tv NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt NBC January 1, 2018 7:00pm-7:30pm EST
with a 2-year price guarantee with a 2-year agreement. tonight, a frigid and dangerous start to the new year. below freezing temperatures in 90% of the country with at least five deaths now linked to the cold. just when will it end? the search for what caused a plane to hit a mountain moments after takeoff. in costa rica. ten americans killed, five from the same family. the new warning to the u.s. from north korea's dictator who says he has the nuclear button on his desk. buying pot. it's now legal for recreational use in california. one of the many new laws taking effect today. and a celebration of life at a big new year's day parade and the selfless acts that are inspiring america. this is nbc "nightly news" with lester holt. good evening. and happy new year. i'm peter alexander in fole
tonight bone-chilling cold temperatures are giving tens of millions of americans little to celebrate this new year's day. an arctic blast that's not just dangerous. it's deadly. parts of 35 states are under wind chill advisories or warnings with record chill from nebraska to new york. there's little relief in sight. tomorrow's temperatures again expected to stay well below average across much of the u.s. we begin tonight with nbc's blake mccoy in chicago. >> reporter: a bitter freeze gripping the country. >> it's unbearable. >> i feel it every second in my bones. >> reporter: now, turning deadly with at least five suspected cold-weather deaths, the latest in detroit where a man was found frozen in front of a church. this as dangerous whiteout conditions caused a massive pile-up in michigan. an indiana woman had to be rescued after her car plunged into an icy pond trapping her as it sank. overnight it was the coldest ball drop in a hundred years, just 9
new york's times square. >> we're freezing, and we had no idea it was going to be this cold. >> it's the coldest i've ever been. >> reporter: much of the country begins 2018 in this prolonged deep freeze. 90% of america waking up below freezing today. 35% below zero. new record lows set in places like omaha, des moines and buffalo. for emergency crews, the bitter cold is presenting a challenge. >> we've got two trucks froze up right now. we're in the process of trying to get them back to the station so they can thaw out. >> two, one. >> reporter: runners in chicago braved sub-zero temperatures for new year's day 5k. >> we're late because we questioned our sanity. >> reporter: columbus moved its indoors. perhaps the heartiest souls of all, those taking the polar plunge, despite polar temperatures. tonight you can see ice over the chicago river here. it feels like 14 below
while things will warm up a bit tomorrow for much of the country, a second blast of arctic air is set to move in later this week. a frigid start to 2018. peter? >> all right, blake. stay warm. hustle inside when you can. there's more news now. in costa rica investigators are trying to find out what caused a small plane to slam into a mountain killing ten americans, most of them from two families on vacation. it's reportedly the airline's second deadly crash in recent months. nbc's gabe gutierrez has the details. >> oh, my god. it's like right here. like you can see all the smoke. everybody's screaming and yelling. >> reporter: near costa rica's pacific coast an eyewitness describes the horrifying scene after a single engine plane crashed in the woods. 12 people killed including ten americans and two local crew members. >> it like went up and then all of a sudden just beared to the left and nosedived right in front of us. >> reporter: tonight in suburban new york, friends and family are
bruce and irene steinberg and their three sons, matthew, william and zachary. >> inconceivable that a whole family should meet with such a disaster. they were a lovely family. >> reporter: also among the dead mitchell and leslie weiss from near tampa, florida, along with their two children. the charter plane belonged to nature air, which did not respond to a request for comment today. in september two passengers including an american were killed when another one of its flights reportedly crashed into a river. authorities say this aircraft had been inspected a month ago, but strong winds had delayed its landing earlier on sunday. the california-based travel company that organized the trip says it's extremely heartbroken over this horrific loss of life and that it's working with local investigators to find out exactly what caused this unimaginable tragedy. gabe gutierrez, nbc news. we're learning much more tonight
carried out that attack in colorado killing a young sheriff's deputy and wounding six other people before he was killed. nbc's steve patterson is there and has those details. >> reporter: new images of deputy zackari parrish's young family before it was shattered when the 29-year-old officer was killed in an apparent ambush. >> when i sat with his wife and held her hand, i could see in her eyes her life is over. >> shots fired, shots fired. >> reporter: more than 100 rounds fired wounding four other officers and two civilians. >> we have one deputy down inside the apartment. all of us have been hit at least once. >> reporter: a s.w.a.t. team killed the suspect, 37-year-old matthew riehl. tonight authorities are investigating his motive. >> you know who will flub next election. >> reporter: riehl recently posted a series of incoherent angry messages online including videos railing against local law enforcement. >> we're going to fire all these bums come next year.
