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tv   NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt  NBC  March 15, 2019 7:00pm-7:30pm EDT

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> breaking news tonight. terr in new zealand. 49 people killed in a shooting massacre at two mosques.iv the gunmantreaming the horror on facebook. police capturing him in a dramatic takedown. the community in disbelief. >> we're so kind a loving. so i just don't understand why someone would hurt us like this in such a wa >> the suspect's apparent manifesto filled with racist rants. president trump mentioned by name in those writings says he doesn't see white nationalism as a rising threat. >> i don't really. i think it's a small group of people. >> onight security stepped up at mosques here at home. president trump uses his first-ever veto after a dozen li senate repubns joined democrats to revolt against hism ergency over the border.
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the damaged black boxes from the ethiopian airlines crash now being analyzed in france. at the pilots' urgent communications reveal about the plane's final moments. rth korea's new nuclear threat. weeks after president trump's summit with kim jong-un fell apart. actress fecity huffman back in court with husband william h. macy in that massive college cheating scam. the new fallout tonight. heart health warning. what you need to know before xt your family'reakfast. inside a major american city's awe-inspiring new landmark. good evening, everyone. almost 7,000 miles from the u.s. mainland, the city of christchurch, new zealand, is unspeakable horror tonight. the brazen murders of at least 49 people, men, women and children shot down during friday prayers at two mosques. a nearly equal number left injured.
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the attack allegedly carried out by a man described as a white supremacist who livestreamed his rampage on facebook. tonight he is under arrest as authorities study an anti-muslim manifesto in which he decried what he called invaders. our richard engel starts our coverage. >> reporter: it was no accidentz that nland's deadliest terrorist attack began around 1:45 in the afternoon.nm a gu storming the al noor mosque when it was packed with hundreds of muslims performing friday afternoon prayers. an>> i could hear screamin crying. i saw some people drop dead. ay>> reporter: witnesses she attacker came in through the front door wearing all black. police say he had at least two d assault rifles shotgun. >> i saw in the mainon the right-hand side, there were 20-plus people. some of them were dead, some of them were screaming. >> reporter: one survivor ge
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mato escape, his shirt covered in blood. >> the blood is spilling on me, i mean, splashing on me. i think, oh my god, oh my god, ow's going to happen to me. >> reporter: witnesses describing the killer. >> was wearing a helmet, black helmet, with a big machine gun. >> reporter: on that helmet the gunman had a camera. r this image taken in his he arrived at the mosque. he livestreamed 17 horric minutes as he sprayed bullets into men, women, and children, stalking from room to room, stopping only to reload. he then got into his car, driving three miles away to launch another deadly rampage at a second mosque. later police rammed his vehicle, where they found explosive devices. that's the suspect being taken into custody. two u.s. intelligence sources tell nbc news the suspect is 28-year-old brenton tarrant, a toite supremacist who posted an apparent manifes of
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anti-immigrant, anti-muslim ci conspi. >> this is one of new zealand's darkest days. reporter: just 5 millio people live in new zealand, where many police officers don't evenarry weapons. >> many of those who will have been directly affected by e shooting may be migrants to new zealand. they may even be refugees here. they are us. the person who has perpetuated this violence against us is not. >> reporter: tonight one suspect is under arrest, charged with murder. police say two others were takes intody. their suspected roles in the attack unclear.ed australian say brenton tarrant grew up in grafton, australia, worked as a personal traine and traveled throughout asia and europe. police describe the gunman as a fanatic who meticulously plaed every detail. >> this is a very well planned event. le >> reporter: wonight dozens of victims are being remembered. >> we're such a small community.
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we're so kind and loving.i st don't understand why someone would hurt us like this, in such a y, just like an animal. >> reporter: chrtchurch's mayor saying, our city has changed forever. >> richard joins us now. we're also learning about incredible bravery by those iv sus. what can you tell us? >> so as horrible as this attack was, it could have been even t rse. a witness says t this gunman was going room to room, shooting people down, a yog man approached him, tackled him, wrestled a gun fm him, chased him all the way to his car lfore he was arrested. but it was still te for so many people. >> all right, richard engel, thank you. our miguel almaguer has made hia way to newnd. he's on the ground at the scene in christchurch for us tonight.l miyou're at the hospital where we're also learning about some of the victims tonight. what can you tell us there >> reporter: lester, good evening. b we're just a fcks away from where one of the shootings took place. it is a grim scene at the hospital behind me.
