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tv   NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt  NBC  December 21, 2019 2:07am-2:38am PST

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op-ed, demanding his removal and calling out his evangelical supporters how the president is firing back. nbc news investigates the company promising revolutionary help for children with everything from adhd to autism. the cost, thousands of dollars. some families making gofundme pages and taking out loans but does it work what we found. and a record-breaking holiday rush is on but a double threat of storms impacting travel >> announcer: this is "nbc nightly news" with lester holt good evening there has been a stunning and tragic twist in the disappearance of a texas mom and her newborn daughter heidi broussard found dead overnight, her 3-week-old bab alive and well and tonight, the arrest of one of her long time friends on kidnapping charges has shocked their austin community as police begin unraveling a sordid mystery. our sam brock is there tonight with late breaking details >> reporter: texas rangers and fbi agents
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flooding the home overnight of a woman wh was once heidi broussard's close friend authorities say say they discovered broussard's body in the trunk of a car her baby margot was safe inside the house. >> we had all prayed we would be able to find heidi alive we are thankful that through combined efforts here we were able to recover baby margot >> reporter: magen fieramusca, also known as maygen humphrey, now charged with two counts of kidnapping and tampering with a corpse this photo of the old friends together this summer a sharp contrast to humphrey in court today caressa is one of broussard's closest friends. >> i was disgusted i was heartbroken. i was shocked. i didn't expect this >> reporter: how many times this week have you talked with the suspect? >> every day she was concerned for heidi's well being but it was probably every two to three hours. >> reporter: friends say humphrey told them she was pregnant she had an online baby
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registry listing a due date the same time as heidi broussard's. when heidi was giving birth, where was the suspect? >> in the room with he and my mother. >> reporter: another mutual friend, rachel west spoke to nbc news yesterday. today, she said, you want to talk about a plot twist, i've been in contact with magen the whole week and she played it off perfectly. until last night the investigation was focused 160 miles away in the apartment complex were heidi broussard lived with her boyfriend shane carey and her two children she was last seen more than a week ago. >> a lead was generated that created a location of interest in the houston area. >> reporter: authorities say the investigation continues in this still-mysterious case of a mother now deceased her baby spared. lester, we just got word from authorities the cause of death in this case, strangulation. i spoke this morning with heidi's mother who told me she feels shocked and betrayed, lester >> what a stunning
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turn of events there sam brock, thank you another story we're following this evening. the scare at sea two carnival cruise ships caught on camera colliding off mexico, causing significant damage and multiple injuries as passengers looked on in horror. we get more from nbc's kerry sanders. >> the windows were shattered. the boat was set in. >> reporter: the carnival cruise ship "glory" was coming into port in cozumel, mexico, when it smashed into the carnival "legend." >> oh, my gosh, this is bad >> reporter: mattie morris was on the upper deck, watching >> there was no warning from the captain, no warning from anybody >> reporter: carnival said six passengers on the "glory" sought treatment in the ship's infirmary >> someone could have died >> reporter: the 110,000-ton "legend" was tied to the dock when the 80,000-ton "glory" wa reportedly buffeted by high winds and higher than normal chop.
