Skip to main content

tv   News4 at 6  NBC  March 16, 2016 6:00pm-7:01pm EDT

6:00 pm
for tomorrow morning's rush but we're still waiting to hear if metro sticks to that plan. without the rails earlier, some commuters battled some heavy traffic. others had to get creative to get to work and school on time. news4's transportation reporter adam tuss is at metro headquarters with the latest. adam? >> reporter: hey, chris. i just talked to some metro officials and the goal, what they're going to announce in a couple minutes, the goal is to fully open the system tomorrow with some potential bus bridges in between stations. that means you would get on a bus from one station and it would take you to another station and potential single tracking in other areas. there are about 80% done with the inspection of these cables throughout the system. they found about 26 problems with the cables that they have gone through and looked at so far, and a little more than a dozen have been fixed. so that means there are still some problem spots out there, maybe ten or so they haven't even fixed yet. we're going to go to the press conference right now. it's
6:01 pm
general manager. >> before i begin, i want to say again that i know today presented a hardship to the region and i thank everyone for their support as we worked through this. let me tell you that the shutdown today was necessary. since we began at midnight, metro teams have identified 26 areas where damaged jumper cables and connector boots exist. the inspection is nearing completion but i would anticipate this number to grow slightly even higher. let me just share with you what we did while the system was closed at midnight last night. we segmented the system into 22 underground inspection zones where 600 jumper cables are located. this includes all areas of all lines. each of the 22 zones were inspected by teams that were looking for defects in jumper cables, connecting boots that were damaged or improperly positions and debris that could burn near
6:02 pm
the teams are covering approximately 100 miles of tunnels supported by 14 prime movers for supplies and materials. the behind those teams were multiple cable construction crews who were making repairs to any areas that were identified and needed immediate repair. what we found. if you take a look at this map behind me, if you could, what we found was as of 5:00 p.m., we found as i mentioned the 26 defected areaed. we completed 19 of the zones. we have three more to do and that's why we're roughly 86% there in terms of the inspection. we've identified 26 areas that require replacement or repair. we've accomplished 18 of those to date and we have 8 that are open. on the map is generally showing you where these are located. some of these obviously have multiple ones in one area. that's why you don't see all 26 up there. the red marks are what we have
6:03 pm
where we would not be running trains if we came upon these conditions. so there's three of those. mcpherson, farragut north, and at potomac avenue. let me also introduce a video that we have that shows you the type of work that was undertaken and then also what we found. so this is a crew walking down the track to inspect. this is a jumper cable between the third rail, expansion joint in the third rail. this is a cable with a freight to freight cable. this is why the system was shut do down.
6:04 pm
as bad as that looks, these do not indicate a cable that they would catch fire or they were imminent for fire, but clearly this is a hazardous condition that we cannot accept. our focus today has been basically to identify and mitigate these fire risks immediately. and, again, this is why the system was closed. in terms of next steps, as of 5:00 p.m., again, we've completed 18 of the 26. at 5:00 a.m. -- before 5:00 a.m. tomorrow, we will finish the immediate repairs for all 26 and any additional ones that we find over the next few hours. if we do not -- so we will open the system tomorrow at 5:00 a.m. if we are not able to repair any of those as we come
6:05 pm
we'll go into a single tracking mode and/or bus bruidges betwee stations, but our intention is to finish all of them through the evening. we have the teams in place to do to and what we found so far we are confident we can get there. although, again, i want to caution we still have about 10% of the system that is still under inspection. so with that before i take any questions, i would like to turn it over to the chairman. >> okay. thank you, paul, and good evening to everyone. and, first, i want to take this opportunity to thank paul and all of the metro staff and others who have come in to help with this enormous effort and an enormous effort it was. they began at midnight last night and have worked tirelessly all the way up until now and will continue to work until 5:00 on thursday morning to identify and correct any problems in our
6:06 pm
