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tv   ABC World News With David Muir  ABC  May 17, 2017 3:30pm-4:01pm PDT

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tonight -- breaking news as we come on the air. the department of justice, just moments ago, revealing they will appoint a special counsel. former fbi director robert mueller will now serve as special counsel overseeing the fbi investigation into russian meddling in the 2016 election, and any possible collusion with associates of the trump campaign. the department saying it's in the public interest, and it comes as many republicans now join democrats in demanding that james comey testify before the american people about the notes he took during his meetings with the president. also breaking, millions now bracing for severe storms at this hour. after a deadly tornado outbreak already. entire neighborhoods wiped out. new watches across several states tonight. and the disturbing video now emerging. new questions over who was behind these beatings not far from the white house.
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americans protesting the president of turkey and his visit to the white house. men in suits moving in. the bloody clash. good evening and it's great to have you with us here on wednesday night and we begin with that breaking held line -- the white house wliendsided tonight as the department of justice reveals that they'll appoint a special counsel to now oversee the fbi investigation into russian meddling and any possible collusion. former fbi director robert mueller will now lead the investigation. democrats and some republicans had been calling for this move, the news coming just 4 hours after we learned that former fbi director james comey who was fired by president trump kept notes about his meetings with the president. the department of justice saying just moments ago, a special counsel is necessary for the american people to have full confidence in the outcome pierre thomas leading us off. >> reporter: tonight a bombshell
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announcement -- the department of justice appoint onning a special counsel to take over the investigation into russia's interference with the 2016 election. including possible collusion with the trump campaign. the man now leading the investigation, former fbi director robert mueller. he'll have all the authorities of a u.s. attorney, including the ability to take the matter before a grand jury and the ability to issue subpoenas the announcement of a special counsel comes after attorney general jeff sessions recused himself. >> therefore, i have recused myself in the matters that deal with the trump campaign. >> reporter: president trump has called the investigation into possible collusion with members of his campaign a char raid. former fbi director james comey was in charge of the investigation until he was fired last week. tonight's dramatic announcement coming after that other bombshell, 4 hours ago, the memo coming to light about president trump's meeting in the oval office in february raising concerns mr. trump allegedly
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wanted the fbi to go easy on former national security adviser michael flynn. a president who warned the fbi director after firing him that james comey better hope there are no tapes of our conversations before leaking to the press. what we know according to sources is that memos do exist. james comey had a documented history of keeping notes especially when it came to controversial matters. tonight after it was revealed he wrote a memo saying the president pressured him to drop the flynn investigation. just as he documented his meeting in the oval office in february, one day after general flynn resigned. president trump acollegedly asking vice president mike pence and attorney general jeff sessions to exit the room after a briefing leaving the president alone with the fbi director. according the now-i famous memo described by a source close to
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comey, trump allegedly said i hope you can see your way of letting this go, he's a good guy. >> the president has been very clear that the account was published is not an accurate description of how the event occurred. >> reporter: but sources close to comey expect comey will testify before congress and the american people and that his memos will be made available. >> let's get to pierre thomas live in our washington bureau. pierre, back to this notion of a special counsel now, the fbi director james comey fired just last week, he was leading this investigation. this means former fbi director robert mueller steps in, this question tonight, what does it mean? does he start from scratch here? >> reporter: david, it's totally at the decession of mueller. he has 60 days to put together a team of lawyers to work with him on the case.
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a reminder about mueller, after serving ten years as fbi director he was asked by president obama to re-up ped. i want to get to jonathan karl tonight, you were telling me that the white house was blindsided. what have you learned tonight. >> reporter: they were completely taken offguard by this. as a matter of fact, i'm told the senior staff of the white house didn't get word of this until 30 minutes before the news was shared with the news media. it shouldn't have taken all that much by surprise. given the developments of the last few days. i'm starting to hear even from some republicans on capitol hill, welcoming this news, including jason chaffetz, he said mueller is a great selection, impeccable credentials. should be widely accepted. >> all right, 30 minutes' warning as you point out, jon
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as you could imagine, this news traveling quickly to capitol hill. where some republicans began joining some democrats calling for this move. both sides want james comey on the hill testifying before the american people about what he wrote about his meetings with the president. abc's mary bruce tonight on the hill. >> reporter: with his white house consumed by crises, president trump today venting to the coast guard graduation class. >> look at the way i've been treated lately. especially by the media. no politician in history -- and i say this with great assurety -- has been treated worse or more unfairly. >> reporter: back in washington, even members of the president's own party say we may be at a tipping point. >> i think it's reaching the point where it's of watergate size and scale. >> reporter: the latest allegations rippling through the
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republican party. that news the president may have asked then-fbi director james comey to shut down his investigation into fired national security adviser michael flynn. do you want comey to testify? >> i want facts! >> reporter: both parties are clamoring for comey to testify. mitch mcconnell telling the wall street journal -- i think we need to hear for him as soon as possible in public and leaders of three congressional committees say they want to see the moment know comey wrote, documenting his conversations with the president. >> on the surface that seems like an extraordinary use of influence to try to shut down an investigation being done by the fbi. >> do you want comey to testify? on the hill, a doesy day of dodges. >> republicans can't be okay with this. >> reporter: tonight, one republican congressman justin
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amash reportedly saying if the allegations in the comey memo are true it could be an impeachable offense. >> mr. speaker do you still have full confidence in the president? >> i do. >> reporter: 118 days into the new administration, republicans had hoped to be plowing ahead with their agenda, health care, tax reform, deregulation. instead they're careening from crisis to crisis. on the campaign trail, trump warned this would happen under a hillary clinton's presidency. >> if hillary clinton is elected she'll be understo investigatio. the investigation will last for years. to nothing will get done. >> that was the prediction had hillary clinton been elected. mary bruce on capitol hill tonight. we could see former fbi director