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carnival isn't confirming the reason but says "we are assessing the damage but there are no issues that impact the sea worthiness of either ship. cruise ship disasters are uncommon but they do happen. earlier this year, a ship crashed into a dock in venice in 2012, a ship hit a reef and capsized at this point carnival says next week's passengers can stick with their plans the "legend" and the "glory" while damaged will keep to their current christmas week cruise schedules lester >> kerry sanders, thanks tonight the busy holiday rush is on and it's set to be a record breaker over 115 million people expected to travel this year, mostly by car according to triple a. the worst day to drive, the day after christmas, when drive times could double in major cities some 7 million will fly, the most in 16 years. and we're tracking a double storm threat that could impact your holiday travel meteorologist dylan dreyer is here dylan, what are you looking at >> lester, we're watching a storm in the gulf and we're also watching one out west the one in the gulf
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will likely bring heavier rain to the southeast especially saturday night into sunday that could cause some airport delays out west, the best chance for delays would be in the san francisco area as that heavy rain moves onshore. once we go into next week we'll see a really nice warm-up. in fact the eastern half of the country is definitely going to be above freezing and we'll even see temperatures well above average. so that's good news if you've been waiting for a warm-up. not so good, lester, if you've been wanting a white christmas. >> a lot of folks tracking that forecast, dylan, thanks terrifying moments today at a government building in north carolina a city employe opening fire, killing a co-worker and injuring two others including an officer before being killed by police nbc's gabe gutierrez has more >> reporter: it was just before 7:00 a.m. when police responded to this government building in winston-salem, north carolina >> suspect's now in the lobby, still has two guns in his hands. >> reporter: the urgent response unfolding over police radio. >> units get your helmets, the
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shooter -- we got one down >> reporter: one officer shot, others called for backup. >> activate all s.w.a.t., i can't do it activate all s.w.a.t >> reporter: police identify the gunman as sanitation worker steven haizlip he was shot dead in the gun fight. investigators say he killed another employee who he had targeted the two had fought the day before, police said >> these two gentlemen had a long standing dislike for each other. the source of that dislike, i'm not -- i don't have at this time >> reporter: one employee says he was on his way to work when he heard the shots and ran for his life >> shocking, sad, this time of the year the sanitation workers affected by this the people that work here that's affected by this. >> reporter: in what police call collateral damage, another worker was wounded. tonight, authorities say that person and the injured officer are expected to recover. gabe gutierrez, nbc news new developments
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tonight in a story we've been following after this deadly shooting caught on body cam in ft. worth, texas. former officer aaron dean has now been charged with murder. dean resigned in october after killin atatiana jefferson who had been baby-sitting her nephew inside when dean was conducting a welfare check. police say dean failed to identify himself as the officer began firing through the window and an update on something that happened before the army/navy game that raised a lot of eyebrows military investigators conducting an internal investigation concluded that cadets and midshipmen were not flashing a racist hand symbol on live tv but were merely playin a, quote, sophomoric game the gestures look similar to symbols appropriated by white supremacists now to new fallout from the impeachment vote president trump facing hars criticism from a surprising source, an evangelical magazine peter alexander reports. >> reporter: just days before christmas, the surprising and stinging judgment of the president from
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"christianity today," a leading evangelical publication. the editor calling for president trump to be removed from office, saying the facts are unambiguous, arguing the president tried to coerce a foreign leader to harass and discredit joe biden, insisting his conduct is not only a violation of the constitution, but profoundly immoral >> what we're talking about now is someone who is morally abusive in a dangerous way and the scales don't work anymore it's time for him to leave the house, is what my view is. >> reporter: but the president, who won 80% of the evangelical vote i 2016, firing back on twitter, dismissing "christianity today" as a far left magazine, adding, no president has ever done what i have done for evangelicals or religion itself. "christianity today" was founded by the late reverend billy graham but his son franklin saying his father would not agree with the opinion piece, accusing the magazine of being used by the left and revealing billy graham voted for president
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trump because he believed he was the man for this hour in history and our nation >> peter, a few days after speaker pelosi was leading the vote to impeach the president, today she sent him an invitation >> reporter: that's right, she invited him to deliver the state of the union on february 4th he has accepted. what's not clear is whether we'll be in the middle of an impeachment trial because pelosi has still not sent over to the senate those articles of impeachment. >> peter, thank you very much. tonight the wife of a u.s. diplomat has been charged in a crash that left a young man dead in the uk the charges coming after she left that country, claiming diplomatic immunity. nbc's andrea mitchell now on the new fight over whether she'll be extradited >> reporter: the emotional response when 19-year-old harry dunn's parents learned the news [ crying ] >> i would never have rested without being able to see her face justice. >> reporter: the family overcome at word that the british prosecutor is charging
