tv NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt NBC July 20, 2018 5:30pm-6:00pm PDT
karaoke bar at night. >> i like that one. lester holt is next with nightly news. thank you for joining us. >> bye. tonight, the death toll rises to 17. the victims including children as young as 1 in that duck boat disaster in missouri. the governor now says nine of the dead are from the same family. >> those poor people. >> no kidding, oh my god. >> and there are growing questions tonight about why that boat went out in such violent weather. new tornadoes on the ground after severe storms ripped through neighborhoods, homes blown away and dangerous weekend. al roker is here. the trump tape surprise. president trump's lawyer michael cohen secretly recording him talking about money and a former playboy model that claims they had a year-long affair. more people sickened, more states affected in an
outbreak linked to mcdonald's. and a new warning about summer vacation scams. travel fraud is soaring. you think you booked a place in paradise and it's not what you expected. tonight, buyer beware. >> announcer: this is "nbc nightly news" with lester holt. good evening from los angeles as we welcome viewers in the west. we begin with the tour boat disaster in missouri where tonight all 17 of those killed have been recovered from the now calm waters of a branson area lake, more than half of them from one family. the same waters last night whipped into a frenzy by a violent summer storm. the waves overwhelming the amphibious vessel better known as a duck boat. the victims including many children unable to escape before the boat vanished below the surface. tonight, there is shock, sadness and many questions about why the boat was on the lake in the face of an oncoming storm. our kerry sanders has the latest. >> reporter: today, a
grim recovery effort as divers pulled four more bodies from table rock lake. the tragedy that left 17 people dead including nine members of one family and driver bob williams began in a furious storm. >> a little storm. >> need a water rescue, will be north of the show boat. will be a duck that has capsized. >> reporter: this video captured by a horrified woman on the shore. >> oh, those poor people. >> reporter: moments later the duck boat went down. the oldest victim 70 years old, the youngest just 1. >> i'm so sad for the families, and i ask everyone to pray. we are with them 100% through our tears. >> reporter: duck boats are popular with tourists across the country. the amphibious vehicles first used in world war ii travel on land and splash into the water. the dangerous thunderstorm yesterday was predicted.
65 mile-per-hour winds kicking up five-foot waves. with the duck in trouble, more than a dozen employees at park marina raced to help but when they got there, there was no one to save. what did you see in the water? >> i saw debris everywhere, empty life preservers. >> empty? >> yeah. >> reporter: as if nobody put them on? >> yeah. >> it's very eerie just to see the life jackets floating and life rings floating and nobody in them. >> reporter: the national transportation safety board launched an investigation into what went wrong. the duck boat tour company says it's cooperating. >> we just wish that it hadn't had happened, but, you know, we'll do everything we can to find out why it that it dot make su again. >> reporter: the duck went down here in about 80 feet of water.theyope to have it out of the water sometime next week so they can inspect it to see if any mechanical issues contributed to the disaster. duck boat tours have been involved in at
least three other major accidents from seattle to philadelphia, among the worst in 1999. 13 people drowned when a duck sank in hot springs, arkansas, the disaster blamed on inadequate maintenance. there was a second boat in the water that made it to shore safely with all of its passengers. investigators want to know why those on board the duck that sank didn't put on their life jackets when the weather whipped up. >> that video so difficult to watch. let's hope they get the answers they need. kerry sanders, thank you. there are new thief, evening, there are new tornadoes spinning through the midwest after iowa got hit hard yesterday. twisters were left there and a trail of destruction and a threat is far from over as we head into the weekend. in a moment al roker joins us with a forecast, but first we get details on the damage done from nbc's ron mott. >> reporter: a series of storms churned through the midwest this evening. tornados blowing through southern
indiana and in kentucky, rain, wind and hail. >> this is terrible. >> reporter: this following a string of destructive tornados in iowa yesterday. one after another they hit. today a distraught ashley thomas came back to the pile that was her home looking for anything they could salvage. if you didn't have this basement -- >> my heart goes out to everybody in this town. >> reporter: her family, friend and pets in the house at the time were all spared. >> i just count my blessings right now because that could have been a whole lot worse. >> reporter: the tornados hit marshall town, pela hard and afterwards, significant damage. the historic courthouse, cars, metal and glass scattered, and thick hearty trees toppled. >> oh, my god! >> the high school got taken apart. >> reporter: yesterday's late afternoon storms
