tv CBS Evening News With Norah O Donnell CBS December 15, 2021 3:30pm-4:00pm PST
armadillos would be endangered but i guess it depends on which species. >> you saw plenty of them. cbs evening news >> o'donnell: tonight, omicron spreads rapidly across america. new covid cases up nearly 50% since last month as we're just 10 days away from the christmas holiday when tens of millions are expected to travel. the crisis on college campuses: cornell and princeton cancelling in-person classes as other schools across the country say they'll now require booster shots and reinstate mask mandates. plus, the city health commissioner urging people to cancel holiday gatherings. another dangerous december storm. nearly 100 million americans are under weather alerts, including high winds, the tornado threat tonight. touring the disaster zone: president biden visits the damage in kentucky. >> i promise you, you're going
to heal. you're going to recover. you're going to rebuild. you're going to be stronger. >> o'donnell: the fed's big decision: what it means for your pocketbook amid rising inflation. guilty plea: former minneapolis police officer derek chauvin admits to violating george floyd's civil rights. j.f.k. revelations from 1,500 classified files. breaking barriers: a woman set to run the n.y.p.d., the nation's largest police department, for the first time. a covid miracle. how one woman beat the odds and lived to tell her story. and the santa claus girls bringing cheer to children in need. this is the "cbs evening news" with norah o'donnell, reporting from the nation's capital.
>> o'donnell: good evening, and thank you for joining us. tonight, we're following a concerning surge in coronavirus cases across the country, leaving colleges and businesses to close or reinstate covid measures. several large schools are and returning to remote introduction. others have shutting down campus and cancelling all student dominant strain.udinghe bu etxper warn the omicron spread is likely outpacing the nation's ability to track it. today, we heard from the c.d.c. director who warned that early data suggests omicron cases are more contagious than delta. the latest wave threatens to upend holiday plans for the second year in a row with just over a week before criticize. cbs' nikki battiste joins us now. good evening, nikki. >> reporter: norah, good evening. as business and colleges urgently implement plans to combat omicron, dr. anthony fauci says right now there is no need to develop a vaccine specific to omicron because
studies show a booster provide considerable protection. today, the white house made it clear: to fight omicron, americans need a booster shot. >> our booster vaccine regimens work against omicron. at this point, there is no need for a variant-specific booster. >> reporter: just 30% of fully vaccinated adults have a booster. >> it is a necessity. >> reporter: to emphasize the need for that extra shot, new jersey declared today "booster day," one year after the first vaccines were administered. omicron is surging there and in new york, making up 13% of cases, compared to 3% nationwide. the variant is now reported in 36 states, washington, d.c., and puerto rico. >> this is a roll of the dice. you don't know for sure that you're going to just slide right through it without any problem. we also know that prior infection with covid is not
holding up at all to omicron. >> reporter: as omicron spreads nationwide, california is reinstating an indoor mask mandate, regardless of vaccination status, beginning today. and philadelphia's health commissioner is urging residents to cancel holiday gatherings with friends and family. college campuses are cracking down, too. cornell university's campus is it nearly fully vaccinated but as an outbreak of more than 1100 covid cases, many likely from omicron. n.y.u. has canceled all in-person gatherings. princeton has made all exams remote and has encouraged students to travel home for the holidays as soon as as possible. what do you predict january might look like? >> it's hard to imagine we wouldn't get to over a million new cases a day, which is a staggering number. >> reporter: tonight, apple has temporarily closed stores in miami and annapolis, maryland, because of the rise in covid
cases. here in new york city, average daily cases in the past two weeks are up 109%, forcing some broadway shows to shut down yet again. norah. >> o'donnell: yeah, it's alarming hearing about all those shutdowns. all right, nikki battiste, thank you. well, tonight, nearly 100 million americans are under weather alerts as another powerful storm system is moving across the great plains and midwest and is threatening to bring strong winds, heavy rain, and another chance of tornadoes. from colado looked apocalyptcads as the front moved through. through, like a wall of wind. that's how the man who recorded this video described the storm front as it blew into boulder and knocked down dres in denver. >> the whole house shook. >> reporter: it became a full-blown, 100-mile-per-hour wind storm. strong winds whipped up flames
