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tv   NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt  NBC  August 12, 2019 5:30pm-6:00pm PDT

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the food. >> i'm take care of parking. >> no you are -- >> i get a free ride. >> lester holt is next with "nightly news." >> bye. fbi raiding jeffrey epstein's private island agents on boats swarming the grounds as the mystery over epstein's death deepens. the attorney general says there were serious irregularities at the jail where he was found dead new details about his final moments, left alone in his cell for hours, and questions swirling why he was taken off suicide watch and how will his accusers get justice new charges against the friend of the dayton gunman. the crisis striking thousands in one american city, dangerous levels of lead found in the drinking water, parents fearing for their childrens' safety >> i'm concerned that his brain might not be able to think past a certain point.
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>> what officials knew and when and why they're under fire tonight. the toxic invasion proving fatal for dogs, where you should not let your best friend play this summer. shocking discovery, a plane passenger finding a hidden camera in the first class bathroom how authorities figured out who they say left it there the stunning performance having many asking is simone biles the greatest of all time >> announcer: this is "nbc nightly news" with lester holt. good evening everyone, serious irregularities that's how u.s. attorney general william barr is first public comments describing the circumstances behind the death of accused sex trafficker jeffrey epstein. epstein died of apparent suicide on saturday in a federal lock up we have new information about his final hours, also late word the fbi is searching his caribbean estate stephanie gosk is joining us you went to that estate at one point. what do we know? >> we know the fbi showed up on boats about 10:30 in the morning, a team searching his
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island even though jeffrey epstein is dead and the trial will never happen, it's an unmistakable message from the department of justice this isn't over. >> reporter: today, unexpected guests showed up on jeffrey epstein's private caribbean island a team of fbi agents raided the luxury compound by the attorney general vowed not to let up on the investigation. >> let me assure you that this case will continue on against anyone who was complicit with epstein. >> reporter: barr also fiercely criticized the federal jail where epstein was being held >> we are now learning of serious irregularities at this facility that are deeply concerning >> reporter: the 66-year-old was discovered close to death early saturday morning according to an administration official familiar with the facts, epstein had not been checked on for a number of hours. a violation of protocol which requires checks roughly every half hour.
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today, the prison union telling nbc news the jail is understaffed, officers are overworked on july 23rd, epstein was put on suicide watch after being found injured with marks around his neck, triggering 24/7 monitoring according to multiple law enforcement sources. but on or about july 29th, the suicide watch was dropped. a person familiar with the case tells nbc news on august 9th, the day before his death, epstein's cell mate was released and not replaced, another apparent violation of protocol that same day, epstein's attorneys visited the facility, arguing that their client was mentally stable and should be moved to a less restrictive unit epstein wasn't moved he hanged himself the next morning according to multiple law enforcement sources, making the decision to drop the suicide watch one of many questions in the investigation. >> quite hard to keep someone alive if they're really intent on killing themselves.