caught some by surprise and had residents racing to safety and more than a dozen injuries were reported. >> my understanding is minor injuries, cuts and bruises. >> reporter: iowa's governor grateful nobody died. >> i think how blessed we are when you take a look at devastation and destruction that nobody died is a miracle. >> reporter: while the cleanup continues, ashley thomas found something unexpected. >> come here, kitty. >> reporter: her outside cat chloe alive. somehow surviving. the tornado that struck pela to our south was classified as an ef-3 with wind gusts at 144 miles per hour. it's the strongest tornado to hit iowa since 2015.t toe classified by the national weather service, but given the damage, it could surpass or rival that one down in pela. lester? >> ron mott, thank you. let's bring in al roker in new york with more on the threat into the night and
this weekend. which areas are you watching closely? >> reporter: lester, right now we're seeing activity firing up again. we've got tornado watches and severe thunderstorm watches and we've even got a tornado warning right now in kentucky as these storms are firing up you can see from ohio all the way down into kentucky and tennessee we're watching this very closely. here is the area that we're most concerned with. we're stretching from western tennessee all the way into parts of kentucky and southern indiana. 38 million people at risk, strong winds, hail, potential for tornados especially overnight tonight. so we're going to be watching that closely. the other big story, lester, is the heat. excessive heat. 80 million people at risk for heat advisory watches or warnings in texas we are looking at triple digit heat. dallas setting a record today. that's going to into the weekend, triple digits for russell, for dallas, for austin and alexandria, laredo and as we head out west, the heat gets building on sunday and moves into the midweek period with triple digits again for phoenix, las vegas, fresno, not quite as
bad as we are but awfully toasty with temperatures in los angeles getting up into the mid to upper 90s. but again, the most -- the biggest thing we're most worried about, severe storms moving through the mid mississippi river valley. >> al roker, thank you. the potential bombshell involving president trump and his longtime personal attorney. new revelations that michael cohen secretly taped the president discussing a possible payment to keep an alleged affair with a former "playboy" model quiet. and now that tape is in the hands of the fbi. details. >> reporter: tonight sex, money, and the the longtime lawyer michael cohen secretly recorded a conversation with candidate trump about former playboy model karen mcdougal that claims she has a year-long affair with president trump more than a decade ago. a source says heard on
that recording made two months before the 2016 election, the men discussing whether to reimburse the "national enquirer's" parent company that had rights to the story. the white house denies any affair took place. >> i'm not a liar. i'll perceived as a liar or a nut and all these bad names. i did what i did. i'm not proud of it. >> reporter: the fbi seizing the recording this year during a raid on cohen's office, according to "the new york times." part of the justice department's investigation into cohen's role paying women to avoid embarrassing headlines about mr. trump ahead of the election. the president's lawyer, rudy giuliani, says mr. trump never made that payment, no story about the affair was published. "wall street journal" reports, is less than two minutes long and cuts off before the conversation ends. did michael cohen p noring reporters' questions. the revelations highlight tactics used by the president's lawyer to keep his life secret demonstrating the legal and political threat cohen may pose to the
president after cohen, who a year ago said he'd take a bullet for mr. trump now says he puts family and country first. >> are you worried michael cohen might flip? >> look, i did nothing wrong. you have to understand. this stuff would have come out a long time ago. i did nothing wrong. >> reporter: rudy giuliani says the recording shows president trump did nothing wrong, but tonight michael c cohe cohen's lawyer says, quote, any spin cannot change what is on the tape. lester? >> peter alexander, at the white house tonight, thank you. there is a developing story we're following in houston. a murder mystery, a search fora ev prominent doctor who has previously treated former president george h.w. bush. nbc's tammy leitner has late details. >> reporter: tonight, an urgent manhunt for a gunman that shot and killed a renowned houston cardiologist during morning rush hour. the doctor was riding his bike to work at methodist hospital when the gunman also on a bike opened fire. >> the suspect was on
a bicycle, as well drove past, rode past the doctor, turned and fired two shots. the doctor immediately went down. >> reporter: dr. house connect on the team of doctors that treated former president george h.w. bush in 2000. >> dr. house is an expert on cardiology. >> reporter: the 41st president tonight saying mark was a fantastic cardiologist and a good man. i will always be grateful for his exceptional compassionate care. his family is in our prayers. the houston medical community mourning one of their own. not only was he ved by his patients, but mark was highly regarded among his peers and colleagues. tonight, police say they are unsure if the doctor was targeted. >> a lot of cameras, so we're hoping that we can get footage of this and bring this violent criminal into custody where he needs to be right away. >> reporter: a man who dedicated four decades to saving lives tragically losing his own. tammy leitner, nbc news.