secondly, i want to say to all of the people who use metro in the region, we are sorry this had to happen, that it has come to this. we are aware of the inconvenience that was caused by closing down the system for the 29 hours, but we still believe today that we made the correct decision because of safety, that none of us in good conscience could send those trains out even with full knowledge of the participants of what the situation was knowing the risk that we had and the presentation by paul here today i think confirms that we made the correct decision, that there are issues, and that we are repairing those issues. and today's example is why metro is so important to our region. the commute in was difficult, the commute home is even more difficult, and i think it's important to remember that metro is not some standalone
6:07 pm
metro is us. metro belongs to the residents and the businesses in the district, in virginia, in maryland, and to the federal government. we are metro, all of us. we own metro. we participate in metro. it is our organization, and it's our responsibility. so as we go forward it's very important that everyone remember what happen today and everyone participate in investing in our future. we have a capital plan coming up, a one-year capital plan, that will help us assess what has to happen for the future of metro, and then we have a five-year capital plan that we want to put together, and we are going to need investment in that capital plan. i go back to my time on the board. in 1991, 25 years ago, when the discussion centered around a regional funding dedicated source for metro, a dedicated
6:08 pm
25 years later as the chairman of the board of metro again and no progress has been made on the issue. that is unconscionable. so as we go forward, i hope this is a wake-up call for the entire region, for the district, for virginia, for maryland, and for the federal government that we need to invest in our system once and for all. we need to establish the dedicated funding source and once and for all we need to support metro. i recognize, i have been around 25 years as an elected official, that the worst time to ask for more money or more support is when you're doing poorly. i recognize that, and it's paul, myself, and my board who are all very committed to metro who are going to show you that we are turning this organization around. we are going to make the hard decisions that are necessary to make this the shining example of
6:09 pm
regional cooperation and the pride of the region that it was when i left here in 2000. to make this a safe, reliable system, and then the region has to do its part to support metro. i want to thank you all for coming out here today. again, i want to thank the residents of the region, the businesses, the people who support and participate in metro. we are sorry for the inconvenience. it appears we will be opening tomorrow at 5:00, and we will again look forward to working with all of you to make this a great system. so with that, let me go back to paul and he and i are available to take any questions you might have. paul? [ inaudible question ] >> no, what it could be is they're primarily boots. so these are the boots, the orange boots, you know -- i
6:10 pm
replacing. [ inaudible question ] >> the three red ones in effect represent the cable issues and the other -- the three red boxes. [ inaudible ]. >> i know. because where there's a dot there may be a few jumper cables been a smaller area so we didn't show a bunch of dots on top of each other. [ inaudible ]. >> two things. one is we're not -- the assessment is not completed yet, okay? but this is the most heavily traveled portion of the system. so the wear and tear is going to be much greater on that part of the system. [ inaudible ] >> right.
6:11 pm
that's the next -- you know, that's my next task in front of me. my task today is to get this system open by 5:00 a.m. tomorrow and that's what we've been focusing on today. there's a whole lot more i have to do to find out how do we get to this position that i found myself in, you know, 48 hours ago. [ inaudible question ] >> you have been listening to metro's general manager paul wiedefeld as he explains where metro is right now. the takeaway is they're almost completely done with inspections. i guess, doreen, a little over 10% still out there need to be inspected, but for the most part they're done with inspections, but still have to get some things fixed tonight. >> and paul wiedefeld said it was clear that this shutdown was necessary. they inspected 600 jumper cables and they found 26 problems, potential problems,
6:12 pm
of frayed wires that could have caused another fire in a metro tunnel like we saw 15 months ago at l'enfant plaza, like we saw on monday here locally, and so they have got 18 of those 26 pblems corrected now, but they are still working on the others, and they expect to have most of them done before 5:00. >> you're talking less than 11 hours, and if they do not finish, they're talking about some areas may be single tracking and some stations may be closed. they may have to use bus bridges tomorrow to get folks from one metro station to another. so this is going to be developing all night, something we'll have to keep our eye on. >> certainly we will be covering this tonight for news4 at 11:00 and we will let you know what we know late tonight about which stations may be affected by those possible
6:13 pm