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that's why whatever that watch status is becomes very important. >> reporter: epstein may have slid past the experts, but investigators are still determined the story of his alleged crimes gets told stephanie gosk, nbc news, new york >> reporter: i'm miguel almaguer the criminal case against jeffrey epstein never named another defendant, but hours before his death, new court documents revealed the stunning allegation that the financier and a former member of his inner circle maxwell ordered a teenage girl to have sex with powerful men. >> it started with one and trickled into two and so on and so forth >> reporter: virginia roberts dupree claimed maxwell recruited and groomed her as a sex slave for the rich and famous, including epstein. >> that is what we, the people, want >> reporter: seen here at the un, maxwell who denied wrong doing and settled out of court
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settled out of court with roberts dupree today the attorney general said any possible accomplice is under investigation. >> any coconspirators should not rest easy. the victims deserve justice, and they will get it >> reporter: and epstein's accusers are filing a barrage of civil lawsuits with vast estates in florida, new mexico, new york, and the virgin islands epstein was said to be worth at least $559 million michelle says she is a victim. >> money will never make the pain go away, and it will just live on with me forever. >> reporter: tonight, jeffrey epstein may be dead, but his accusers still want their day in court. miguel almaguer, nbc news. >> in the wake of epstein's death it didn't take long for people to spread wild conspiracy theories on social media, among them, president trump, who has a long history of fuelling unfounded conspiracy claims. we get more from nbc's andrea
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mitchell >> reporter: within hours of jeffrey epstein's apparent suicide, president trump was retweeting a conspiracy theory linking bill clinton to his death. it was immediately picked up by russian state media going viral. a clinton spokesperson calling the tweet ridiculous and not true, but a top trump adviser defending him. >> i think the president just wants everything to be investigated >> reporter: for the president, seizing on a conspiracy theory is part of a pattern he launched his political career with a false birther claim against president obama. >> he may not have been born in this country >> reporter: in 2016 there was a bizarre claim that ted cruz's father had been involved in the kennedy assassination. >> there was a picture of him and crazy lee harvey oswald having breakfast ection the false charge that millions in california have voted illegally for hillary clinton. >> the same person votes many times. you probably heard of that >> reporter: other examples, that justice scalia may have been murdered, that vaccines cause autism, and thousands may
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have been killed in new jersey on 9/11. >> certainly to accuse even by implication a predecessor of a murder conspiracy puts us in a whole different realm of reality. >> clinton and trump had both known epstein and trump critics countered by blaming mr. trump online for epstein's death marco rubio chided both sides for spreading conspiracy but no one did it with as big a megaphone as the president there's breaking news tonight in the investigation of the mass shooting attack in dayton, ohio a friend of the gunman is facing federal charges. our justice correspondent pete williams is in washington with the details. >> reporter: lester, federal prosecutors say this friend did not know that the gunman was planning a mass shooting the friend, 24-year-old ethan collie of suburban dayton is
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charged with lying about drug use when he bought a hand gun of his own in may but investigators say he told them he bought part of the assault style rifle, the 100 round magazine, and the body armor the gunman used in the shooting attack that killed nine people in this new detail, collie told the fbi he and the attacker used marijuana and lsd four or five times a week in 2014 and 2015. they say collie told the agents he kept all this in his apartment so the parents wouldn't know before it was retrieved six or eight weeks ago. there's growing outrage tonight in new jersey's largest city lead found in the drinking water has thousands of newark residents lining up for bottled water and worrying about the long-term effects on their children ron allen is there >> reporter: worried and angry about lead contamination, residents of newark, new jersey are demanding bottled water and answers. >> if you know the water is
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going to be messed up all this time, why wasn't we told >> reporter: the city giving water to some residents today after the environmental protection agency warned friday night it could not assure their health is fully protected. new tests revealing water filters issued by the city last year amid elevated lead levels may not be reliably effective. >> i'm upset i'm angry. >> reporter: this woman says her son age five tested positive for lead >> i'm concerned his brain might not be able to think past a certain point. >> reporter: while she admits she can't prove a connection, experts say no level of lead in water is safe. the issue exploding in 2016 when lead was discovered in the water in 30 school buildings >> the water in newark is safe and drinkable. >> reporter: residents were skeptical then, some drawing comparisons to the crisis in flint, michigan. late today the city said testing will continue, and out of abundance of caution, the city is notifying residents na some
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filters may not be working as expected the mayor is urging residents to let their water run for five minutes before using it. evette jordan says her home tested three times the federal limit for lead she leads a group of residents suing the city >> as an educator, parent, wife, resident of newark, i'm extremely upset. >> reporter: tonight residents of an american city worried about what's in the water. tonight city officials insist the tests show the lead problem is not that widespread, it's unclear how much longer the residents of this largely african-american city will need bottled water. there's breaking news this evening on immigration the trump administration is now imposing new rules on immigrants here legally nbc's kristen welker is at the president's resort in new jersey where he is vacationing. kristen, there's also some backlash to this move tonight. tell us about it >> reporter: lester, that's right. that backlash is coming after
