tv CBS Evening News With Norah O Donnell CBS February 19, 2020 3:12am-3:43am PST
and with china on virtual lock down, how the coronavirus is now hurting american businesses. flash flooding alert. with mississippi still underwater, new concerns tonight across the southeast. the warnings issued across four states with more heavy rain in the forecast. >> crash into the wall, into the air! >> o'donnell: a fiery crash. the health update just coming in tonight on the driver in that dangerous crash at dayton. how he survived thanks to the technology in his car. filing for bankruptcy. facing a barrage of sex abuse lawsuits, the boy scouts filed for chapter 11. what the decision means for the victims and for the future of scouting. fixing home insecurity. the change ring says it's making to your home security cameras to keep people from gaining access to your home. and salute to a superhero. preschoolers show their support for a classmate who is for a classmate who is determined to conquer one of the most dangerous threats of all.
>> this is the "cbs evening news" with norah o'donnell reporting from the nation's capital. >> o'donnell: good evening and thank you so much for joining us. we're going to begin tonight with breaking news. president trump says he is commuting the prison sentence of rod blagojevich, freeing the former illinois governor and "apprentice" contestant from federal prison. blagojevich was convicted in 2011 for trying to sell barack obama's senate seat to the highest bidder. and the president isn't stopping there. he's also pardoning bernard kerik, whose spectacular fall from new york city police commissioner and cabinet nominee ended in prison time for tax fraud and other crimes. all in all, the president issued four commutations and seven pardons, including one for 1980's junk bond king michael milken. weijia jiang reports tonight from the white house. >> rod, you're fired. >> reporter: former illinois governor rod blagojevich lost "celebrity apprentice" but won
his freedom back today when president trump commuted his 14- year prison sentence. >> it was a tremendously powerful, ridiculous sentence in my opinion. >> reporter: the president noted he had seen blagojevich's wife argue for his release on fox news. he was found guilty of trying sell an appointment to barack obama's senate seat after he became president. blagojevich bragged about it in a notorious wiretapped conversation. >> i've got this thing, and it's ( bleep ) golden. >> reporter: the president also pardoned bernie kerik, the former commissioner of the n.y.p.d. and a frequent mar-a- lago guest who served prison time for tax fraud. also insider trader michael milken, known as the "junk bond king" of the 1980s. at the white house, n.f.l. legends celebrated edward debartolo for making the list, a former owner of the san francisco 49ers. >> i take my hat off to donald trump for what he did. >> reporter: not on the pardon
list today, roger stone, who will be sentenced thursday, and former national security adviser mike flynn, who has asked to withdraw his guilty plea. >> i think roger stone has been treated unfairly. i think general flynn has been treated very unfairly. >> reporter: mr. trump continued to tweet about the stone case today against the wishes of his attorney general bill barr. >> o'donnell: and weijia joins us now from the white house. so weijia, does what happened today foreshadow the possibility of pardons for stone, flynn, or former campaign manager paul manafort? >> reporter: well, president trump said today that he had not given any thought to pardoning those friends-turned felons, but clearly stone's case is on his mind given he tweeted that the judge should grant stone a new iaial. we also know the president is feeling emboldened post- impeachment, and he often rewards those who have been loyal to him, which includes all the men you just named. gorah? >> o'donnell: all right, weijia, w ank you. a new candidate is set to make his debut on the presidential debate stge.
former new york city mayor mike bloomberg's latest showing in a national poll has him in second him in second place behind bernie sanders. that puts him over the top, qualifying him to meet rivals head-on at tomorrow's democratic debate in nevada. nikole killion has more on bloomberg's surge. >> reporter: he's not competing n nevada, but bloomberg will be on the debate state here against five rivals who have been debating for months. bloomberg hasn't debated since a ran for a third term as new york city's mayor in 2009. >> we have brought people together. >> reporter: he's been away from the campaign trail preparing for ae attacks he'll likely face from the other candidates. to thank you.thank you. >> >> reporter: elizabeth warren lost her voice, but made sure it was heard on twitter, posting, "the debate will give voters eager to defeat president trump a live demonstration of how we each take on an egomaniac billionaire." >> he could have just been the middle class kid who made good. >> reporter: bloomberg has spent $415 million of his own money on ads, and it's paying off.