more than 100 ohio state alsthaumni h accounts of sexual misconduct by a former university doctor. that's according to the school which launched an investigation into the allegations against richard strous who died by suicide in 2005. the case has gotten a lot of attention after jim jordan was accused of knowing about but not reporting the abuse while jordan worked as an assistant wrestling coach at ohio state. jordan denied any knowledge. we'll take a turn now to a heartbreaking tragedy in texas. a little boy left inside a scorching hot daycare van and hours later found dead. his death one of more than two dozen involving children in hot vehicles across the country this year. nbc's kristen dahlgren has a warning for parents. >> reporter: tonight, 3-year-old raymond prior or r.j. was remembered by his family. >> we love you, r.j.
>> reporter: his >> we love you! >> reporter: his father went to pick him up last night and found the little boy was left in this hot daycare bus for four hours. the temperature inside 113 degrees. >> it's tragic that children are left in their vehicles, especially in the heat of the summer. as we know, we've got record heat right now. >> reporter: officials say the discovery academy in houston had taken kids on a field trip. >> a few hours later, i seen the owner come out and a gentleman with her, the dad and screaming and hollering. right then i knew something was wrong. >> reporter: they say a grand jury will decide if anyone is charged in the death. the daycare didn't return our request for comment. on thursday a 4-year-old died after being in this hot car in connecticut. his 2-year-old brother is expected to be okay. but police are still investigating how the boys got in the car. 27 children have died in hot cars so far this year across 17 states. >> he's okay.
>> reporter: tragedy was averted in florida this week when a good samaritan saw a baby the mother returned almost half an hour later relieved to find her baby is okay. >> i always think how can that possibly ever happen. >> reporter: the reason authorities are again warning parents and telling everyone to look out for children left in any vehicle. kristen dahlgren, nbc news. >> we're going to take a break, and still ahead, do you need to book that vacation? buyer beware of summer travel scams, what to watch out for and how to protect yourself. warning, the outbreak of illness officials have linked to mcdonald's spreading to even more states. we'll be right back.
we're back now with a vacation scam warning as we're halfway through the mm travel season, cases of so-called travel fraud jump 16% last year and there is every indication they are up again this year. you think you've booked a beautiful place, you pay out and show up and it's not at all what you were promised. nbc's tom costello tonight how to keep scammers from ruining your vacation. >> reporter: you're packed and ready to go, the hotel or rental house is booked but are you sure your reservatns are legit? >> it looked beautiful. it had good reviews. the place looked amazing. >> reporter: linda booked a beach condo online and the ad promised beachfront, super clean and photos but this is what they got instead. the bathroom looked new in the ad but linda says they found holes in the ceiling and mildew in the tub. >> oh, it was a dump. >> reporter: summer is the high season for travel fraud as vacationers look to save money by booking
through third parties and shady apps. last year 15 million rental scams cost up to $588 each on average. and beware if you travel overseas, cancun, paris, madrid and barcelona are among the cities with the most fraudulent hotel reservations. >> how dare you take our house and scam someone out of their vacation and money? >> reporter: in oregon scammers have twice stolen the ad caroline o'bryan placed to rent out her vacation home and posted it on another site and charged unsuspecting victims who showed up to learn the house was already rented. >> it's just heartbreaking because people look so forward to their weeks at the beach and with their entire family and holidays. >> reporter: to avoid getting scammed, experts advice booking directly with hotels and reputable websites, and be skeptical. if the deal or discount seems too good to be true, it may be. tom costello, nbc news, washington.
