tv ABC World News Tonight With David Muir ABC January 17, 2020 5:30pm-6:00pm PST
tonight, the major winter storm. drivers stranded, a plane off the runway. blizzard conditions already tonight. more than 100 million americans in the path. blinding snow, dangerous winds, that passenger jet losing control. from the rockies into the northeast. philadelphia, new york, boston, all in the path. rob marciano standing by with the track. also tonight, concerns over a possible outbreak. federal officials now at several major american airports in place, set to screen certain travelers. what we know about this mysterious virus. the highway shooter, a gunman opening fire at passing cars. at least 20 cars hit. what authorities have now revealed. the iran missile attack on the u.s. military. what we did not know. u.s. service members wounded, checked for concussions.
several flown out for treatment. new arrests just as we come on tonight amid the state of emergency in virginia. authorities say there have been trial.le threats involving impt president trump's legal team revealed tonight. including ken starr and alan dershowitz. in new york city, the deadly gas explosion that made national headlines, leveling several buildings, killing two. tonight, the major new headline. and our person of the week. she's been known as rose, as sue ann. she fights for animals. and tonight she marks a giant birthday. who is our person of the week? good evening. it's great to have you with us here on a very busy friday night. for millions it has already been a rough ride home tonight. a monster winter storm bearing down on much of this country. more than 100 million americans under alerts from the rockies all the way into the northeast. drives facing blinding snow and gusting winds. this is moorhead, minnesota,
where cars areffhe highways tonight.jesl off the taxiway in kansas city. runways shutting down. more than 4,000 flights delayed or cancelled already. tonight, news coming in of a deadly avalanche hitting a ski resort near lake tahoe. at least one person killed. the storm heading to chicago and then right into the east. several major cities in the path. we have the timing and the track for you. alex perez is in the storm zone. >> reporter: tonight, blizzard warnings in the upper midwest, that power storm creating whiteout conditions. vehicles stranded, visibility near zero. this u.p.s. truck jackknifing on interstate 94 in north dakota. in omaha, nebraska, drivers struggling for traction. >> this car continuing to have issues as it makes its way up the hill. >> reporter: first responders racing to accident scenes. >> we had to extricate that person, removing the roof of the vehicle. >> reporter: an icy glaze
covering this kansas state trooper's cruiser. going tbelieve this, but we hit a patch of ice and somebody is going to have to tow us out of here. >> reporter: conditions forcing the airfield to close for a time. around the country, more than 4,000 flights delayed or cancelled. in the west, a deadly avalanche near lake tahoe, california. >> they are assembling the nordic rescue team. >> total patient count is two at this time. >> reporter: a 34-year-old man killed and another person seriously hurt at the alpine meadows ski resort after more than two feet of snow in just 24 hours. david, you can see, check it out, the snow already falling at a steady clip here in chicago. things will get messy here. some areas will get five inches of snow, which will then be followed by ice and freezing rain as the night goes on. just getting around is going to be a big headache for a lot of people. also, david, there's a ground stop at o'hare because of this weather.
alex, thanks to you. let's get back to rob. he's timing it out just as we all start this weekend. hey, rob. >> reporter: hi, david. this storm now phasing together. it's a full-on blizzard across the northern plains, moving rapidly to the northeast. the only thing positive i can find with this is it's moving relatively quickly. moving to chicago. the warnings still up from colorado all the way up through northern new england. let's time it out. detroit, i think you see snow for most of this event. i-80 is the cutoff line. moving to philly, new york, and boston, with accumulations there. ice accumulations as well. here in upstate new york where it's been a slow start for winter, it will be white come this time tomorrow night. >> winter is back. rob marciano, thanks to you. as several airports brace for this storm, they're preparing for something else tonight. there is growing concern at this hour over a possible outbreak of a mystery virus.