so more to come on this metro shutdown, but, again, metro expecting to reopen the system, almost all of the system tomorrow morning 5:00 a.m. roads have been a little busier than usual today but not as bad as people were afraid of. a lot of you opted to take the bus instead. that meant a longer wait and ride to work for many of you. bikeshare has also been a popular choice on the roads. many of you tell us the shutdown is worth it if it means keeping all of us safe. >> i would rather see them shut it down and get the lines fixed and make things more safe than to put it off. all we need is one more fire, right? >> uber and lyft are offering discounts for first-time users. they're also encouraging people to use the ride-sharing option and the d.c. taxicab commission is allowing car pooling without surcharges. we're working for you trying to get you home on time. you're
6:14 pm
4 traffic map showing conditions on our roads right now. you can find this map on the nbc washington app. just search traffic map. now to a developing story involving that deadly ambush outside a police station in prince george's county. we're hearing new revelations about the officer who shot a fellow officer. one suspect passed out during a dramatic day in court and the family says there's a good reason why one brother videotaped the shooting. county bureau chief tracee wilkins is sorting it all out live outside the courthouse. what are you hearing, tracee? >> reporter: well, chris, this has been a confusing and tragic case from the moment it all broke. a man walking up to a police station and firing at police officers, and then when we found out that his brother videotaped it all, there were a lot of questions. and today a family member tried to explain why her brother would do that. police say michael ford purposely fired at police, passenger vehicles, and an ambulance, all while his
6:15 pm
recorded the incident. today in court elijah's sister described why he did that this way. he recorded the video because eli ya was in awe by what happened. he knew no one would believe him. >> my mind is not on their rationale. my mind is on james and sheila colson, on my police family. >> reporter: today during the video bond review for elijah and malik ford, family members attempted to distance the two from their brother michael who police say approached the district three police station around with a gun and a death wish. the brothers were in the vehicle that michael took to the police station. charging documents allege that as bullets were flying, police yelled to the brothers parked nearby and asked where the gunman was. they said they didn't know. the confusion over the passionipassio positioning of the gunman may have led to the shooting of an officer who was plain clothed at the time. i
6:16 pm
circumstances precipitated by individuals who were in a position to prevent it from happening in first place. >> reporter: today elijah and malik ford were held without bond. michael thomas, the father of all three brothers, refused to comment after the hearing but in court said this in his son malik's defense. my son is excellent. i never thought i'd be standing in front of you pleading for his life. i have lost three sons in one shot. malik did pass out during this hearing, and he came to. it also caused a pause in this hearing as well. elijah is a student at bowie high school here in prince george's county. the family members say that these boys are taking care of their mother, that they are providers for the family, but at the end of the day the judge said no bond. now, michael ford is expected to make a first appearance we don't know when yet because he's still recovering in the hospital. reporting live in upper marlboro, i'm trace
6:17 pm
>> thank you. republicans in arizona and utah will pick their presidential nominee next tuesday, but they will not be hearing from the candidates in a debate ahead of time. fox news canceled monday night's debate in salt lake city. the plan started to unravel this morning after donald trump said he would not attend because of a schedule conflict. it's not the first time trump skipped a debate before the iowa caucus and he said last week there have been enough debates. tonight we're learning more about president obama's nominee to fill a vacant seat on the supreme court. federal appeals court judge merrick garland is already well known and widely respected in the local legal community. garland is the chief judge of the u.s. court of appeals for the d.c. circuit. he left a law partnership more than 25 years ago to work as a prosecutor here in washington. and when he got to the justice department, judge garland had oversight on some important cases, including the prosecution of timothy mcveigh for the oklahoma city bombing. >> people must be confident
6:18 pm
a judge's decisions are determined by the law and only the law. >> he is the right man for the job. he deserves to be confirmed. >> but doesn't look like that's going to happen. senate majority leader mitch mcconnell and other republicans insist they won't even hold hearings on the vacancy and want it to be filled by a new president next year. chris gordon is outside the high court with reaction from those who know judge garland well. chris? >> reporter: even if republicans keep judge garland waiting for confirmation hearings, he has plenty to do. supreme court nominee judge merrick garland will remain busy presiding over cases in the u.s. court of appeals. tomorrow the case of the woman who sued alpha kappa alpha sorority at howard university for denying her membership. law