iraq war veteran, honorably discharged in 2012, practiced law after graduating from the university of wyoming. in november, the school sent a letter to faculty and staff along with a picture of him and his car warning about rambling nonsensical messages on his facebook page that mentioned the school. today sheriff joe pelley, from the neighboring boulder department, says his son, jeff, was one of the responding deputies. >> our focus is on getting him healthy and up and moving. >> reporter: he was shot while trying to drag parrish to safety. >> he was bent over zack trying to get hold of him to pull him out. that's why the bullet went through his body. >> reporter: community members now turning this patrol car into a memorial for a fallen service member and family man. so now all but one of the deputies wounded in that attack have been treated and released from a local hospital. only deputy pelley remains, facing a long road to recovery after undergoing emergency surgery. peter? >> steve patterson in colorado.
roberts says the federal court system needs to do more to protect its employees from sexual harassment. it's part of a year-end report on the federal judiciary. roberts announced that a task force will examine whether enough's being done to investigate complaints. this follows the recent retirement of a federal judge reportedly accused of sexual harassment by 15 women. iran's state-run media tonight says 13 people have been killed in anti-government protests nationwide. the demonstrations there have been going on for five days now as president trump voices his support for the protesters. chief white house correspondent hallie jackson has more. >> reporter: tonight, one iranian police officer is dead, three others hurt, according to state media as government security forces battle with protesters, demonstrations now turning deadlier. outrage over skyrocketing prices for food morphing into broader anti-regime anger for thousands of iranians in the streets. nbc's ali arouzi is in tehran.
>> authorities here also on the one hand have acknowledged people's dissatisfaction over the economy but have also blamed many of the protesters for trying to take this in another direction and issued warnings that demonstrations will be dealt with severely. >> reporter: president trump seeming sympathetic to those protesters, tweeting today, the great iranian people have been repressed for many years. they are hungry for food and for freedom. along with human rights, the wealth of iran is being looted. time for change. is that the best course of action for him here? >> probably not. let's face it, america is rather toxic inside iran. it might be more helpful for us to sit back and let this play out. >> reporter: so far the protests are iran's biggest since the 2009 so-called green movement. but that was different. more urban, more centered on students. and the official u.s. response was different, too. then-president obama preferred a more cautious approach. this time pres
to insert himself into the unrest, one that could end by tomorrow or perhaps stretch for weeks. >> any time you have thousands of people risking their lives against a state that is prepared to use, quote, an iron fist, that's impressive. >> reporter: president trump is back in washington tonight after spending the holidays in south florida facing a number of foreign policy challenges like iran and a packed domestic agenda, too. he's looking ahead to that mid-month deadline to come to some kind of a budget deal with lawmakers or else face the risk of a government shutdown. peter? >> hallie jackson on the north lawn tonight, thank you so much. an ominous new year's message today from north korea's dictator who made new claims about his country's ability to reach the u.s. with its nuclear weapons. at the same time kim jong-un made a new overture to south korea. nbc's kelly cobiella has the latest tonight from seoul. >> reporter: tonight kim jong-un unleashing an ominous warning
mainland is within our firing range, and the nuclear button is on my desk. it's not a threat, he said, but a reality. the president reacting at a new year's eve party. >> has the nuclear button on his desk. >> we'll see. we'll see. >> reporter: after a ballistic missile launch in november, kim jong-un now claims his nuclear weapons program is complete. experts analyzing the video said it was the most powerful missile yet, possibly capable of striking the u.s. east coast, but north korea still has technical hurdles to cross. what is the main message? >> well, the signal that kim jong-un is sending to americans is checkmate, you know, game over. you have to deal with reality. >> reporter: kim jong-un never mentioned president trump in his speech. instead extending a hand to south korea and offering talks, yet no sign the north is ready to disarm despite u.n. sanctions. kim jong-un announcing a new goal today, mass producing nuclear