in the high planes of the oklahoma panhandle. it's all part of this week's massive storm that pounded drought-stricken california with torrential rain and flooding, sweeping cars down the l.a. river, and dumping several feet of snow on the sierra nevada. carter evans, cbs news. >> o'donnell: well, now for what lies ahead, cbs boston's chief meteorologist eric fisher is here with the forecast. good evening, eric. >> good evening, norah. today is a day for the record books. when it comes to the weather in the middle of the country, we've had this widespread wind storm, the whole thing rocketing across the middle of the country tonight. let's take a look at some of those advisories, huge areas, high-wind warnings from new mexico to new york. and in the area we have had wind 2k3wu679s up to 100 miles per hour, places like russell, kansas, lamar, colorado. and tonight we're tracking more tornadoes. this is moving so fast, it's not just the wind in the storms. the storms themselves in this line that's moving across iowa at 80o 100 miles perur with
there are more tornado w ther in monthdown i r of december in minnesota. here's why-- we have had record warms. records set in places like des moines, way into the 70s. omaha, nebraska, way in the 70s as well. all of this will continue to move rapidly to the northeast. behind it, we're talking a big drop in temperature. norah, it will feel very much like winter and this nurm warmth will head into the day on thursday. >> o'donnell: we're also guessing breaking news about the tornado that devastated the state of kentucky. the national weather service said today, yup, it was an e-4, with winds up to 190 miles per hour. that is the only tornado of that magnitude ever recorded in the month of december in that state. president biden surveyed the damage today, meeting with survivors, and cbs' lilia luciano is there. good evening, lilia. >> reporter: good evening,
norah. president biden said natural disasters have cost the country nearly $100 billion this year alone. and this is the fifth time since taking office that he's been called on to comfort families in a disaster zone. president biden made his after o outbreak left at least 71 people dead and more than 100 missing across the state. as the president walked among the ruins, he stopped and shook hands with angie wilson, who was sifting through her mother's damaged office building, looking for the only family photo of her grandfather. >> he wanted to know how we felt about the entire situation. >> reporter: the president then traveled here to dawson springs, where he praised the relief efforts, promising more federal resources and money. >> the government's going to cover 100% of the cost, 100% of the cost for the first 30 days, for all the emergency work from clearing everything to every single cost. >> reporter: pat and fill abruise lost their sister-in-law
and their home. they say they hope the president keeps his word to rebuild their town. >> this town is our lives. help the ones that need it. >> help the ones that really need it. >> reporter: more than 1,000 homes were damaged or destroyed across kentucky, leaving thousands homeless. >> we were laying right here. >> reporter: including bete and andy hernandez, who lost everything. >> i thought we were going to die because the house was vibrating. the noise, i have never heard anything like that in my life. >> reporter: they had lived in this home for seven years. now at 78, she says they'll have to start over with their daughter in arkansas. >> we love it here. we love that little house. and... but it'sle >>leorter: it's totaled.t' ep fema has deployed disaster response teams to help displaced victims find temporary housing. eight fema shelters remain open across the state. >> make no mistake about it, this is a very hard time for a lot of people and we know that emotional and spiritual care is going to be just as important as the different financial and nonfinancial resources coming to
communities. >> reporter: fema workers have been going door to door helping people sign up for aid, but in places like this, as you can see, there's not a whole lot of doors or homes still standing. so they set up a mobile registration unit for those people who don't have cell phones or access to internet. norah. >> o'donnell: lilia luciano, thank you for your excellent reporting these past several days. we want to turn now to newly released details in the kennedy assassination. more than 58 years after that tragic day in dallas, the government unsealed a trove of confidential documents, and they provide new revelations, but they also fall short of reswroflg all speculation about the case. here's cbs' jeff pegues. >> reporter: among the documents released today, is this c.i.a. cable saying that lee harvey oswald was in mexico city two months before the assassination, seek a visa for cuba on his way to the soviet union. the note, dated september of