6:19 pm
george touch says chief judge garland is a moderate who received bipartisan support at his last confirmation hearing. >> president clinton put him on the federal court of appeals in the district of columbia which is the court that everybody considers almost as important as the supreme court. >> the u.s. supreme court last its most or tick lat conservative with the death of antonin scalia. republicans are opposing confirmation hearings for judge garland. they want president obama's successor to pick the next supreme court justice, but u.s. senators from maryland and virginia are all urging confirmation of judge garland. >> it's now time for the senate to do the job, have hearings, and then have an up or down vote on his confirmation. >> reporter: i asked retired federal magistrate judge john fasseola why judge garland why accept the nomination. >> merrick gatherland has served
6:20 pm
could. >> reporter: carolyn frederickson says history is on the side of this nominee being confirmed. >> there has been a history of president's making nominations in election years that have moved forward so recently as 1988 when justice kennedy, who is still on the court, was confirmed. >> reporter: so will precedent or politics determine who will be the next u.s. supreme court justice? back to you. >> chris gordon, thank you. now to the new shape of the presidential race. hillary clinton swept all five democratic contests last night. donald trump would have rolled through all the republican races if it weren't for ohio governor john kasich pulling down a big win in his home state. steve handelsman joins us from florida where there is now one less republican on the campaign trail. steve? >> reporter: that's right, doreen. marco rubio being knocked out of this contest because of
6:21 pm
performance here in the primary of his home state, florida, has actually increased the intensity of the republican race. >> i believe more in this than ever. >> reporter: john kasich went to pennsylvania hours after winning ohio, his home state, beating donald trump who kasich warned today. >> and we are fighting for the future of this country, for the spirit of this country. and, you know, we're not going to get there by bashing one another. >> reporter: mathematically kasich cannot clinch the nomination. ted cruz still can. he urged the ohio governor to quit. >> longer kasich stays in the race, the more it benefits donald trump. >> neither of those guys can win a general election so maybe they're spoiling it for the republican party. >> reporter: despite his strong tuesday, trump needs 60% of the rest of the delegates to lock the nomination. and he warns if he's denied it at the convention, there will be riots. after losing all five states last night, democrat brernie
6:22 pm
hillary clinton is planning to shift her fire to donald trump who today hit clinton on instagram mocking her toughness in a world with isis and vladimir putin. trump is vowing to keep what he calls his edge. and, doreen, that's why as you reported, donald trump's refusing to take part in a fox debate on monday. why? because he's complained publicly that he thinks there are too many debates. he wants to be seen as a guy who makes the rules and doesn't necessarily have to follow the rules that he does not believe in. i'm steve handelsman, news4, live from miami. >> steve, thank you. north korea's highest court sentenced a university of virginia student to 15 years of hard labor in prison. otto warmbier is from ohio. his one-hour trial and harsh sentence came hours after veteran diplomat
6:23 pm
interceded on his behalf. richardson told "the new york times" he met with two diplomats at the united nations to press for warmbier's release. the uva student was visiting north korea with a tour group when he is arrested in january. he's accused of stealing a propaganda poster from his hotel. back here at home, as a fire ripped through a townhouse in woodbridge, panicked neighbors went door to door frantically knocking to get others out safely. >> and then i heard pounding and -- i'm sorry. i heard pounding and "fire, fire, get out of the house." >> it's been hours since that fire started on ponderosa court and investigators still can't account for one person. bureau reporter david culver is live at the scene with a look at the devastation. >> reporter: you can see behind me even hour
6:24 pm
started, as you mentioned, fire marshals are still here on the scene. you can see that's the house where the fire began and then look next to it. the homes on either side, they have these orange papers posted. both of those homes also deemed unsafe. the flames so aggressive joyce shingler watched from her home in shock. >> the flames were a full story. oh, my god, somebody can't be in there, can they? >> that very question motivated others to warn neighbors. >> they didn't think of themselves. they just were going and making sure people got up and out of their beds and out of their houses. >> everybody helping everybody. >> reporter: but not everyone could be helped. inside the house, a man believed to have been inside.