federal authorities preparing to screen certain passengers coming into the u.s. the pneumonia-like illness first reported in the china, spreading to japan and thailand. the cdc will begin screening thousand of passengers in new york, l.a., and san francisco. abc's gio benitez and our dr. jen ashton tonight on what you need to know. >> reporter: tonight, a massive screening effort begins for about 5,000 passengers arriving from china after a mysterious respiratory virus has killed 2 and sickened at least 45 in asia. the cdc deploying about 100 experts at san francisco international, l.a.x., and new york's jfk, where the first flight from wuhan, china, arrives in just hours. >> they'll be asked where they were in the previous two weeks, whether they came into contact with any animals, whether they had any symptoms of an upper respiratory infection. >> reporter: experts believe this is a new kind of coronavirus, which typically
causes symptoms of the common cold, but in some rare cases can lead to pneumonia. an outbreak of two other corona viruses, sars and mers, proved deadly. but tonight it's unclear if this new virus is easily spread from person to person. >> other coronaviruses like sars and mers have taught us they need to be taken seriously. >> reporter: most of the patients in china contracted this virus at a seafood and meat market in wuhan, but some cases have already been reported in thailand and japan where screening is also under way. >> this is obviously very concerning, so gio is with us from a busy kennedy airport tonight. gio, the cdc is calling this a serious situation tonight. >> reporter: yeah, david, that's because more than 60,000 people travel from wuhan to america every year. the cdc says the risk to the american public is low, but, david, they want to be ready. >> better to be ahead of it. gio benitez, thank you. next this friday night, the alleged highway shooter arrested in north carolina tonight, accused of shooting at least 20 cars over two days.
tonight, the images of shattered windows. and authorities now say the shooter is just 14. here's victor oquendo. >> reporter: this car window shattered by a suspected highway sniper. >> it was still just mind-blowing and still shocking to see something like that. >> reporter: it all happened along u.s. 264 in north carolina this week. authorities say at least 20 passing cars were shot at and damaged with a high-powered pellet rifle. the wilson county sheriff says they started receiving calls yesterday morning, drivers reporting bullets blasting through their windows. others saying the sides of their cars had been damaged. hugh scott is a principal at a local school. he was on his way to a school sporting event when his car got hit. >> i thought this was an isolated incident at the time. finding out that more vehicles had been shot, i felt that i needed to make people aware that this isn't a hoax. >> reporter: tonight, deputies arresting a 14-year-old boy, releasing these images of a nest made out of tree branches. that's where officials believe the teen hid and fired shots at passing cars.
>> i am truly blessed and very grateful that this wasn't a greater or more serious incident. >> reporter: deputies set up patrols and undercover surveillance. they found ammunition near the apparent nest and that's what led them to the 14-year-old suspect who lives in that area. tonight he's been charged as a juvenile. thankfully, no one was hurt. >> victor, thank you. turning to new reporting on the iran missile attack on the u.s. military. members wounded, checked for concussion, flown out for treatment. president trump has said no americans were harmed in the attack, but u.s. officials now confirming at least 11 service members were wounded. when did the pentagon know? here's martha raddatz tonight. >> reporter: on the night of the iranian missile attacks and the hours immediately following, president trump and pentagon officials said there were no injuries from the missile strikes and that the damage was
only minimal. >> no americans were harmed in last night's attack by the iranian regime. >> reporter: the u.s. forces benefited from an early warning system, and most were in bunkers at the time of the attack, but we now know on the very night of the attack, january 8th, a number of service members were examined for concussions, although they returned to duty following the attack. soon afterwards, some of the injured reported persistent symptoms, and others reported new ones. on january 10th, one service member had to be flown out of iraq for treatment. on tuesday at a campaign rally, the president repeated that there were no injuries. >> i said, how many killed? nobody, sir. i said, how many hurt? they said, nobody, sir. >> reporter: the next day, january 15th, ten additional