[000:10:58;00] missiles. the country's new year's resolution for 2018. kelly cobiella, nbc news, seoul. a scary scene at a new year's eve celebration on an island in russia where an 80-foot plastic christmas tree burst into flames. look at those pictures. thousands watched in horror as the tree burned up in a matter of minutes. fortunately, there were no reports of injuries. in liverpool, england, flames raced through a multistory parking garage on new year's eve destroying about 1400 cars. it apparently began with an accidental fire in one of those cars. officials said a sprinkler system would have likely stopped the flames from doing so much damage. here in this country with that record cold, it's the time of year when many families start thinking about how to escape the winter chill. the florida keys have always been a prime destination, but that region, of course, was shattered by hurricane irma, and many areas there are still scrambling to rebuild. here's nbc's tammy
leitner. typically marks the beginning of the high season here in the keys. >> welcome, welcome. where you visiting from? we are starting to see business increase, and every day is better than the day before. >> reporter: and while key west is well on its way to recovery, businesses in the middle keys are not as lucky. >> the water reached about here. >> reporter: harry appel's bed and breakfast in big pine key is a shell of what it was before hurricane irma roared ashore more than three months ago. about 30% of hotels in the keys are still too damaged to open. >> we've had to refund customers between, you know, 50,000 and $60,000. >> reporter: all along the highway, visible reminders of the devastation. 1700 businesses and homes were destroyed. the worst of it in big pine key, cudjoe key and parts of the lower keys. >> it's still awful. still trash everywhere and stinks around here, but it's getting there. >> reporter: local
officials say they've removed 2.2 million cubic yards of storm debris, but some locals feel it's not fast enough. >> i kind of think of a war zone. >> reporter: steve miller says some of his friends have chosen to leave rather than rebuild. >> a lot of my friends have said, you know, i don't think i want to do this again. >> reporter: roughly 300 families are living in fema trailers. >> all i can do is try and hope at this point. >> reporter: many hope a booming tourist season will breathe new life into the battered keys. tammy leitner, nbc news, key west. and still ahead tonight, new year, new laws including the latest state to legalize recreational pot. also, why hundreds came out in 2-degree weather to welcome home their team now headed to the postseason for the first time in 18 years. anybody about your money? yeah, i got some financial guidance a while ago. how'd that go? he kept spelling my name with an 'i' but it's bryan with a 'y.' yeah, since birth. that drives me crazy. yes. it's on all your email. yes. they should know this?
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save seven dollars. look in sunday's paper. the beginning of the new year brings all kinds of new state laws that go into effect beginning today from legalizing marijuana to requiring more paid family leave, to restricting talking on your cell phone while driving. nbc's justice correspondent pete williams takes a look. >> reporter: the new year brings retail sales of recreational marijuana to the nation's most populous state. it's legal today in california for adults over 21. rules are strict. it must be sold in sealed child-resistant packages, shops must close by 10:00 p.m. >> we're going to make sure that these businesses are not located near parks or schools or churches, things of that kind. >> reporter: starting today oregon banned selling cigarettes to anyone under 21 including e-cigarettes known as vapes. it's the fourth state to do so. maine becomes the fifth in july. a new law in tennessee makes it illegal to drive through a school zone while holding a
cell phone. drivers under 18 can't use the phone at all in school zones even hands free. new york today begins enforcing the nation's most comprehensive law requiring employers to give paid family leave eventually up to 12 weeks a year such as when there's a newborn or a sick family member at home. at this brooklyn catalog and online retailer, the ceo says it's good for the bottom line. >> providing our workers with an opportunity to balance their personal needs and work requirements is something that we think is in our business interests as well. >> reporter: in vermont, the boss can no longer demand user names or passwords to get into the social media accounts of employees or job applicants. gun owners in california starting today cannot get ammunition through the mail. they must buy it in person at a licensed dealer, a step toward eventual background checks. the new year brings a 1.9% pay raise for the