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the american woman they hol responsible for their son's death because of dangerous driving. >> justice >> reporter: the teenager on his motorcycle hit head-on last august by an suv driven by anne sacoolas, the wife of an american diplomat through her attorney, sacoolas has acknowledged driving the wrong way and is now back in the u.s. her lawyer saying today sacoolas is devastated by this tragic accident and has cooperated fully with the investigation and accepted responsibility but the state department says she has diplomatic immunity and will not be returning to england to stand trial. even president trump got involved at prime minister boris johnson's request. inviting the dunns and sacoolas to the white house for a surprise meeting two months ago. harry's parents refused to see her >> i offered to bring the person in question in and they weren't ready for it >> we made it very clear that that needs
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to be on our terms, on uk soil. >> reporter: legal experts in both countries say that won't happen, as long as she claims her diplomatic immunity. in a family traged that has divided the closest of allies, lester >> andrea mitchell in washington, thank you. now to a story about parents desperate to find help for their children with adhd, autism, or other behavioral problems a company growing nationwide promises results. but it's expensive and some scientists are skeptical. kate snow has this nbc news investigation >> four, five, six >> reporter: three times a week 6-year-old isaac lopez works with his coach, wearing special sensory gear >> on his arm and leg isaac is wearing shakers. he has a metronome playing, a peppermint scent, and glasses >> reporter: isaac is bright but he also has violent temper tantrums >> i mean, i didn't know what to do. i cried all the time >> reporter: friends told his mom patty about brain balance in a strip mall in
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detroit. >> seven months in, has there been any change in him? >> it's been incredible >> so cool >> reporter: the daily tantrums are gone, they say he's engaging more with other kids. >> it's a miracle. >> reporter: it's what brain balance advertises the company has more than 100 locations nationwide and promotes lucrative franchise opportunities. they promise families help for conditions from adhd to learning disorders to autism. the average cost, more than $10,000 for a typical six-month program. to pay that bill, many families have starte gofundme pages and brain balance offers loans. vice president rebecca jackson trained as a chiropractor >> it's all about getting everything to connect and communicate. >> reporter: brain balance is largely built on the idea that behavior problems are linked to one side of the child's brain is undeveloped isaac's left foot is bare to stimulate what brain balance says is his weaker right hemisphere
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>> we're going to wake up lots of things in one region we might be targeting that right region of the brain and getting that region to talk and communicate with other parts. >> it did not work for our family >> reporter: the awads had high hopes brain balance would help their son malik who has adhd >> this could be it for us, right? for him. >> reporter: why does it make you upset? >> because of everything he needs. >> reporter: malik did exercises at the center and at home >> i do think initially that we saw some improvement he knew how much we spent on it. he was trying really hard >> reporter: six months later do you feel like it was money well spent >> no. >> this is not mainstream science >> reporter: dr. jill emanuel is a psychologist with the child mind institute we asked her and seven other scientists to review brain balance's claims on their website. all were skeptical >> it's overly simplistic to say that weaknesses on one side or the other cause the symptoms o these disorders. >> reporter: brain balance acknowledges there are no large
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scale scientific studies with proper control groups proving the treatment works, but says more research is coming >> we've spoken with other experts, with doctors, medical doctors, who are very skeptical. they think you've got a program that is not science-based. >> do you know, on average it takes 17 years for research to become implemented in mainstream practice. if you have a child that's struggled, 17 years is a long time to wait. >> reporter: is it ethical to be treating kids in the interim before there is established research >> what we're doing, there aren't risks so it's not a medication with side effects. >> if they have this theory, find the evidence, show us that it works and then create the business. they've done it the opposite way >> reporter: the awads say malik is now doing well with targeted activities and the right dose of medication at a fraction of the cost of brain balance kate snow, nbc news, dallas >> if you would like to read up a bit more on brain balance and similar companies, we invite you to go to ahead as we
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continue here on "nightly news," the queen's husband prince philip hospitalized days before christmas. we'll have the latest on his condition also more bad news for boeing we'll tell you how their starliner spaceship was launched into the wrong orbit plus christmas wishes santa tells me what people really want and you won't find it under any tree
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next tonight, the queen's husband, prince philip, hospitalized just days before the holidays. here is keir simmons now with late details. >> reporter: prince philip spending the night in the hospital, raising fresh concerns about the 98-year-old's health buckingham palace announcing he did not travel by ambulance for his planned visit, but walked into the hospital on his own power. the palace says he was admitted for a preexisting admission and that the admission is a precautionary measure on the advice of his royal highness' doctor the queen keeping to her schedule today, traveling by train to th estate where she
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spends christmas doctors estimate prince philip will be in the hospital for a few days, hopefully discharged in time to spend christmas with his wife, the queen, lester >> keir simmons, thanks when we come back, another bad day for boeing how their big launch went into the wrong orbit.