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james comey testifying next week. >> reporter: the house oversight wants the former fbi director to testify at a hearing here next wednesday. the senate intelligence committee is also eager to hear from comey. the top democrat on that committee telling me he's as confident as nick he'll be tefl soon. i want to bring in dan abrams, we heard from pierre thomas off the top there. he said mr. mueller can step in here and months after this fbi investigation, even before the election and he could start over. >> that's what an independent counsel means, it means he can now decide what he wants to do with all that information. i think it's really important that he bring in some of his own people. he doesn't want to be seen as just using the fbi people who are already there. expect him to put together his own team to draw his own conclusion. >> meantime you heard from lawmakers on the hill. some are beginning to use the
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term obstruction of justice. pointing to the memo that james comey reportedly wrote. many legal experts say this memo in and of itself doesn't mean obstruction of justice. >> the memo itself doesn't. you need the context. some of the other things that mueller will be looking at, are the reports, the demand of loyalty at a dinner, the fact that the president admitted that russia was on his mind when he fired comey. the fact that he was alone in the white house, asked jeff sessions and vice president pence to leave the room when he made these comments that were in the memo. take all of that together and most importantly, with james comey's account and then you assess -- is this obstruction or is not. >> a long summer ahead. dan, as always, thank you. i want to bring in cecilia vega tonight. she's set to travel with president trump on his first foreign trip. this white house was hoping this
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trip help them turn the page or reset. but the world leaders are watching this, too. >> they are. they were out toing how well this white house feels the president has been doing with foreign leaders ahead of this visit, especially heading into the muslim world. this will undoubtedly hang over president trump's head as will that conversation in the oval office where he's accused of giving highly classified intelligence to the russians. white house hoping to turn a page in this trip. they start in saud arabia, he head to the vatican. david, this is a white house now that heads into a foreign trip with a major crisis. the turmoil in white house blamed for the stock market suffering its worst losses this year. the dow falling 372 points. in the meantime, we're following other news at this hour. the deadly tornado outbreak in
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the heartland. another difficult night ahead and a state of emergency now declared in wisconsin. more than two dozen tornadoesed reported. and these pictures coming in to us just stunning out of wisconsin. severe storms moving east. abc's alex perez tonight from the storm zone. >> tornado warning. take shelter! >> reporter: tonight, a dangerous system on the move. >> the tornado completely all the way on the ground. >> reporter: twisters reported in six states. our clayton sandelle is in hard-hit elk city, oklahoma. >> this twister tore through here just after dinnertime. some 100 families' homes are severely damaged or destroyed. one person were killed but officials say the advanced warning saved many lives. >> reporter: driving dangerous, too -- this pickup hydroplaning on i-40. north of eau claire, wisconsin,
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another twister making a direct hit. >> the trailer park looks like it might've been leveled. >> reporter: one killed and dozens injured. first responders hearing their cries for help. >> when our officers arrived, >> they were pulling walls off of people and getting them out of their trailers. >> reporter: darla rutledge was standing in her home when the walls collapsed on her. >> didn't have a chance to do nothing. >> reporter: and david, hard to believe, but there were ten mobile homes here on this block, but this is all that's left. this area bracing for more storms tonight. david? >> bracing for another round, alex, thanks. to rob marciano with the track. >> four reported tornadoes tonight. we got watches up. look at the radar, all of iowa, part of wisconsin, chicago the western suburbs you may get a rumble of thunder or strong storms tonight. as this rotates off the great lakes. the big show back in the plains, again, western kansas, oklahoma and texas, could see long-track damaging tornadoes tomorrow. >> rob, thank you. in the last 24 hours, there
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have been some new and startling images emerging from washington, d.c., it all happened as the highly controversial president of turkey was visiting here to meet president trump at the white house. protesters in the nation's capital allegedly attacked by president erdogan's own security. some of the people attacked in this video were americans who were protesting. here's martha raddatz tonight. >> reporter: tonight, washington police are analyzing this video, to identify the men who started this violent melee. peaceful protesters, some americans, attacked, allegedly by pro-government supporters and turkish security personnel guarding the visiting turkish president. watch those men in dark suits and ties, and brown shirts who are armed, charging the protesters, kicking them to the ground -- men and women -- again and again. police trying to pull them off. the security guards racing to
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the next protester while others walked around dazed and bloodied. 11 people injured. police making two arrests. >> it appears to be unprovoked and it appears to be very brutal. >> reporter: the violence coming just hours after president trump welcomed erdogan at the white house, calling it an honor. the crowd there to protest a man who has tightened his grip on power by jailing thousands of political opponents at home. tonight the state department saying, "we support the rights of people everywhere to free expression and peaceful protest." >> let's get to martha live with us in d.c. tonight. martha, these guards are tied to the turkish embassy. could they diplomatic immunity. >> they could. they're still pursuing this case in case anybody lives here. >> that was a stunning scene. there's still much more ahead on within wouldn't tonight this wednesday -- the alarming video raising questions tonight. high school students pepper
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sprayed for extra credit. apparently they volunteered, their parents gave the okay but did the school go too far tonight? also, the violent hit and run crash involving a school bus, overturning on an american highway, one student ejected and the search for the driver who caused the crash. alarming scene off the east coast. summer scene is almost here. memorial day approaching and where the sharks have been spotted now. young people when they thought they should start saving for retirement. then we asked some older people when they actually did start saving. this gap between when we should start saving and when we actually do is one of the reasons why too many of us aren't prepared for retirement. just start as early as you can. it's going to pay off in the future. if we all start saving a little more today, we'll all be better prepared tomorrow. prudential. bring your challenges. there'try phillips' fiberway to ggood gummies..