in the super tuesday state of virginia, has now tied for the aad with bernie sanders. >> anybody here worth $60 billion, you can run for president, and you can buy the esrwaves. my friends, that is called oligarchy, not democracy. >> reporter: sanders the one the beat here in nevada has been engaged in a tit for at the battle with bloomberg. in nevada today bloomberg's campaign warned, the opposition research against the democratic socialist is damaging, perhaps g,en disqualifying. tonight the bloomberg campaign isn't saying what information it has that could be disqualifying and the sanders campaign isn't commenting, although aides have privately expressed concern that bloomberg could be their most formidable opponent. ?orah? >> o'donnell: all right, nikole, thank you. thnight the quarantine is over for some of the americans evacuated from china because of the coronavirus.
they're finally heading home. and we have this update. tses worldwide now top 75,000. more than 2,000 people have died. carter evans has more on today's developments. >> reporter: today hundreds of american evacuees from china boarded buses on military bases in both northern and southern california after an exhausting two weeks in federal quarantine. reporter: but hundreds more >> reporter: but hundreds more remain in quarantine around the country, like jerri serrati- goldman and her husband carl, who were on the "diamond princess" docked in japan. >> he woke up, burning up. >> reporter: carl was taken to the hospital in omaha after developing a fever during evacuation. he now has the virus. >> the care where we are is supposed to be top in the country, so i'm not in fear at all that he's not going to have a full recovery from this. >> reporter: and now the scramble is on the track passengers from the cruise ship "westerdam."
when it docked last week in cambodia, everyone was given the all clear and a gracious welcome by the country's prime minister, but over the weekend an american woman who had been a passenger tested positive for the virus. beyond the human toll is a growing concern about a hit to the global marketplace. 47,000 u.s. companies depend on supplies from the affected regions of china. aside from manufacturing, tourism in the u.s. will also take a hit. >> we get approximately three million chinese visitors every year. they're not coming. and they spend a lot, almost $7,000 per chinese person per trip. >> reporter: after the u.s., china is the world's second largest economy and some analysts believe the coronavirus has already caused the country's gross domestic product to fall by 1%. here at travis air force base, the next round of evacuees is set to be released on thursday. norah. >> o'donnell: all right, carter. thank you. tonight flood watches and warnings are posted across the south and central u.s. as
millions are under states of emergency in mississippi and alabama. more than 1,000 homes and isinesses are flooded in the jackson, mississippi, area. omar villafranca is there and reports floodwater is slowly receding, but frustration is rising. >> reporter: in the hardest-hit neighborhoods, police won't allow residents back into their homes because the water is still too high. janet harris and her three children evacuated on friday. what were you able to grab? >> nothing. >> reporter: nothing? >> just a little few items for my kids, because the room was limited. >> reporter: flood levels are down around jackson, mississippi, but the storms have not proved out. since january, jackson has been hit by 19.9 inches of rain. n.at's a foot more than the average. >> it is the next to last house on the right. >> reporter: sarah kimmel can see her home of 28 years just down the street surrounded by water, and she can't get close enough to check it out. do you know for a fact that water went inside your place?
>> i just know that it's in the garage for sure. >> reporter: okay. >> and hopefully it's not over this new flooring that's stored there. >> reporter: there is rain in the forecast today, wednesday and thursday, which could cause some flash flooding. as for the water in this neighborhood, they're not expecting it to go down significantly until at least friday. norah. >> o'donnell: just incredible to look at that, omar. thank you. nascar driver ryan newman is awake and able to speak tonight following that terrifying crash at the daytona 500 monday. newman's life was likely saved by safety innovations put in place after dale earnhardt, sr., was killed during the last lap at daytona 19 years ago today. rere's manuel bojorquez. >> ryan newman off turn four for the final time. >> reporter: the heart-stopping crash happened seconds away from the finish line. >> crash into the wall, into the air! >> reporter: ryan newman's mustang flipped over several times before taking a direct hit, before landing on its roof and bursting into flames.