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the acting director of citizenship and immigration service announced that controversial immigration rule that legal immigrants who rely on public benefits like medicaid, food stamps, or housing assistance could have a tougher time obtaining a green card or u.s. citizenship. the trump administration sees it as a way to bring in more highly skilled and wealthy immigrants to the u.s the citizenship chief said it's about ensuring the immigrants who are here are able to support themselves and to become successful in america. opponents to the new rule say it's punishing the poor and stoking fear in immigrant communities. >> kristen welker traveling with the president. thanks to the growing mysteryect ia nuclear powered weapon and president trump weighing in this evening about it. bill neely has late details. >> reporter: buried today, five nuclear scientists, described as
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the elite of russia's nuclear test site, killed with others while a small nuclear reactor exploded they were testing an engine, a weapon president putin boasted about last year, capable of outsmarting american defenses. russian officials say radiation levels spiked to 20 times normal levels people in nearby cities stocked up on iodine to reduce the effects of radiation president trump tweeting tonight the u.s. is learning much from the failed missile explosion which has people worried about the air there and far beyond initially, though, moscow has denied a leak as it did covering up the chernobyl blast 35 years ago. the world's worst nuclear accident this blast last week isn't on the same scale, but moscow can't hide an embarrassing set back to a weapon russia sees as critical
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in its new arms race with the u.s. one american nuclear scientist told me tonight this new cruise missile might never work u.s. intelligence officials now analyzing it's not likely and that the radiation leak is over. lester >> bill, thank you next tonight the chaos that has crippled a major international travel hub hundreds of pro-democracy protesters flooding hong kong's airport forcing over 150 flights to be cancelled. the crowds were angry after police earlier shot tear gas and rubber bullets injuring protesters at another location chinese officials have blasted the protest as, quote, the first signs of terrorism a new development, in a story we have been following the family of a teen while trapped in a minivan while calling 911 twice is suing alleging his desperate calls for help were mishandled we get more from nbc's joe fryer. >> reporter: 16 months after
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kyle plush died when he became trapped in his minivan, his family is filing a wrongful death lawsuit against the city of cincinnati. >> it's still hard to believe that this happened it's hard to believe that this is our lives >> reporter: when 16-year-old kyle was pinned down by the van's third row seat, he used voice commands to twice all 911 on the cell phone in his pocket. >> i'm stuck in my van outside the seven hills hotel parking lot. >> reporter: the family's lawsuit alleges the dispatcher failed to share details of the location police were sent instead of fire and rescue the city says the responding officers searched the parking lot but never left their car >> they were deliberately indifferent to kyle's safety, and the officers knew that he was at risk. >> reporter: investigations by the city exonerated the call takers and officers today the police union said the officers involved did not receive sufficient information
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to surmise a life was in danger. the city says it can't comment on the lawsuit b that it hasngem the plush family says more needs to be done >> this is a life and death situation. you know, we're playing with peoples' lives >> reporter: kyle's mom still has not listened to her son's final 911 call >> i probably don't have much time left. just tell my mom that i love her if i die this is not a joke >> reporter: his parents hope what happened to kyle never happens again. joe fryer, nbc news. the trump administration moved to make the most sweeping changes in decades to how the endangered species act is enforced the over hall would weaken a number of protections and allow the government to consider the pricetag for saving a species which some critics say could allow more drilling in their habitats democrats and conservationists
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vowing to fight it in court. we've got a lot more to tell you about tonight, including the new warning that everyone with a dog should hear, the growing danger in the water this summer. some families say they didn't know about it until it was too late also the camera found hidden in the bathroom on a united airlines flight, how police say they found the passenger accused of putting it there. and simone biles making history again. hope you'll stay with us
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all right. we're back now with that warning for dog owners about a potentially lethal danger lurking in the water in many places this summer kerry sanders have the alert >> reporter: in the summer heat, nothing more inviting than refreshing lake water. but in texas, georgia, tennessee, and north carolina, multiple reports from dog owners that their pets died after coming into contact wi
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minutes after being in the water, her best friend was dying. >> she was struggling to breathe. so, we take her to the vet ten minutes after we got there, they told me that your baby is not doing good we have to give her cpr, and she died shortly after that. >> reporter: some owners believe their dogs died after licking their fur which had been soaked with the toxins of that blue-green algae the problem is more acute in the south in summer because algae blooms in the heat are more common in some cases the warnings come as word of mouth >> this lady is like don't put your dogs in the water they're passing away i'm like wait, what? >> reporter: veterinarians say they're helpless doc, is there an anecdote? ithe south a warning, your dog's dip the le might be deadly. kerry sanders, nbc news. >> quite troubling we're back in a moment with that camera found hidden in the bathroom of united airlines flight who authorities say put it there.