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but barberton high school says the kids not only volunteered for it, they got permission from their parents as part of a criminal justice class. the school district tells abc news the instructor is a former police chief. and this is the waiver the school says parents signed, describing the pepper spraying "it will cause irritation and a burning sensation to the eyes and nasal area for approximately 30 minutes to 1 hour." a popular law enforcement blog calling it or the tors you. >> if he's going to be a police officer and if he's going to have these weapons, to use on people, he needs to know how they feel. >> reporter: and david, tonight the school district says over over again that added supervision was provided. the new headline about the age where most women are having babies here in the u.s. the search for a hit and run driver after a school bus overturned. the brawl breaking out at high school graduation between parents right there in the
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to the index and thor is. for a hit and run suspect who may have caused a violent school bus crash. they're searching for a driver of a white sedan hit the back of big rig escort vehicle, forcing the escort vehicle to sideswipe a bus. 15 students and the bus driver suffered injuries. an ugly brawl marring a high school graduation in tennessee. the dispute escalating in the aisle with punches thrown inside the church there where arlington high school graduates were sefik their diplomats. it's believed it was a dispute over seats. in south carolina, a pair of sharks spotted just feet from the shore near garden city. not the first time we have seen a shark scare this year in south carolina. a woman suffering a bite two weeks ago. and women in the u.s. are having babies later in life, according to the cdc mothers
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call me, bye. >> reporter: it was then rebecca realized how much she had missed. >> i never made it to my sister elsie's funeral because i was working. >> reporter: a single mom, she raised two sons in boston. >> three of us on one paycheck. wasn't easy. >> reporter: one of rebecca's sons helped her realize her bucket list, and the journey began, chronicled in his documentary, "duty free." taking a hip-hop lesson with a dancer from "hamilton." a return home to england. she even joined instagram. >> just press the heart. there you go. >> reporter: after being alive for 75 years, it's just in the last year rebecca started to truly live. ♪ ♪ >> can i come? an incredible mother and son. i hope to see you right back here tomorrow. good night. >> announcer: now from abc7, live breaking news. >> good afternoon, thank you for
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joining us. i'm alma daetz. >> i'm larry beil. breaking news on capitol hill this afternoon. the deputy attorney general has named a special counsel to investigate the trump campaign's ties to russia. >> former fbi director robert muller will over see the investigation into russia meddling and ties to the trump campaign. muler is appointed head of the fbi difficult george w. bush. he served from 2001 to 2013. >> deputy attorney general rod rosenstein made his announcement with the official order issued about an hour ago. the white house did not even know this has happening until 30 minutes beforehand. in the statement accompanying it, rosenstein said, my decision is not a finding that crimes have been committed or that any prosecution is warranted. i have made no such determination. >> he made this appointment because attorney general jeff sessions has recused himself from the ongoing investigation beause of his role in the trump campaign. muller will have 60 days to put together a budget for resources to conduct the investigation. he will have subpoena powers.
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>> now, as it turns out, robert mummer does have bay area roots. >> abc7 news anchor kristen sze is in the newsroom with that part of the story. kristen. >> we were doing that research, he cut his teeth in san francisco. he worked as a litigator here. fresh out of law school until 1976, muller's career took him to u.s. attorney offices including the san francisco office where he became chief of the criminal division. and then he again left the bay area in 1982, but came back in 1998 as the u.s. attorney for the northern district of california. and he held that position until 2001 when, as you mentioned, president george w. bush named him fbi director. muller gained fame leading the agency through the aftermath of the september 11th terror attacks. finally retiring in 2013. and after that muller was again back in the bay area working with stan ford university on issues of online networks


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