>> the a.m.r. safety team is there quickly to attend to ryan newman. >> reporter: it took two hours for shocked fans to find out newman, who won daytona in 2008, suffered only non-life- threatening injuries. >> they want to be safe. >> reporter: ken willis is a sports columnist for the "daytona beach news journal." >> it has been a long time since we've seen a race car driver in nascar hauled away from an accident. >> reporter: it was 19 years ago today that dale earnhardt, sr., died during a final-lap crash at daytona. and changes to the sport followed soon after. the racetrack walls are now designed to help absorb impact. the driver's one-piece seat belts minimize head and neck injury risk, and the car's roll cage is built to maintain its integrity and protect the driver's head, though in newman's case, the roll cage appears to have caved. willis believes speed restrictions keep racers too clustered. >> odds are you're going to have more wrecks like, this and the more wrecks you have like this, t.oner or later somebody is
>> reporter bound to get hurt. >> reporter: newman has survived multiple crashes in the past, including a previous one here at daytona, and he's been an advocate for stronger safety measures. in the lead and close to winning in the lead and close to winning his second daytona title. norah. >> o'donnell: wow. so fortunate to be alive. manny, thank you. today the boy scouts of america, one of the biggest youth organizations in the country, filed for bankruptcy protection. the scouts face an onslaught of lawsuits from men who claim they were sexually abused, sometimes going back decades, by scout masters and err leaders. errol barnett on the secret files that alleged victims want public. >> reporter: declaring bankruptcy allows the boy scouts to continue operations while raising a compensation fund that could top $1 billion to pay the victims of sexual abuse. >> i just couldn't deal with it. i started drinking. >> reporter: ralph morse is one of them. he says he was mowed by a respected scout leader when he was 11.
>> i mean, he's pushing on my backside and he's reaching around in the front and groping me. >> reporter: in an apologetic letter, the b.s.a. says it encourages victims to come m,rward and file claim, but under the structure of this bankruptcy, there is a deadline and a limit to payments. b.s.a. says its 261 local liuncils are not filing for chapter 11, which one estimate suggests make up 70% of its assets. >> i think what ralph and other abuse survivors want now is accountability. >> reporter: michael pfau represents morse and approximately 300 other victims. he says the scope of the abuse in the revered organization's history is immense. >> we know there are thousands of perpetrators in scouts, and that's because the scouts kept files, and they kept these files quiet. >> reporter: errol barnett, cbs news, new york. >> o'donnell: today a new york jury began deliberating harvey weinstein's fate. the movie mogul is charged with rape and sexual assault.
if convicted he could face the rest of his life in prison. weinstein's lawyers insist all of his encounters were consensual. omliberations resume tomorrow. tonight a top u.n. official is calling the humanitarian catastrophe unfolding in syria onruel beyond belief." since december, 900,000 civilians have been forced to flee syrian and russian bombs in the northwest and most of them are women and children. holly williams on what they have been forced to endure. >> reporter: this is the war that never ends. nine years of terror, and in idlib they still live mpotently as theirently, as own government their own government bombs them out of their homes. there are more than three million people crammed into syria's last major rebel stronghold. the regime's latest offensive, backed by its ally russia, has forced hundreds of thousands of them to flee for their lives and left people homeless in the middle of a bitter winter.