6:25 pm
somebody there. >> reporter: they tried calling his cell and then they watched one of his sons show up. skroop saw him running towards the house going, my dad, my dad. gee wanted to run in, and they stopped him because it was too intense, the fire, to do anything. >> they grabbed him, you know, because he was going to run. that's his father. he was running to the house. >> he had to be restrained. i'm sorry. >> reporter: those raw emotions understandable. hours later neighbors still don't know for sure if he was inside. they're relying on each other for comfort. and the struggle for investigators here is that the structure behind me is unsafe. they can't go in there. structurally it won't hold up. they have to wait until tomorrow morning until the atf brings in a crane so they can shore up the building and continue their search inside. reporting live tonight from woodbridge, virginia, i
6:26 pm
culver, news4. >> terrifying. thank you, david. very nice afternoon out there. it started out a little cool this morning but, boy, spring has sprung it feels like. doug, it's not going to last for very long. >> you're going to take us right back to winter. >> hey, it's not my fault. you know, don't blame the messenger but that's exactly what is going to happen. spring today, 70s, even 80s across our region, and, yeah, we are talking about a winter storm, could even mean some snow this weekend. right now the clouds have moved in, and some areas, we have some sunshine in others. 68 degrees, winds out of the east at 9 miles an hour. 77 in bleesburg. 74 in fredericksburg. patuxent river at 64 degrees. we mentioned the isolated showers. most of the area is dry and still dealing with very nice weather. look at what's happening in manassas and fairfax county. you can see where the storms are. ri
6:27 pm
right around 236 fairfax. all of this is moving right along 66 and will be in the d.c. area downtown within about the next half hour or so. this is the heaviest of the rain though. we'll zoom into this area. around fairfax and around centreville, you can see where this is along 66 and 50 around the yorkshire area just to the south of sudley springs. this is 234 here. this is 29 and 66 as they make their way out of fairfax county. if you're in fairfax county, heads up. maybe even some lightning and thunder with these but some very heavy downpours associated with this cold front. and this is a cold front that's moving through. it's not going to really cool our air too much, but tomorrow's temperatures will be a little bit below where we are today. big storm to the north and west and what it's doing is bringing in some cooler air. another piece of energy will come through tomorrow. that may give us a slight chance of a shower. but just like today,
6:28 pm
will be dry. 67 in leesburg. 70 in fredericksburg. 63 in martinsburg and over towards annapolis coming in at 62. then we get to the weekend. and, yeah, back to winter. really? yeah, really. it looks like an area of low pressure is going to move up the coast. it will be a coastal low. possibly even a nor'easter and bring in a northeasterly flow, that's the colder air and it does look like some snow will be likely with this. tracking the storm, coastal storm. snow looking more and more likely. hard to accumulate in the month of march. what are we going to see? still too early to tell. you know we'll be watching it for you here. tomorrow looking pretty good on st. paddy's day. friday a little breezy and much cooler for the wend. a high on saturday of 50. sunday only a high in the upper 30s. i have a little more on this at 6:45. next at 6:00, making it home without metro. how commuters are getting around without rail service tonight. and what you can expect tomorrow morning. caught on camera, two thieves break into a
6:29 pm
>> breaks my heart really. >> find out what they were after. and an atm skimming operation reaches further than originally thought. the banks in virginia and maryland that have been targeted. access denied. the news4 i-team runs into problems getting public records from d.c. following that small but
6:30 pm
when it comes to the fithings you love,. you want more. love romance? get lost in every embrace. into sports? follow every pitch, every play and every win. change the way you experience tv with x1 from xfinity.
6:31 pm
6:32 pm
there are new developments just within the last few minutes on the metro shutdown. >> yeah. gm paul wiedefeld says metro will open at 5:00 in the morning. we want to go to adam tuss about what he had to say about the inspections. >> reporter: yeah, chris. you know, there was some serious questions that were asked to the general manager in there right now, but let's talk about again what's going to happen tomorrow morning for commuters. 5:00 a.m. the system opens and you can potentially see some single tracking or some bus bridges if the problems aren't all taken care of by tomorrow morning. so metro kind of hedging its bets there. here is where metro stands right now. 80% of the suspect cables have been inspected systemwide. they found about 26 defects in those 600 cables, and all of the defects were along the blue, orange, and silver lines right now. that is where most of the problems were found. and, again, if all the problems can't be fixed by tomorrow
6:33 pm
single tracking or bus bridging. i asked the general manager what he saw at mcpherson square. don't forget, all of this stems from a fire that happened at mcpherson square on monday. the general manager went down on the tracks where there was smoke into the tunnel. i asked him if that was a situation similar to l'enfant plaza. >> it would have been very similar, i believe, to the l'enfant plaza. again, depends obviously where the train had been in this incident, but clearly the conditions were very similar to what we experienced at the l'enfant plaza meaning in terms of the smoke. >> reporter: so what the general manager just admitted there and what the metro board chair admitted was that if that incident on monday morning had happened an hour or two later in the morning rush, could you have had a potentially deadly accident again on the metrorail system. that's why the general manager