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today another major setback for boeing which is still struggling to get its grounded 737 max planes cleared to fly after two major crashes. now today, during a critical flight test, its new spaceshi failed to reach its proper orbit tom costello has details. >> and liftoff the rise of starliner and a new era of human space flight >> reporter: this was the predawn launch boeing was hoping would put a year of bad headlines behind it instead, a major disappointment >> burn was scheduled to take place 31 minutes after launch but didn't happen on schedule >> reporter: an error with the mission timing clock caused the uncrewed spaceship
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to burn too much fuel, forcing it into the wrong orbit. >> so we did have obviously some challenges today >> reporter: that meant no docking with the space station and no delivery of food, clothing, and holida presents for the station crew both boeing and spacex have contracts to soon carry american astronauts on american rockets back to space for the first time in nearly nine years. the good news, the on-board dummy rosie did gather critical data on the g-forces those astronauts will face the plan now, bring starliner safely back to earth early sunday morning. tom costello, nbc news at the kennedy space center up next, one of my most exclusive interviews of all, or close to it. i speak to santa about the true meaning of christmas.
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finally tonight, for many of us as kids it was the most important two minutes of our young lives, sitting on santa's knee and filling out our wishes as i found out recently, it's one christmas tradition still very much alive. >> reporter: a lot comes with wearing that red suit. >> don't disillusion anybody. >> reporter: that you literally carry once >> you've got a few days left to think about it, right? >> reporter: hopes and our secrets. >> i didn't share it >> merry christmas >> reporter: in this digital age, you can facetime santa for a price. but don't you remember the excitement, nervous anticipation of meeting the big guy face-to-face, ready to blurt out "i want a" -- >> a dinosaur. >> reporter: give me your best dinosaur sound. >> roar! >> like, roar! like that? >> reporter: in new york's christmas-themed bryant park, i found one on one moments with santa are still
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in demand, where the youngest st. nick ambassadors happily share the mysteries of mr. claus. how does he get down the chimney? >> he usually parks his sleigh on top of the roof and then he just goes down >> reporter: michael and his sister antoinette had their lists committed to memory >> madden 20, like the football game. >> reporter: are you a little nervous >> kind of >> reporter: you look like you're going to forget what you want to say oh, the pressure and then the moment. >> a nerf gun, a camera >> reporter: did you remember everything on your list? >> yes >> no. >> reporter: no worries. he's got you covered, kids >> whatever people ask for, the basic thing they really want is happiness. and they think those things will give them happiness. and of course it's an illusion because happiness must eventually come from within >> and that, santa explained to me, is the true meaning of christmas. i'll work on that dinosaur voice that's "nightly news." i'm lester holt.
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thank you for watching, everyone have a good night. ♪ rockin' around the christmas tree ♪ ♪ at the christmas party hop ♪ mistletoe hung where you can see ♪ ♪ every couple tries to stop
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♪ you will get a sentimental feeling when you hear ♪ ♪ voices singing, let's be jolly ♪ ♪ deck the halls with boughs of holly ♪ ♪ rockin' around the christmas tree ♪ ♪ have a happy holiday ♪ everyone dancin' merrily ♪ in the new old-fashioned way ♪ ♪ you will get a sentimental feeling when you hear ♪ ♪ voices singing, let's be jolly ♪ ♪ deck the halls with boughs of holly ♪ ♪ rockin' around the christmas tree ♪ ♪ have a happy holiday
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♪ everyone dancin' merrily ♪ in the new old-fashioned way ♪ [cheers and applause] be wide welcome to "the kelly clarkson show," everybody! all right, it's it's another holiday extravaganza. who requested "rocking around the christmas tree today? i am assuming, sir, that your name is matt. how did i know? well, explain, what's happening? >> i requested this song because i th


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