1963, also say that oswald speaks in broken spanish. on the same day, oswald visited the cuban consulate in mexico city, three times asking an in-transit visa to cuba, with russia as the final destination. within hours of president presit kennedy's killing on november 23, police arrested oswald for the shooting. oswald himself was killed, shot in the stomach, we beg walked through police headquarters. for 58 years investigators and historians have been asking whether oswald acted alone. today, the national archives released some 1,500 documents, but another 10,000 remain a secret, fueling speculation that the government is stonewalling. philip shenon has studied the kennedy assassination. do you think the government is hiding something? >> i think they're hiding a lot of evidence to suggest incompetence, that the c.i.a. and the f.b.i. knew a lot about lee harvey oswald in the months before the assassination, and failed to act on that
information. >> reporter: congress ordered the release. president trump slowed it down amid concerns from the intelligence community. president biden has put off releasing more documents until next year. norah. >> o'donnell: jeff pegues, thank you. well, tonight, there's news that could impact your finances in the new year. the federal reserve signaled today that it may raise interest rates at least three times in 2022, hoping to ease the staggering inflation that has americans paying more for just about everything. cbs' ed o'keefe has more from the white house. >> reporter: new pressure on the business tonight as the me soon.>> the risk of higher in becoming entrenched has increased. >> reporter: while unemployment is dropping, prices up across the board, from groceries and gas to used cars and rent. also of concern for the economy: the winter covid surge. >> the rise in covid cases in
recent weeks, along with the emergence of the omicron variant, pose risks to the outlook. >> reporter: nearly 70% of americans disapprove of president biden's handling of inflation, and he knows it's a challenge. >> for working people and middle-class people, it's a big hit. it is-- the inflation, at least for the time being, is real. >> reporter: the higher prices are affecting almost everyone from coffee shop owner in new jersey... >> everything that we need-- coffee cups, coffee, sugar, milk-- everything is a lot more expensive. >> reporter: to consumers. >> it's scary. to me, with the corona, with the pandemic, with the new thing, virus, that goes with the inflation. so it's all brought in together. >> reporter: the federal reserve also signaled today it would raise interest rates next year for the first time since late 2018, another reason people should expect to pay more. >> if you're trying to borrow money to purchase a car, that could be a higher rate. if you're borrowing money to start a new business, that could be a higher rate.
most of us are either savers or borrowers, and fed moves impact us. >> reporter: also tonight, the last of those child tax credit payments are going out, unless congress extends them by passing the president's social spending plan. but cbs news has learned that bill is unlikely to be passed by christmas as senior democrats had hoped. norah. >> o'donnell: ed o'keefe, thank you. well, now, we have a story that offers hope to patients battling severe cases of covid. it's also a story of gratitude to healthcare workers who go above and beyond their duty to save lives. here's cbs' meg oliver. >> i'm so excited to see you. ( laughs ). >> reporter: we first met 35-year-old hillary lee from montana in early october. hillary. >> reporter: on a ventilator and ecmo machine, clinging to life. her mom, pam lee, praying for a miracle. >> i love you, too. >> reporter: do you remember when she tried to wave to you? >> oh, my gosh. >> yeah, that was-- that was--
that was tough. >> reporter: the young restaurant manager was about to get vaccinated when she got covid. >> my symptoms were so, so, so mild. i never would have thought i would have been in that position ever. >> reporter: but two weeks later, she was rushed to billings clinic. >> the fact that we had a bed for her was nothing short of a miracle. >> reporter: kelsey purdue was hillary's nurse. at the time, their i.c.u. was overflowing with covid patients, operating at close to 200% capacity. >> it's a huge sacrifice for us. people had to pick up extra shifts to be able to care for her. you know, i'm not a betting person, but i don't think she would have survived. >> reporter: how exhausting has this pandemic been for you? >> really wears on you. >> thank you. >> reporter: hillary's family was one of those families that i got really close nothat time. >> reporter: how many times were you there for her mom? >> i think, really, pam was more there for me. i don't think she would say that, but she would come and visit in the mornings, and... sorry. i didn't realize i would cry about this.