6:34 pm
took this unprecedented step to shut the system down. he saw something that was completely baffling to him when he went down there into the system and looked at the tracks. that's why they shut it down. it was that serious of an issue, and guys, they found 26 problems in one day that had to be fixed. >> and it was very interesting that they showed -- he showed the video of the frayed wires. you know, if you don't understand how metrorail works, we can all look at frayed wire and see that that is a dangerous situation. >> reporter: that's right, doreen. he called that a no-go zone basically. that if there was a train that was training to run through those spots where that wire was so frayed and looked that bad, that a train potentially might not have even been able to make it through that spot. someone asked the question when were you going to inspect all of this stuff if the fire hadn't happened on monday morning and it literally was going to be months maybe before metro would get in there and take a look at that stuff. so in some cases metro extremely
6:35 pm
monday morning happened at 4:30 in the morning when the system was not open and smoke once again filled a metro tunnel. this time they were lucky there were no passengers on trains inside that tunnel, guys. >> adam tuss reporting and metro again reopening 5:00 in the morning. right now the evening rush is still under way and people who usually depend on metrorail have been finding other ways to get to where they need to go today, renting a bicycle some of them, jumping on a bus or hailing a cab. news4's meagan fitzgerald has that side of the story. >> reporter: when metro says the rails aren't an option, many commuters had to come up with a game plan quickly. >> my commute was already. i specifically woke up at 5:30 in the morning so i could get one of the first buses into the city. >> reporter: and folks like john sullivan ka tell you those metrobuses were in high demand. >> by the time we got to mclean though, it was jam packed, the bus, and there was a very long
6:36 pm
for some folks staying home wasn't an option. >> i have business here. just business meetings. >> we had a meeting with six people and five of them were there in person. >> reporter: vdot said they were closely monitoring the roads during the morning commute and said it was fairly uneventful. the department put out the following statement saying, quote, fortunately the increase in number of employees teleworking and drivers ride sharing helped keep traffic to a relatively normal level. zahara washington is the jeng manager for uber d.c. she said the company saw a surge in riders using their car pool service and that's something they planned for. >> particular for pool we did open it up to the suburbs today to folks out of the d.c. core were able to use that as an option. >> reporter: whether folks stayed home, car pooled, or found alternate means of transportation, all in all, the morning commute wasn't as bad as some expected and they're hoping the same is true for the evening rush. >> my plan is to stay late and take a bus maybe a
6:37 pm
>> reporter: now, vdot says they also paid close attention to the pricing of the tolls and they say it didn't increase that much today which is indicative of volume. they compared it to last week this time and they say there was just a slight increase. doreen? >> all right, meagan fitzgerald, thank you. that metro shutdown caused challenges for a lot of us. we've been asking you to weigh in on metro's decision to close for the whole day. take a look at the results. more than 80% of you said it was the right call. as the debate is heating up over plans to rename a local middle scoop. why why a board meeting could stir up some strong emotions. >> reporter: almost four dozen ipads stolen from this charter school in southeast. ipads used by little kids. who could do something like
6:38 pm
6:39 pm
6:40 pm
6:41 pm
in less than 30 minutes, the prince william county school board is going to meet about a controversial decision to rename a school. the board voted earlier this month to honor two prince william county residents by naming a school after one of them. they chose fallen firefighter kyle wilson as the namesake of a new elementary school, but so as to still honor african-american community leader dr. george hampton, they decided to rename godwin middle school hampton middle school. that has sparked some outrage and it's even believed to have prompt prompted a racial threat against one school board member. we'll show you what happened tonight on news4 at 1 is:00. over in the district school officials say thieves broke into a high-tech elementary school and ripped off dozens of ipads. tonight we're hearing some new reaction from parents and news4's pat collins has that report from southeast. >> reporter: how could someone steal ipads?
6:42 pm
>> i know there are thieves in the world but to take this from children who were learning who were very young, i mean, this is more than criminal. this is really the lowest of the low. >> reporter: that's joe smith. he's the chief operating officer of the eagle academy on wheeler road, a modern high-tech school that focuses on little kids, pre-k to third grade. he's not the only one upset by what happened here. parents are shaking their heads too. >> i don't know how you would break into a school that you know children go to to learn. >> reporter: on the last sunday in february two guys broke into the school and stole 35 ipads. >> it's absolutely unacceptable. that the someone would come into an elementary school and steal ipads. >> reporter: they went from room to room almost like they knew exactly where to go. what kind of person comes -- >> a coward.