service members were flown out to either germany or kuwait and screened for traumatic brain injury. less than 24 hours later, the defense secretary was notified and prepared a statement that was released shortly after the story first appeared in "defense one." >> let's get right to martha raddatz, live in washington tonight. the president said no injuries, as you reported, for days. do we know when the pentagon and white house learned of all of this? >> reporter: the pentagon says leadership didn't know about the medical evacuations until yesterday because the forces in iraq would not have been required to report them unless they were considered life-threatening. but david, a lot of questions still remain. >> martha raddatz tonight. martha, thank you. now to the senate impeachment trial. president trump's legal team revealed tonight, including two well-known names who often appear on cable news. hear's terry moran. >> reporter: finally, after weeks of indecision,ourc say team to represent him at his senate impeachment trial, and it
includes a couple of big names. ken starr, the former independent counsel whose investigation into president bill clinton's affair with monica lewinsky triggered clinton's impeachment. and high-profile harvard law professor alan dershowitz. both men have been frequent and vocal defenders of the president's on fox news. >> they would be abusing their power if they impeach president trump on this record. >> it is a lesson, and a nasty lesson, in how not to do impeachment. >> both men also represented convicted sex offender jeffrey epstein, who committed suicide last year, helping to negotiate a lenient sentence for epstein in 2008. dershowitz also helped to defend o.j. simpson. already, and not surprisingly, there's confusion on the trump team. dershowtiz, who will handle the constitutional issues surrounding impeachment, today telling dan abrams he's not really on the president's team. >> i will be there for one hour, basically, presenting my argument, but i'm not a full-fledged member of the
defense team in any realistic sense of that term. >> reporter: as for starr, after the clinton impeachment, donald trump had to this say about him. >> i think ken starr is a lunatic. i really think that ken starr is a disaster. >> reporter: starr and dershowitz join a defense team led by white house counsel pat cippollone and president trump's personal lawyer jay sekulow. >> let's get to terry moran. the president wanted at one point his strongest defenders from the house to make his case in the senate, but it looks like that won't happen. >> reporter: it won't. think of the house proceedings. they were ferocious defenders of the president, and he wanted them in the senate. mitch mcconnell, senate majority leader, said that's not going work, because in part having house memb president and prosecute the president just didn't work, and in general, they want a more lawyerly defense in this impeachment trial. david? >> terry, thank you. next this friday evening, word of new arrests amid a state of emergency in virginia.
the fbi arresting three suspected members of the neo-nazi group the base in georgia. reports of credible threats from those alleged neo-nazis. here's kyra phillips. >> reporter: tonight in georgia, police say three suspected members of a neo-nazi group called the base are under arrest, charged with conspiracy to murder members of the left wing group antifa. the fbi linking to case to the arrest of three other armed members who investigators believe were plotting to attend a gun rights rally in richmond, virginia, with hopes of starting a racial war. >> we had received credible intelligence from oulaw foenencies that there are groups with malicious plans. >> reporter: virginia's governor declaring a state of emergency, temporarily bann
two years after a neo-nazi plowed his car into a crowd of protesters in charlottesville, killing 32-year-old heather heyer and injuring dozens of others. now police believe this man, a member of the base, and a former canadian army reservist with explosives training, arrested this week in delaware, trained with the three men under arrest in georgia. >> kyra, i know they're stepping security ahead of the rally in richmond? >> reporter: they sure are. law enforcement sources telling me tonight, david, there's a much heavier presence of both local and state police. they don't want to see another charlottesville. we are also told tonight some counterprotesters are also pulling out amid safety concerns. >> kyra, thank you. the jury is set for the harvey weinstein sexual assault
trial in new york. seven men and five women have been set to hear the case. several accusers could testify against him. weinstein has insisted he did nothing wrong. opening statements next wednesday. a new setback for boeing as it tries to get its grounded fleet of max jets back in the air. the company discovering a new issue with the software update. the problem involves a function that makes sure system monitors are working properly. boeing now with another problem to solve before the jets can fly again. the fleet grounded ten months ago, of course, following the two deadly crashes overseas. there is still much more ahead on "world news tonight" this friday. the massive explosion late today, the pictures coming in tonight. the aerial footage showing flames shooting into the skies as a propane tank facility ignites. first responders on the scene right now. more in a moment. the other explosion. this one in new york city. leveling bgs and killi tw case. we'll have that. and the pickup truck slamming into a starbucks. customers and employees injured.
