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tv   NBC Nightly News  NBC  April 11, 2015 4:00pm-4:31pm PDT

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on this saturday night, historic meeting. the first face-to-face talks in almost six decades between an american and a cuban president. the symbolic opening of a new era after so many years of hostility. lockdown. a shooting at the steps of the u.s. capitol on one of washington's busiest weekends of the year. tonight, what we're learning about the suspected shooter. what a bargain. if you dreamed of a european vacation, now's the time. why more and more americans are cashing in on trips overseas. and pipe dream. the chance for modern movie goers to experience the grand old days of film. this is "nbc nightly news" with lester holt. substituting tonight peter alexander. good evening.
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late this afternoon president obama did something that no u.s. president has done since dwight eisenhower, meeting face-to-face with his cuban counterpart. it marked the most dramatic moment yet as the two countries redefine their relationship. it was time for us to try something new, president obama said. today's highly anticipated talks overshadowed this weekend's summit of the americas, the first-ever attended by a cuban leader. we begin tonight with our senior white house correspondent chris jansing in panama. chris. >> reporter: good evening, peter. the anticipation had been building to this historic moment for months. and when president obama finally sat down with raul castro, the meeting lived up to the hype, going longer than expected and marking what the president called a turning point. with a handshake and a simple sit-down, president obama and raul castro rewrote the history book. and the world was watching. >> i think we are now in a position to move on a path towards the future and leave
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behind some of the circumstances of the past. >> reporter: moments rife with symbolism, signaling a thaw in cold war era animosities. but the president acknowledged differences remain. >> we will continue to try to lift up concerns around democracy and human rights. >> reporter: their meeting lasted about an hour but implications will last decades to come. and the president said every issue is on the table. he's expected to take cuba off the list of nations that sponsor terrorism, opening the way for embassies to open in washington and havana. >> translator: our countries have a long and complicated history, but we are willing to make progress in the way the president has described. >> reporte meeting was subject of intense planning since december when the two agreed to pursue full diplomatic relations in a 45-minute phone call. already in cuba signs of change. for more iphones to
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more tourists. a hint of change even from raul castro, who after a long airing of past grievances against the u.s. praised the president. >> translator: i have told him that in my opinion president obama is an honest man. >> reporter: he even said he'd read obama biographies, just hadn't finished them yet. but as the two countries move toward a new era, old hostilities linger. here in panama there have been vocal and even violent encounters. some opponents of obama's overtures came here from miami were injured in scuffles with pro-castro demonstrators. >> we're the voice for the cuban people because they've been repressed all these years. >> reporte in cuba and the u.s. show ready for change. one sign of waning sign of hostilities, a photo of the two leaders with the understated headline picture of the day. well said late today that those embassies coul actually open very quickly. that would end decades
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of isolation for cuba and for the president a building block of his legacy, peter. >> chris jansing at the end of a historic day. chris, thank you. there was a brief scare this afternoon in washington after reports of gunshots on the grounds of the u.s. capitol building. we get more on that tonight from our justice correspondent pete williams. >> reporter: early this afternoon the sound of a single gunshot shattered the calm on the west front of the u.s. capitol facing the national mall. this witness says he saw a man collapse a few feet away. >> the girl who was looking over my shoulder threw her hand up and said, oh my gosh, he just shot himself. >> reporter: but police soon declared it suicide. it happened as tourists and locals were crowded into the area for the annual cherry blossom festival. members of congress out of town with few staffers working on a saturday, the capitol and its underground visitor center were immediately put on lockdown. >> there was some uneasiness going on. people didn't know what was happening. people frustrated, people missing flights. >> reporter: nearby streets blocked off near the capitol
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building. police also reported a suspicious package in the same area. authorities say that turned out to be the man's suitcase. >> there seems to be no connection to terrorism or anything related to that, but obviously we will continue to investigate the gentleman. >> reporter: authorities have not yet released the man's name as they work to confirm his identity and notify family members. they say he was carrying a sign about justice and taxes, peter. >> pete williams, thank you very much. in south carolina today a funeral was held for walter scott, the black man who was shot to death by a white police officer last weekend. it came as his community continued to search for answers into what led to that deadly shooting. here's nbc's mark potter. >> reporter: under police escort the hearse carrying the body of walter scott who was killed by a police officer arrived for the funeral. an overflow crowd of hundreds of mourners paying their respects. >> great family. that's how walter was. he wasn't perfect. but he was a great guy.