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i can tel you doctors described wh they saw as a war zone. they treated more than 40 tients. some have only minor injuries but many have serious injuries including two people tonight who remain in critical condition. eaere have been more than a dozen operations a and there will be certainly more surgeries in the days ahead for ma of these victims. doctors say they were overwhelmed by the sheer volume of the carnage that they saw. many of the injured came here in ambulance, others, the walking wounded, drove themselves.th victims are children, one as young as 4 years old, their parents and the elde many are still suffering fm gunshot wounds. i can also tel youhere, lester, that many families are clinging to hope. hundreds are waiting for word outside the hospital as richard mentioned, many officers are not armed but here they are heavily armed as a precaution. lester, more people were killed in this single attack than are murdered in this country during a regular year, lester. whole thing just
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devastating. miguel almaguer in christchurch. thank yo back home at the white house late today, president trump, who was mentioned in that gunman's apparent manifesto, said he does not see white nationalism as a rising global threat. but as our pete williams doreports, security expertn't agree. >> reporter: police tonight arer stepping up s around mosques nationwide, from new york to los angeles. no known threat here, they say,y stri precaution. >> our message to them is one of, we are here with you. reporter: but terrorism experts say today's attack in new zealand shows that white extremm has become a global threat. >> we've seen white supremacists move from the margins to the mainstreams. and cleverly use social media and other forms of technology to spread across borders. >> reporter: adl says right-wing exemism caused 50 deaths i the u.s. last year, including the october shooting at a pittsburgh synagogue. authorits in new zealand say the gunman there drew fr inspiration om other white nationalists, especially anders
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hring breivik, who killed 77 in a gun and bomb attack in norway eight years ago. last month the fbi arrested a coast guard officer in marylando accusing hamassing weapons and plotting attacks on members of congress. also inspired by breivik, prosecutors say. security experts say a common thread of white nationalism is fierce opposition to immigra invasion.ng it in a document the new zealand attacker appears to have posted line, he said he preside president trump quote a symbol of renewed white identity, cal of he was also cri the president. the president today condemned the attack. t' >> i this a horrible, disgraceful thing and a horrible act. >> do you see today white nationalism as a rising threat around the world? >> i don't really. i think it's a small group of people that have very, very serious problems. >> reporter: ali sufan, a formeb tocounter terror agent who investigated the 9/11 attacks, says right-wing extrem not getting enough attention from police or u.s. intelligence. w
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need to deal with the domestic terrorism threat as a national priority. so far it's not. we don't have, for example, he congressional ings about these kind of things. it's not part of any national strategy. >> reporter: security experts say this form of terrorism is anti-islamic, anti-semitic, anti-immigrant. they say the common theme for violent white extremists is hate for people who are different. wster? >> all right, peliams, thank you. this attack is just the latest act of violence to be livestreamed on social media. it's raising new questions about how tech giants manage disturng content that could inspire copycats. let's get more on that angle fr nbc's gabe gutierrez. >> reporter: this still frame before the massacre is all we'll show you of the 17 horrifying minutes streamed on facebook live. police quickly tweeted they were aware of the extremely distressing footage and strongly urged that theink not be
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shared. t hours later the video stl visible online, raisin questions about tech companies' ability to control violent content. >> right now they claim they are surprised by this. there is no surprise. they've known this is a problem. dey've had the ability to stop it, and they havenloyed the technology to do it. >> reporter: facebook admits it was police that alerted them to the video and they quickly removed the gunman's facebook and instagram accounts. other companies also say they in placeorous processe to manage and remove flagged videos. >> you're looking at something like a game of whack a mole where it keeps popping up in different places. >> facebook says it was alerted to this video by the new zealand police. that means human moderators or artificial intelligence didn't catch it. >> it wouldn't necesrily know it was looking for this very precise thing. >> reporter: this is not the first time a heinous crime has a.en promoted on social me in 2017 a man in cleveland broadcast his cold-blooded shooting of a 74-year-old victim.af in 201r local news
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reporter alison parker and photo journalist anna moore were shot dead on television in virginia, the gunman posted body camera video of the attack online. more than threyears later, berspace still haunts allison's father. >> i was just astounded and angry that i have not been able to get all of the videos of allison taken down. 's outrageous to me. >> reporter: in addition to the video, facebook also says it's o reving any praise or support for the new zealand gunman. critics say, not fast enough. gabe gutierrez, nbc news, atlanta. president trump expressed condolences for new zealand from the oval office as he signed his first veto. nbc's haie jackson is at the white house.veni.or >> rr: lester, good evening to you. late today president trump issued that ve on what he called a reckless resolution, a bill that would have blocked his national emergency on the border wall. it's an emergency declaration now being challenged in court and at the capitol.