6:43 pm
from an elementary school where the kids need the education in today's society, to take educational things from a school, that's a coward. >> reporter: they stuffed the ipads into a getaway bag and made their escape. now, four days before that, somebody slipped into the school and stole a dozen more ipads. >> it's sad. very sad that they could appear and steal of all things what these kids need for today. >> reporter: there's hope here that whoever took the ipads will realize the pain they caused and bring them back to the school. there's hope they'll do that. in southeast, pat collins, news4. remember this? it was only a dusting but, boy, it caught d.c. government agencies off guard. tonight the i-team went searching for answers about the city's response in the hours leading up to that
6:44 pm
when you build one of the biggest retail businesses in america, you spend a lot of time working closely with elected officials. from secretaries to presidents you learn what works in government and what doesn't. and if you're david trone you take those lessons all the way to congress. you pledge to take nothing from pacs or corporations because the only special interest a congressman should have is you and he'll promise to work with anyone if it'll get things done. after all he's spent 30 years working both sides of the aisle. i'm david trone and i approve this message.
6:45 pm
6:46 pm
it's 6:46 and we're following breaking news in prince george's county. chopper4 just got over the scene
6:47 pm
road. the units saw smoke and fire pouring out of a garden apartment. they're still trying to put this thing out but at this time we don't have any reports of injuries. access denied. at least temporarily in d.c. government. a review by the news4 i-team reveals recent problems with the handling and release of public records at the wilson building. scott macfarlane and the i-team found glitches in how the city handles the records you have a right to see. >> nationwide this week is sunshine week. organized to call attention to the need for government to be open and transparent with its citizens. we uncovered a lack of sunshine at d.c.'s wilson building. a lack of sunshine we first noticed during a winter storm. >> reporter: how long did it take you to get home january 20th? two days before the blizzard of 2016 a much smaller storm paralyzed rush hour including for daniel johnson. >> i had to go to the post
6:48 pm
office pit lliterally a mile fr where i live. it took me an hour. >> reporter: what was the road like? >> it was a sheet of ice? >> reporter: the news4 i-team submitted a series of freedom of information act trying to better understand if and why officials were caught off-guard. in some cases we succeeded. the city's department of public works told us they upgraded their response that night as conditions in the forecast worsened and they shared hundreds of e-mails between top officials indicating as much. one shows the city made a last-minute decision to upgrade its preparations at 3:00 p.m., about an hour before the precipitation began. another sent at 8:20 p.m. by the agency's director indicates that upgrade wasn't enough. he writes, we're not doing great out there tonight. major streets are coated and it's very slipper. let's get in as many crews as we need. a different official later writes, i left the offense at 10:00 p.m. i'm just at the pentagon now at 12:38.
6:49 pm
back to the office. >> we found much of the traffic communication wasn't about the commute but about the price and availability of the equipment for the blizzard itself. we requested e-mails from the office of the mayor so we were surprised when they showed us what we found in their search. nothing. no records. no snow related e-mails that day. we found that to be an odd response because we saw the mayor's name on records the department of public works sent us so we challenged and asked them to search again. something melissa yeager of sunlight foundation says is often required. >> certainly it's a hard process to be transparent, but overall it makes our democracy stronger and often makes our government work more efficiently. >> we eventually received records showing they arranged a late-night conference call at 10:45 and they exchanged messages from constituents warning cars
6:50 pm
salt and sand were lacking, and roads were total gridlock. why didn't they show up the first time. the city spokesman said it was a technical issue with the archive system. they withheld more than 100 pages redacted and wouldn't specify why. a city official told us after we brought the glitch to their attention they fixed the prawn and said only four "made after december 31st were impacts but we checked their work again and found the same problem appears to have occurred with public record requests for d.c. public schools on 2015. >> don't try to put one over on the i-team. >> that was something that was predicted. we taulked about it. >> we all remember that long, difficult drive home and you and your team were warning about that. >> i tried to get out too. >> the nbc washington app just pushed out an alert saying lightning has been detected right
6:51 pm