nation's 2 million federal workers. month. and no celebrating the new year in las vegas with shark-fin soup. as of today it's illegal in nevada. pete williams, nbc news, washington. >> good reminder from coast to coast. up next right here, one woman's unusual space mission doing her own vital job for nasa. you might take something for your heart... or joints. but do you take something for your brain. with an ingredient originally found in jellyfish, prevagen is the number one selling brain-health supplement
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an "unjection™". the scene late last night in buffalo where hundreds of fans welcomed home their beloved bills and partied like it was 1999. take a look. that's the last time the bills made it to the nfl playoffs. they did it yesterday by outmuscling miami. later clinching their playoff spot when cincinnati beat baltimore. the bills erupting as they watched the end of that game in the locker room. jacksonville jaguars up next. that brings us to a story about the american dream and how one woman is fulfilling it by using her skills to make key parts for this country's space program. it began many years ago when she left vietnam, and today those skills are
helping america o the journey to space starts with a single stitch. here in the nasa jet propulsion lab near l.a., this sewing circle is making blankets for rocket ships -- >> and liftoff of the cassini spacecraft. >> reporter: to insulate from the extreme temperatures in orbit, each thermal blanket is patterned, measured and fitted by hand. >> i used to tell my kid, i'm making dresses for spacecraft, because they couldn't understand what i mean by blanket. >> reporter: lien pham learned those skills after fleeing the vietnam war, never dreaming she'd join a team in america reaching for the stars. >> jpl as a community and nasa as a whole, it's about the people. and they're from all walks of life, from all parts of this wonderful world of ours. >> reporter: mark duran oversees the shield shop. >> we're at times working parallel five flight projects, and this team is strong
and mighty when it comes to delivering on >> reporter: in pham's first project at nasa, the cassini mission to saturn, her gold blankets survived the journey helping capture never-before-seen views of the ringed planet. >> there's so many things you have to take into consideration. you know, there's a moving part or there's a mirror. you have to be paying attention to it. i love my job. i do it, and i really enjoy doing it. >> reporter: the powerful story of immigrants now woven into the fabric of america. >> love lien's story. she tells us her work doesn't stop at the office. last year she tailored her daughter's wedding dress as well. when we come back, celebrating the gift of life at today's rose parade. back, celebrating the gif ♪ traders -- they're always looking for advantages. the smart ones look to fidelity to find them. we give you research and data-visualization tools to help identify potential opportunities. so, you can do it this way...
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stay ahead of ibs-d with viberzi. finally tonight, at the annual rose parade in pasadena, california, today, there were plenty of flowers but also a poignant theme on one of the floats. it honored those who helped save the lives of so many others by giving part of themselves. here's joe fryer. >> reporter: on every rose parade float natural materials cover the outside. for the donate life float that beauty helps punctuate what's on the inside. >> he's here with you, always. >> reporter: baseball legend rod carew is riding the float this year because he received a heart and kidney from an organ donor. >> it's the greatest thing that anyone can do. you know, there's so many people out there that need organs. >> reporter: his donor, konrad reuland, died from a brain aneurysm at the age of 29. weeks later konrad's parents were able to listen to their son's heart. now they're honoring him by riding with carew in the parade. you guys consider yourselves family,
don't you? >> that's the first when they came to our house that day, whether you like it or not, you're family now. >> reporter: family, that's how the owens feel. they lost their daughter, melissa, but her heart went to yolanda harshaw. now they're all riding the float together in melissa's memory. >> anything to help them out, you know, keep melissa's dream alive, i'm all for it. >> it's an incredible, incredible platform for her to be able to speak for a donation. >> reporter: as the parade rolled through california today, the floral portraits of 44 organ donors could be seen on the float along with the many people they've touched through their gift of life. joe fryer, nbc news, pasadena, california. what a great way to start the new year. that's "nightly news" for this monday night. lester will be back tomorrow. i'm peter alexander. for all of us at nbc news, we thank you for watching. happy new year and have a good night. you for watching. happy new year and
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