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>> reporter: for many it's a historic day. >> i think this will bring attention on a national level that we need to have some dialogue. and we're going to have to figure out in our communities how to take care of ourselves. >> reporter: during the service the pastor described scott's death as a hate crime motivated by prejudice and racism. he was gunned down a week ago after being pulled over by officer michael slager for a faulty taillight. >> it is our belief that at the time you see him run away on dash cam it's because he did not want to go back to jail for his failure to pay child support. >> reporter: early in the week a cell phone video surfaced showing scott running away a second time after an apparent altercation. and slager shooting him fatally in the back. slager was charged with murder. carla justice grew up next door to scott and is stunned by his death. >> it is just horrible. i can't even find the words to describe it. >> reporter: after the service the casket was
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moved to the cemetery as questions still linger over what actually sparked the shooting. and there are still questions also about the conduct of other officers who arrived at the shooting scene. did they offer proper first aid? did they file their reports truthfully? state agents say their investigation is ongoing. peter. >> mark potter in south carolina tonight. mark, thank you. for the first time tonight residents in the hard-hit community of fairdale, illinois, were allowed to return home. finally getting a look at the devastation caused by that monster tornado that ripped through their town earlier this week. it was a painful homecoming as we're learning new details about the dramatic moments before the deadly twister touched down. here's nbc's kevin tibbles with our report. >> reporter: the sun comes up in a corner of illinois torn apart by what the dark clouds delivered late thursday. >> [ bleep ]! he's over, he's over. >> reporter: an ef-4 tornado with winds up
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to 200 miles per hour slammed into neighboring towns of fairdale and rochelle, killing two, tearing homes and lives apart. today with a police escort residents were allowed to return to survey the damage and salvage what they could. jerry is grateful his family survived. >> just be thankful for what we got. >> reporter: at the firehouse in nearby kirkland, volunteers arrive by the dozens. and donations arrive by the truckload. >> toiletries are all along this line. >> reporter: for those left without a place to find needed supplies and stock up, it's all about community says assistant fire chief. >> you help out your neighbor. that's what people do. that's what makes it a great country. >> reporter: just minutes before the tornado hit people were enjoying dinner in this restaurant. but when they heard the sirens, they made their way to the basement. it likely saved 12 lives. the two top floors
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were ripped right off. and it was an hour and a half before waitress melissa and others would be rescued. >> it's more than fear, you know. it's just awe and shock. >> reporter: now the shock of what happened in just a few minutes is setting in. but people here vow their neighbors will not be alone. as they start to heal and rebuild. kevin tibbles, nbc news, rochelle, illinois. tonight, hillary clinton finds herself in a familiar position on the eve of a highly anticipated presidential campaign announcement. like the 2008 campaign a clinton re-run is being met with fanfare and some skepticism from voters. nbc's kristen has our report ton from clinton campaign headquarters in brooklyn. kristen, good evening. >> reporter: good evening. we are learning tonight that clinton's campaign message wil focus on ways she plans to help the middle class. and she'll draw sharp distinctions with republicans over the economy. it echoes president obama's strategy from back in 2012. all this as she tries
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once again to make history. >> who are you running for? >> hillary! >> reporter: with just hours until the big announcement, members of the super pac rallied in downtown manhattan. >> i am over the moon. we've been waiting for hillary for a long time. >> reporter: but will the presumed democratic front runner be a different candidate than she was eight years ago? congresswoman carolyn maloney says she already is. >> i feel that she can't take anything for granted. she knows that. i'm sure all of us know that. >> reporter: and across the east river in brooklyn at clinton's brand new campaign headquarters staffers put the final touches on tomorrow's rollout plan, which will include an announcement over twitter and a video. but on the streets of brooklyn a number of undecided voters. what do you need to hear for her to win your vote? >> i need to hear that we need to up that minimum wage. i need to hear that we need to increase better education.