the nfl suspended its controversial new policy for now that required players to either stand for the national anthem or stay in the locker room for it. the move came after backlash to reports that the miami dolphins were considering suspending players up to four games for violating the rules. the dolphins released ng t language about suspensions in their new conduct policy was just a placeholder and they have made no decisions about discipline yet. tonight the foodborne outbreak linked
to mcdonald's salad is growing. the cdc says 163 people have now been sickened across ten states after eating salads contaminated with a parasite. mcdonald's stopped selling them at 3,000 restaurants. health officials say since the company pulled the salads, there is likely not an on going risk to people who eat there. scary moments in a highway in florida. look at this, a semi was left hanging off the edge of a bridge high above a river after police say the driver lost control during this morning's rush hour. the driver escaped and crews eventually managed to pull that truck back up but quite a sight. when we come back, the major milestone for the competition that brings some of man who polices them... must
tonight the special olympics is celebrating its 50th anniversary. half a century of empowering athletes and changing perceptions around the globe. the story in tonight's "inspiring america" report. 50 years ago, the special olympics began with a courageous message delivered by eunice kennedy shriver. >> let me win, but if i cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt. >> her idea transformed the lives of people with intellectual sabilities throug the joy of sports, a dream inspired by her sister rosemary that spent most of her life in an institution. 50 years later, more than 5 million athletes from 172 countries compete and tim shriver is keeping his mom's dream alive. >> everyone deserves to have a chance to have their gift celebrated. and if they've been told they don't have gifts, we're here to tell them that's a lie, you do have a gift. >> reporter: this year a special unified
program where athletes like corey hoekstra come to play on the same team with special olympians like cody. >> we feel like we're in one big family. >> reporter: this is cody's ninth year at the special olympics. with his parents' encouragement, he took up sports early on. >> my dad was my soccer coach in second grade. >> reporter: and it changed his life. >> what i love about soccer is i just prefer to keep moving around on my feet and also make a friend and everytng that i can actually relate with. >> reporter: corey was also young when she started volunteering. >> because i started so young, like i don't really see the difference between some of the athletes with disabilities and people without. >> reporter: and this world where differences don't matter is the world eunice shriver hoped for a half century ago. congratulations to special olympics at 50. we appreciate you spending part of your evening with us. that is "nightly news" for this friday night.
i'm lester holt. for all of us at nbc news, thanks for watching, and good night. right in and out at 6:00. new video into the news room. that's lake ta hoe. in smoke. the fire more than 100 miles away putting a damper on summer travel. >> it is one hot job market. the local county attracts moren the state. first. the repeated acts of disrespect by the current ipa are reprehensible. >> one picture. is refuelling a battle. san jose police vs. the independent auditor. the news at 6:00 starts now. good evening. thanks for being with us on friday. >> he is the man who is supposed to police the san jose police. today the officers are calling
for him to resign or be fired. the police union says the city independent police auditor is anything but indpen. he even took part in an antipolice rally. we broke the story on twitter this morning. live. the auditor is denying the accusations. >> that's right. things have been building for white a while. today emotions finally erupted. the police yin was already on edge after complained last week the auditor didn't take action when a jail inmate allegedly threatened to shoot police. now the idea the auditor took place in an antipolice event was the last straw. >> reporter: it was a police promoted numerous officers today. there was a cloud over the department celebration. today the police officers union coem