongoi ongoing gun violence. >> these include things like speeding background checks and include strategies to keep guns out of the hands much those who pose an immediate danger to others. >> investigators say that the shooter had been complaining about being bullied in school and he wrote about his attack in journals, his computer and even his cellphone, saying he would kill himself after the shooting. he didn't. instead, he surrendered. tonight he's in jail on bond charged with capital murder. >> sadly, this is all a familiar script, a shooting leads to frustration which then leads to activism. tonight bay area high school students are making their voices heard. nbc's sam brock joins us at city hall in san francisco. sam. >> reporter: raj, speaking of that cycle, you're right. frustration the perfect word. students telling me tonight they


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