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we're back now to tell you about the shocking discovery on board a plane. a hidden camera found inside a plane's bathroom by a passenger. morgan chesky explains how police were able to identify the man they think placed it there >> reporter: it was the spring trip that took a scary turn at more than 30,000 feet when a woman on board a united airlines flight from san diego to houston headed to the first class bathroom in court documents she described seeing an item with a blue blinking light hanging near the cabinet and wall area close to a door hinge she thought it was odd, so she gave it to the flight crew authorities later confirmed the device was a hidden camera that been used before, capturing two other women on an emirates ig footage never showed the suspect's face they turned to airport surveillance to zero in on what they could see a blue shirt, jeans, and black tennis shoes they matched more on board he's identified as choon ping lee. lee's public defender declined
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to comment tonight he remains in custody facing up to a year in prison if convicted. morgan chesky, nbc news. all right. we'll take a break you think you've seen it all think again. the greatest of all time makes history again.
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welcome to san francisco, alex rodriguez, the half million dollar less son. >> and the mayor of the -- lesson. >> and the mayor has had it with slow movement on gun control, ht of its kind next. simone biles making history three times over here's blaine alexander. >> reporter: it happened so fast it left all of us doing a triple
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double take. >> money >> reporter: three twists, two flips, and for simone biles, one epic tumble into gymnastics history. but make history once, that's too easy on the beam, a double double dismount, never done before. but biles nailed it. >> nobody in the world can do this nobody >> reporter: after a rare fall during prelims, she bounced back clinching her sixth u.s. all around title >> each one gets better and better because it's like the fifth and then the sixth so, it just keeps getting more exciting >> reporter: she's already pioneered two moves, both coined the biles. so, if she nails this again at the world championships in october, it becomes the biold medals on. someone give this girl a crown >> reporter: and just in case you need a reminder. check out the back of her reminder a goat the greatest gymnast of all time blaine alexander, nbc news
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>> can't wait to see what she'll do at the olympics next year that's "nightly news" for this monday i'm lester holt. from all of us at nbc news, thank you for watching and good night. right now at 6:00, a thief bloke into a car and made off with a half million bucks in jewelry and electronics. the a list celebrity learning the hard way about the streets of san francisco. the first of its kind in the country, the move san francisco hopes will make gun owners more responsible. is it the sign of a cooling housing market, the new numbers on bidding wars here in the bay area. the news at six starts right now, good evening and thanks for being with us on this monday. i'm raj mathai. >> and ihomes are taking longer
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sell, nbc bay area marianne favro is in mountain view with these trends. what are you seeing? >> reporter: here's a perfect example of the changes in the housing market recently, you can see here in mountain view the sale is pending, this house was on the market 70 days. and real estate agents say that's something you wouldn't have seen last summer. >> the realtor for this newly remodeled home is expecting multiple offers later this week. agents say bidding wars are not nearly as common as last year, a new report by real estate brokerage red pin confirms that. a whopping

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