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>> reporter: why are you undecided? >> because i'm not sure about her veracity. >> reporter: to try to win them over clinton's strategy will focus on small face-to-face gatherings in key states. she'll also play up her role as mom and grand mom, daughter chelsea telling elle magazine when equal hasn't yet included gender, there's a fundamental challenge there that i believe having our first woman president, whenever that is, will help resolve. >> she should want this to be coronation. this is something that she needs to earn. she needs to talk to the american public. >> hillary clinton has some explaining to do. >> reporter: gearing up for the announcement, the republican national committee released this video of their so-called stop hillary command center. and in iowa where clinton will make her first campaign stop, people rallied against her today. >> we don't coronate a nominee in the republican party. >> reporter: but iowa's democrats are equally energized. >> i'm a fan because i'm a big advocate for female leadership. >> rep
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has just obtained a memo that was sent from one of clinton's top advisers to her entire staff. it reads in part "we are a team, we are committed to helping each other succeed to deliver on our core purpose, a clear attempt to discourage some of the infighting that plagued clinton's last campaign," peter. >> and so it begins, kristen welker at the new clinton campaign headquarters. thank you. even though hillary clinton's campaign doesn't launch until tomorrow her opponents on the right are already taking aim. chuck todd, mode of "meet the press" sat down with one of those contenders, senator rand paul of kentucky. he didn't pull any punches when it came to the former secretary of state. >> i think the thing is about the clintons is that there's a certain sense that they think they're above the law. and i think there's also this grand hypocrisy for the clintons in a sense that we've got this whole thing, this war on women thing that they like to talk about. >> and chuck joins us now. chuck, you just wrapped up that conversation with senator paul. can he appeal to a broader base and
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ultimately become the republican's best bet to beat clinton? >> reporter: well, it's the argument that he makes. senator paul says he's the one that can go and win over young voters in a way no other republican can. he's the one believes he'll show up in places most republicans don't show up, like the inner cities and possibly win more of the african-american vote than other republicans can. so that's certainly his pitch to republican skeptics out there. when it comes to hillary clinton, nobody seems to be attacking her more on the campaign trail and on the stump than rand paul. and in fact we've learned this exclusively, he's going to be airing new campaign ads attacking hillary clinton in the early states some time next week. >> just getting started. chuck, thank you very much. you can catch much more of chuck's interview with senator rand paul and more of hillary clinton's campaign launch tomorrow on "meet the press". when "nbc nightly news" continues on this saturday, why that european vacation you've always dreamed about just got a lot more affordable. and later, decades
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in europe because of the dollar's buying power. here's cnbc's sharon epperson. >> reporter: for judy and richard of north carolina their six-week trip through europe couldn't have come at a better time. >> it's certainly a lot more fun to more money in pocket. that's for sure. >> reporter: today, paris is on sale. that's because for the first time in over ten years the euro is nearly equivalent to the dollar, making their getaway more than picture perfect. compared to last year they're paying 25% less on almost everything. with the extra savings, judy is splurging buying two pairs of shoes instead of one. >> there you go. >> reporter: according to a new survey by tripadviser, average travel costs for a week at popular european destinations have dropped 11%. and americans are taking notice. at liberty travel, liz is already seeing a 17% spike in european
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vacation bookings. if i want to take a vacation to europe this year, how much more would i be saving than last year? >> last year one week vacation to europe inclusive with air fare would have been about $3,500. this year you're talking about $2,500 per person, which is a considerable savings. >> reporter: if you've always wanted to see moscow, hotel rooms on average are more than 40% cheaper than a year ago. at just $79 a night. and it's not just europe. try going to brazil or taking an african safari where you can also find bargains thanks to the strong dollar. but if you are planning a trip for the summer, experts say book now. >> even though it seems a little early, people really should be booking travel right now because the dollar is so strong that you can prepay hotels, car rentals, theater tickets. >> to the american dollar. >> reporter: a dream vacation for them just got a lot sweeter. sharon epperson, nbc news, new york. and up next, a baseball game so long
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last night's baseball game in the bronx was nothing short of a marathon. the yankees and red sox went 19 innings, played for close to seven hours. not wrapping things up until after 2:00 in the morning with boston pulling out a 6-5 win. in terms of time this was the longest game in red sox history, the longest ever home game for the yanks. think about this, yankees first baseman mark teixeira he's celebrating a birthday today. that means he was 34 when the game started and 35 by the time everybody went home. now to a new spin on the family classic sitcom "all in the family" pushed the
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envelope in the 1970s. now another series "halal in the family" is hoping to do the same for a modern audience. nbc's anne thompson. >> reporter: the set and the sweater are familiar. but the faces and jokes are decidedly different. >> dad, i don't know if this is that scary. >> okay, you're a ghost in a burr ka, what will scare white people more than that? >> r to "hala family." the show is about how muslims are often perceived. creator and star aasif mandvi wants to change. >> musli low approv america ri i think it's something like 27% w little bit hig congress. >> reporte veteran of "the daily show" wher of doing a muslim cosby show was born. using the classic
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family sitcom formula. >> maybe you should stick to all you have to do is fast. >> you wouldn't last one day during the holy month -- oh, is that snickers? >> reporter: mandvi hopes humor will spread just as it did with the cosby show and "all in the family." >> something you it, you laugh, you think well that's funny. and it maybe starts a conversation. >> reporter: the four episodes in this web series are just six minutes. but offer a provocative message says "new york times" culture reporter. >> this is sort of perfectly designed for a six-minute attention span. the jokes and the story lines are meant to kind of fit in a very narrow space. >> reporter: this week he and his co-creator screen the shows at an event sponsored by new york radio station wnyc. looking for the reaction the show needs to succeed. >> if it's not funny, doesn't matter what the message is. it's not really going to resonate.