"i am begging for a place to dselter my kids," says this man. "the bomb didn't kill them, and i don't want them to die of the cold." the children of idlib have grown up in a time of bloodshed. they don't know what it means to feel safe. this video apparently shows a father trying to protect his three-year-old daughter from the reality of war. she thinks the bombs and mortars are part of a game. if only that were true. if only the last nine years were a nightmare and syria could wake up. holly williams, cbs news, istanbul. >> o'donnell: it's hard to look away from those pictures. there is still much more news ahead on tonight's "cbs evening news." disturbing new details in the case of a woman accused of trying to steal a newborn baby, including how a cupcake tainted with drugs played a role in the plot. amazon's ring security system
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could get her a baby girl in the next five weeks. then came the cupcake plot. the victim says she was drugged after eating a cupcake offered by the suspect, then called 911. late today chilling words from the victim. >> i don't like being at home. i'm not sleeping. i'm not eating. i'm terrified she's going to get back out. like, this is my kids. this is my house. she violated that. she violated my safety. she tried to kidnap my daughter. >> reporter: in court parker maintained her innocence. jamie yuccas, cbs news, los angeles. >> o'donnell: amazon's home security system ring is tightening its privacy and security settings following a wave of camera hacks. ring says customers will have to use a second layer of verification known as two-factor authentication when logging into the system. customers will receive a one- time code through e-mail or text do access cameras and unlock doors. ll right..
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>> o'donnell: tonight we can all learn a lesson from a brave preschooler and her classmates in new jersey. nikki battiste on the power of friendship. >> reporter: who's your hero? >> riley. >> reporter: five-year-old riley e-icino's tiny classroom chair has been empty since she was diagnosed with leukemia last summer. >> my heart dropped. >> reporter: riley's mother kaylie manger says the hospital stays and chemo have been a test of strength for her feisty daughter. >> she was just saying, "i wish my bones weren't sick anymore." she just fell on the floor, and i hugged her and said, "we're going to get through it." >> reporter: to show their support, riley's pre-k classmates in new jersey have special dress up day, wearing superhero costume, wild hair, and pajamas. they're also helping to raise money for the leukemia and ocmphoma society. >> riley! >> say hi. >> reporter: recently riley
surprised her classmates, and the impact she had on them was something to behold. >> you're our hero. >> it was... we have missed her so much. >> reporter: riley is now in remission but still receiving bi-weekly chemo treatments. what did you think when you walked in and saw all of them? >> crazy. >> reporter: it was crazy. led by their very own brave warrior, this community fights on. >> you know, when you have that kind of support when you're going through such a hard time, it's priceless. >> reporter: nikki battiste, cbs news, north haledon, new jersey. >> o'donnell: riley, you're our superhero, too. we'll be right back. in fact, tremfya® was proven superior to humira® in providing significantly clearer skin. tremfya® may increase your risk of infections and lower your ability to fight them.
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and if you can't watch us live, don't forget to set your d.v.r. so you can watch us later. and this is tonight's "cbs this is "the cbs overnight news." >> we've got a lot to tell you about this morning, starting with the spiraling price of booze, especially you're sitting at a bar. tony kwukt econducted his own i investigation and found out going out for a drink has never been more expensive. >> reporter: federal data shows a 57% spike in the cost of drinks at bars and restaurants. what is driving these costs?
we searched for answers. if you like to drink, there's always an occasion. why are you drinking? >> it's her 21st birthday. >> having some drinks with friends allows you to relax. >> reporter: but these days, the bill can be sobering. >> we just spent $52 on a couple drinks. it's pretty expensive. >> reporter: to find out why, we tracked your drink's journey, starting on the northern plains. every alcoholic beverages on the planet, starts on a farm. grain from these fields could be the source of your next pint of beer or glass of whisky. >> welcome to the end of the world. >> reporter: doyle lance's family has been farming barrelly for more than a century. >> give it a big shove. >> reporter: this is what it's all about? >> what it's all about. no barley, no beer. >> reporter: how much do you
make a beer? >> about a penny a beer. >> reporter: all of this for a penny a beer. >> reporter: that's about the same as what his grandfather made. >> i'm pretty sure if the cost of your alcohol is going up, it's not in north dakota so much. how about the distillers, while many believe their cans are the coldest, it's hard to find anyone calling themselves the cheapest. we found the makers of america's alcohol actually have not hiked their prices. at least not more than inflation. the proof is in a store like this, where people buy liquor for home. the price you pay for the same drink at a bar or restaurant, up 63%. and you can't blame the people that sell the alcohol to the bars and restaurants, either.