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that's where a dozen republicans voted against the president on i this measure, to put a check on presidential power. still, president trump today dismissed any internal gop drama and seemed confident in his approach. >> i put no pressure on anybody. i actually said i could have gotten some of them to come along. i said i want you to vote your heart, do what i want to do, i'm not putting any pressure. the case is a very strong case, very powerful case. it was i think actually national emergency was designed for a specific purpose like th. >> reporter: democrats will try to override that veto later on this month but it's not expected esat they'll have enough v lester? >> all right, hallie, thank you. we turn now to new developments inhe deadly ethiopian airlines crash with the cause still a mystery. the black bos are being analyzed in france as new details emerge abofl the ight's final moments. here's nbc's tom costello.>> eporter: in paris, investigators are analyzing ethiopian ight 302's badly damaged flight recorders, looking for clues into sunday's crash. already satellitdata confirms
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the ethiopian crew struggled to control the plane with erratic speed readings, much like th indonesian lion air crew struggled last october. the final radio conversation between the panickedthiopian captain and air traffic break, break, request back to ai home, the caradioed. request vector for landing. nbc news reported last night that investigators in ethiopia are looking closely athe position of the jackscrew that zeves the horizontal stabi that could indicate whether the nose of the plane was being ed foown, much like the indonesian plane. >> and eventually that's what you'd be loong at right there. >> reporter: retired air canada captain aaron murphy demonstrated how easy it is to switch off a malfunctioning o runaway trim meant to keep the plane flying level. but max pilots complain boeing never told them of new anti-stall system mcas that's deactivated the same way, now suspected of possibly causing the lion air crash.
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>> this is a training issue, because you should know how to deactivate that stem. aware the're not even system exists, you wouldn't even think of it. >> reporter: boeing plans to n.release a software fix s a preliminary black box report could be out within days but a complete report could take a nt which means the worldwide max fleet could remain grounded for weeks if not months. lester? >> tom costello tonight, thanks. there are new threats by north korea tonight o weeks after the talks between president trump and kim jong-un broke down. we get the response tonight from our chief foreign affairs correspondent andrea mitchell. >> reporter: north korea threatening to cut off talks and resume nuclear and missile tests. a top north korean official d cusing the u.s. of a gangster-like st the hanoi summit. the u.s. replying the president holds kim jong-un to his p not to test. >> that's chairman kim's word. we have every expectation he will live up to that commitment. >> reporter: trouble has been br ing since these satellite
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images show north korea is rapidly rebuilding a missile site kim promised to dismantle. still, the regime says relations between kim and the president hemistry, saying their is mysteriously wonderful. but critics say personal chemistry only goes so far. >> the underlying flaw here has been a diplomatic approach that's i think less focused on the hard work of diplomacy, and more on a kind of diplomacy of narcissism. so in a way i think the hanoi summit was a dose of reality. >> reporter: experts see north korea's threats as right out of their playbook, using bluster t achivantage in negotiations. the question is, what happenif the talks collapse and the tests resume? lester? >> andrea mitchell, thank you. breaking news out of boston where firefighters are battling a massive nine-alarm inferno atc a caskpany, heavy smoke forcing nearby residents to evacuate.no ord yet on injuries or cause. just ahead tonight, new revelations in the colge admissions cheating scandal. a new study out tonight on
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> up next for us, new up next for us, new details in that college admissions cheating scandal that stretcheso from holly to the heartland. nbc's morgan chesky now with the latest. >> no commont. >> reporteht more p?llout -- >> would you sto >> reporter: actors william h. macy and felicity huffman back in federal court. huffman one of 33 parents charged with fraud for paying to cheat college missions. also accused actress lori love lip, reportedly losing her nelix show "fuller house" a day after being dropped by the hallmark channel. >> i don't think we know yet whether it's the tip of the iceberg. i think in the weeks to come we'll learn whether this is rampant. >> reporter: in many cases parents paid thousands for a pro to take college admissions tests for their kids. former harvard tennis player $10,000 for every test he took.