>> we had thunderstorm activity right now. we go from snow to thunderstorms and then guess what -- >> you like that shameless plug? >> i do. the nbc washington app where you can download it now. storm team4 radar on there too. take a look at this shot. the sun shining out there for most of you right now but for some of us right inside the beltway, we've got some shower activity. take a look at this thunderstorm that has now developed into fairfax county, even some hail reported from that too. we are seeing a little bit in the way of lightning. not a whole lot. you really can't see it too well. let me zoom on in for you and show you right where this is. this is right in through the beltway, right through the city of fairfax. making its way in through fairfax county towards arlington around the alexandria area right on downtown starting to see some shower activity. the heaviest rain just south of 66 and right along the beltway, springfield, falls church, bailey's cross. we will see that moving into
6:52 pm
talked about out towards prince george's county. you can see the smoke rising and then lifting away as that shower is making its way through. the shower may help a little bit but not much. 67 degrees, temperatures dropping through the 60s into the upper 50s by 11:00 tonight. temperatures 71 in rockville. take a look at what's going to happen in the text couple days. 69 tomorrow. 62 on friday. 50 on saturday, and then we get to sunday and, yes, we are predicting some snow on sunday. still a lot of uncertainty with this system. we'll continue t o kathleen matthews: if we want to be heard, we need women in congress. it was the women who forced republicans to include women's health and contraceptive coverage in the affordable care act. in congress, i'll fight for pay equity, family leave and tougher gun safety laws. and, as an environmentalist, i'll work combat climate change. i know as a journalist and as a senior executive in business
6:53 pm
we get things done. i'm kathleen mathews and i approve this message.
6:54 pm
your home can be, even when life isn't
6:55 pm
the spring home event is happening now. from classic to contemporary, havertys. this is the xfinity sports desk brought to you by xfinity, your home for the most live sports. >> so arena league coming to d.c. >> yes. the great thing about arena football, everybody makes the playoffs. everybody. >> so there's a regular season because -- who cares, chris. >> more football for sports fans is never a bad idea. today at the verizon center the arena football league welcomed their newest member. they're still working on a logo and a name but the excitement is not lacking. today league officials and city leaders were on hand for the official announcement. that is a
6:56 pm
gene simmons of kiss is the owner of the afl's l.a. kiss. season tickets for next spring starting around $50. arena football is billed as a faster and more entertaining game than the nfl. it's eight on eight football. the field is 50 yards long. arena league almost as entert n entertaining as gene simmons. almost. >> the sun never sets on planet cool. this is like adrenaline football. there's no time to figure out if you're coming or if you have your mom's hips or what's going on. just seeing your face from beginning to end. the nfl is great but once you put the ball down, everything stops. people huddle, they talk. time-out. get out of here. we want to be kids and really have the time of our lives. so all the serious stuff drains you of your brain cells and then when it's time to unwind, bring the family, bring your kids. you can see stuff here that you
6:57 pm
>> i heard mother's hips and that's about it. >> don't overthink it. >> i'm excited. it's going to be fun. >> season tickets have already gone on sale. moving to the nba. playoff teams usually don't lose five straight games this time of year. consistency has been the biggest issue for the wizards this season. yes, that skid did come to an end against detroit but how will they respond tonight against chicago. another team standing in their way of possibly making the playoffs. >> you got to believe you can do it. so it's not just a matter of coming out and understanding the things that we did well and continue to try to do those. we talked about this is another game as was detroit. if we can win it, we win the season series match-up, which can go a long way. >> they always play chicago tough. should be a good game tonight. >> we've seen teams make a late push and get in.
6:58 pm
>> it's raining out there. >> "nbc nightly news" is up next. >> see you at 11:00. >> thought i'd tell you.
6:59 pm
stroand restoring aing a newbfather's faith. it's standing tall after one surgery... not six. stronger is being a typical kid... despite a rare disorder. stronger is finding it earlier... and coming home sooner. stronger is seeking answers... and not giving up, until you find them. because we don't just want your kids to grow up, we want them to grow up stronger.
7:00 pm
developing news. tonight supreme court showdown. president obama's supreme court nominee revealed as many republicans refuse to even meet with him. an epic battle brewing. trump versus clinton. after big wins, donald trump warns of riots if he's denied the nomination at a contested convention, and hillary clinton now plotting to take him on. an american student sentenced in north korea, breaking down as he's ordered to serve 15 years of hard labor. what north korea says he did. a shocking escape caught on camera. a helicopter hijacked at gunpoint flying over a prison as inmates grab hold and hang on for their lives. guards helpless to stop them. and cancer drug outrage. billions wasted as live-saving meds are


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on