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biotene did make a difference. [heartbeat] you'll remember the images from here in new york city, that massive building explosion that killed two in 2015. tonight, a building landlord and contractors have been sentenced for an illegal gas line that turned deadly. here's erielle reshef. >> reporter: tonight, sentences handed down for the deadly gas explosion in manhattan that destroyed three buildings, killing two and injuring more than a dozen. this was the scene in 2015. surveillance video capturing the moment of the blast. a five-story building engulfed in flames. investigators saying the fireball was sparked by an illegally tapped gas line to make unlicensed renovations. the three suspects learning their fate today. building owner maria hrynenko, athanasios ioannidis, and dilber kukich all sentenced today to 4 to 12 years in state prison. the victims saying the
punishment is too light. >> we just wanted justice and wanted them to feel our pain. >> reporter: the blast shed light on the vulnerabilities in new york city's infrastructure. the d.a. today saying sentencing is a consequence of cutting corners for profit. david? >> erielle, thank you. when we come back, news of another massive blast, this one a propane blast late today. the pictures coming in right now. the $60 million painting and where it was discovered. and the new koala at an american zoo. koala at an american is zoo. eople who have n hospitalized for a heart attack. brilinta is taken wia low-. no more than 100 milligrams as it affects how well brilinta works. brilinta helps keep platelets from sticking together and forming a clot. in a clinical study, brilinta worked better than plavix. brilinta reduced the chance of having another heart attack... ...or dying from one. don't stop taking brilinta without talking to your doctor, since stopping it too soon increases your risk of clots in your stent, heart attack, stroke, and even death. brilinta may cause bruising or bleeding more easily,
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the art world. experts confirming a painting found by a gardener hidden in the wall of an art gallery is a klimt masterpiece. "portrait of a lady" reported stolen in 1997. authorities don't know still who took it. worth an estimated $66 million. the first surviving koala at the miami zoo. officials naming her hope in honor of the animals killed in the australian wildfires. calling it a, quote, symbol for a positive future for wildlife there. and some good news tonight, there is some rain in the forecast across much of australia over the next week. when we come back tonight, it was a very big birthday today for an american icon. these been called rose, sue ann. who is our person of the week? ann. who is our person of the week?
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finally tonight here, our person of the week. she's been golden from the very start, and tonight she's celebrating a birthday. our person of the week. she's been in show business for more than 80 years. and today betty white turned 98. >> one, two -- >> long before that famous sitcom, betty white was already america's golden girl. >> the older you get, the better you get. unless you're a banana. >> reporter: sweet, funny, she's no slouch. the famous super bowl commercial. >> mike, what is your deal, man? >> oh, come on, man. you've been riding me all day. >> reporter: there's been a twinkle in her eye from the very start. >> isn't it simply beautiful out there? >> reporter: she was in "the proposal" with ryan reynolds and sandra bullock. >> pleasure. >> do you prefer being called margaret or satan's mistress? >> reporter: tonight, they have
a message for her. ♪ happy birthday to you ♪ happy birthday to you >> reporter: they keep going. ♪ happy birthday ♪ dear betty ♪ from sandy who loves you more than ryan ♪ ♪ from ryan who loves you so much more than sandy ♪ >> of course, we love her too. so many campaigned to get her on "snl." >> great to be here for a number of reasons. people think, poor old betty white. she doesn't know what she's saying. oh, yes, you do. >> reporter: happy birthday, betty white. and so we choose betty white, a treasure. i'm david muir. good night. ere areo wordss e a bab
it tk out safely. an avalanche has taken the life of a skier. the resort where it happened no stranger to these natural disasters. you did do that? >> yeah. >> why? >> it was personal. >> a pastor talks about why he was arrested for making criminal threats against his former church. that breaking news is here. the scene of a fatal hit and run. you can see there where it is. police found a woman in the street a couple of hours ago. >> it happened right in front of the middle school. police say they received several 911 calls today. witnesses told them the car that hit the woman is a newer model white nissan.
we'll follow this story on air and online. good evening. >> a skier is dead after an avalanche this morning. >> it happened around 10:15 just west of lake tahoe. >> fiofficials say the avalanch was in an advanced ski area, but not the back country. >> reporter: today's tragedy happened in an area they describe near promised land. this is a tragedy in this community. skiers know each other. the man involved today was cole comstock. he was pronounced dead at the scene. the 34-year-old lived in a small town of a few dozen people north of tahoe. a