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he's now cooperating with authorities saying, i am profoundly sorry for the damage done. >> it's just kind of like a slap in the face. >> reporter: tonight macy and huffman staying quiet. but it appeared huffman has taken down her website dedicated to parenting advice. now keep in tmind,s investigation is still ongoing. the alleged ringleader telling authorities over 750 families paid him to cheat them, meaning even more indictments could be coming. lester? >> morgan chesky in los angeles tonight, thanks. on> coming up, the big issue that had student strike around the world today. health warning about the eggs we eat. humira patients, you inspire us.
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ts took to the streets today in this country and far beyond calling on our leaders to do more to protect the planet. let's get more fm kelly cobiella. >> reporter: across america and around the globe, students todae on strike for the climate. >> school strike for climate han arrivemerica. >> reporter: alexandria villa senor isust 13 years old and has been on strike for nearly four months after seeing swedish teen greta thunberg calling out world leaders. >> you say you love your ildren above all else. yet you're stealing their future in front of their veryyes. >> reporter: alexandria helped e organizerotests across the u.s. and to the adults who say these kids should stay in school? >> adults didn't do anything to prevent this. so they shouldn't be telling us that. if enough youth keep striking and going out to the streets, having civil disobience will get the action that's needed.
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tonight we have an inside a lonew vertical landmark with its awe-inspiring views you can't miss. it's called vessel and our gadi sct'artz is there for tonighs "snapshot." >> reporter: for mons now in new york city, on the west side of manhattan, there have been a lot of questions. namely, what is this? >> a beehive for people. >> reminds me of hamsters on a wheel. >> reporter: they call it vessel.o in oappreciate what's going on here, you've got to t start fr bottom.
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>> it's bold. it's powerful. it's doing somethi unique. >> reporter: the designers say it's art you can climb on. a park in 3d. >> it's absolutely a soaring vertical city. >> eporter: over 150 staircases, nearly 2,500 steps to get tthe highest point. and we're almost there. we weren't alone. during today's grand opening w york's living icons putting in a whole lot of legwork. >> incredible. >> i le that it's not just one staircase. >> it's a magnificent addition to new york city. the porter: the view fr top worth every single step. i mean, look at this. a soaring new perspective of new yo city. and lester, this whole thing cost a prey penny to build. we're talking $200 million. but the best pt about it, it is free, it is open to the public. so if you haven't gotten your steps in, come on down. >> it's quite the view, gadi, thanks very much that's "nightly news" for this
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friday. we're happy to get you to your weekend. i'm lester holt. see you later for "dateline" friday. from all of us at nbc news, thank you for watching and good night. -we're doing karaoke later, and you're gonna sing. -jamie, this is your house? -i know, it's not much, but it's home. right, kids? -kids? -papa, papa! -[ laughs ] -you didn't tell me your friends were ming. -oh, yeah. -this one is tiny like a child. -yeah, she is. -thoh, but seriously,e a child. it's good to be surrounded by what matters most -- a home and auto bundfr.
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-oh, sweetie, please, play for us. t. -oh, no, i could -please. -okay. [ singing in spanish ] lights, camera -- "access"! >> are you worried about going to jail? >> hand in hand, felicity huffman in federal court with her w husband,illiam h. macy. and did this "desperate housewives" scene give them the idea?>> $15,000. >> we don't have that. >> in real life

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