she was really administering to me. >> you're going home! >> reporter: the day after thanksgiving, doctors and nurses lined the corridor as hillary stepped out on her own. >> i knew one day we would walk out of the hospital. i just didn't know if it would be with or without her. this will be the best christmas ever. >> reporter: a christmas to cherish. meg oliver, cbs news. >> o'donnell: truly a christmas miracle with those healthcare workers her angels. all right, still ahead, history in the making at the new york city police department. and former minneapolis police officer derek chauvin guilty of violating george floyd's civil rights. hide our skin? not us. because dupixent targets a root cause of eczema, it helps heal your skin from within, keeping you one step ahead of it. and for kids ages 6 and up, that means clearer skin, and noticeably less itch. hide my skin? not me.
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>> o'donnell: last year, covid interrupted a tradition that goes back more than a century. cbs' mark strassmann is with the santa claus girls as they return to bring cheer to children in need. >> thank you. >> you're welcome. >> reporter: for more than a century, the santa claus girls have had west michigan's longest christmas list--l es?the pants y children. >> merry christmas! >> that's what it's all about, it's helping underprivileged
children. >> reporter: there is their only christmas. >> yes. >> for some. >> yes, it is. >> we try our best to give them something that they'll be excited about. >> reporter: inside this warehouse, tables stacked with gifts, five gifts apiece. >> look at that. .>> reporter: championship a handmade hat and mittens. the santa claus girls, bringing christmas to life here since 1908. >> the love that the people have for giving back just doesn't go away. >> reporter: ask liz lamancusa. >> this checkerboard came from santa claus girls around 1940s. >> reporter: you're holding your mother's christmas when she was 10 years old. >> i know, i know. >> reporter: her mother, betty richer jarosch, died this june at 90. >> it just warms my heart to see all these gifts and to know someone else will have the joy my mom had when she was younger. >> reporter: in this line, we found the carters. >> we're doing the best we can right now, during this time. >> reporter: ...looking to give their six kids a christmas.
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don't forget to set your dvr so you can watch us later. that is tonight's "cbs evening news." i'm nora o'donnell. >> announcer: a motorcycle seller's creative accounting. >> he was counting the money. >> judge judy: the $2,000? >> it was short $100. i had pre-counted it myself. it had $2,000. >> announcer: then more dents in their deal. >> judge judy: anything happen on the test-drive? >> no, ma'am. >> he tipped over the bike when he test-drove the bike. >> judge judy: where's the bike? >> i sold the bike to someone else. >> judge judy: you're a wonder person. you should be a ceo of a big company. >> announcer: "judge judy." you are about to enter the courtroom of you are about to enter the courtroom of judge judith sheindlin. captions paid for by cbs television distribution 25-year-old efrain jaime is suing 25-year-old christopher velasquez for the return of a down payment for a motorcycle. >> byrd: order! all rise! your honor, this is case number 49 on the calendar in the matter of jaime vs. velasquez.
>> judge judy: thank you. >> byrd: you're welcome, judge. parties have been sworn in. you may be seated. ma'am, have a seat, please. >> judge judy: mr. jaime, when did you meet mr. velasquez? >> february 11th of this year. >> judge judy: it is your claim that mr. velasquez scammed you out of the down payment on a motorcycle. that's your claim, right? >> yes, ma'am. >> judge judy: where do you come from? >> houston, texas. >> judge judy: and where do you live, sir? >> houston, texas, as well. >> judge judy: and who is this young lady? >> this is my witness, ixzamara obando. >> judge judy: so what did you bring her for? >> she was a witness to what happened -- to the agreement and everything that happened in the case. >> judge judy: all right, let's see if i understand this story. you saw an ad on craigslist for a motorcycle that mr. velasquez was selling? on what date did you see the ad? >> about january 23rd. >> judge judy: how did you contact him? >> cellphone, phone call, and text message. >> judge judy: you have copies of those? >> i have phone records, yes. but not through paper. i have a phone. >> judge judy: i'd like to see them.
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