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>> reporter: hoping laughter is the best medicine to help cure misunderstanding and fear. anne thompson, nbc news, new york. and when we come back, a giant from a bygone era of film making a triumphant return to the theater. m making a triumphant return to the theater. meet the world's newest energy superpower. surprised? in fact, america is now the world's number one natural gas producer... and we could soon become number one in oil. because hydraulic fracturing technology is safely recovering lots more oil and natural gas. supporting millions of new jobs. billions in tax revenue... and a new century of american energy security. the new energy superpower? it's red, white and blue. log on to learn more. when the moment's spontaneous, why pause to take a pill? or stop to find a bathroom? cialis for daily use is approved to treat both erectile dysfunction and the urinary symptoms of bph, like needing to go frequently, day or night.
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of those majestic instruments were ultimately reduced to scrap. one of the original organs is making a comeback. here's nbc's erica hill with that story tonight from seattle. ♪ >> reporter: with the stroke of a few keys, an entire orchestra is summoned. bringing the silver screen to lifelong before hollywood figured out how to marry picture with sound. >> when the theater organ was in its heyday which was the teens and '20s, every theater had one. >> reporte was known as the cradle of the theater organ in the 20s. today this wurlitzer installed in the 1929 is the only one left. brought to life by organist teddy gibson at the theater's style and film series. >> there's nothing like an acoustic instrument and the way it kind of hits you in
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the gut. >> reporter: designed to fill this theater with sound, its power is hidden behind two large panels where 1,400 original wooden pipes, bells and chimes can recreate the sound of nearly every instrument. jake is one of about a half dozen volunteers who spent a collective 1,500 hours each year tuning and maintaining the precious piece. >> an instrument similar to this one has had lots of parts stolen from them in the '50s and '60s. so we're really fortunate we have all of the original pipes it came with. >> reporter: offering a rare chance to experience the early days of film in the most authentic way. >> it's a lost art. and it's important that we continue to bring that tradition out so modern audiences can understand what this great instrument can do. >> reporter: a commitment the paramount theater has happily made one show at a time. erica hill, nbc news, seattle.
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little bit of music to close your night. that's "nbc nightly news" for this saturday. i'm peter alexander reporting from new york. i'll see you tomorrow morning on "today." for all of us here at nbc news, have a good night. nbc bay area news starts now. good evening. i'm terry mcsweeney. peggy is off this evening. new details on a dramatic police chase through the streets of san francisco that left a pedestrian dead. started last night after police
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tried to pull over some robbery suspects. they took off, hitting two pedestrians and one car during a chase. christie smith is in san francisco with details on the victim, the suspects and what led up to the chase. >> good evening, terry. san francisco police say that the suspects are still outstanding at this hour after a wild night that included armed robberies, pursuit, and a woman was hit in the crosswalk where we are. she died from her injuries. that woman today has been identified as 42-year-old bridgette collector of san francisco who was in the crock at california and kearny. a second person was injured at a different location by the same car pull of robbery suspects last night. that person though expected to survive. police say this began just before 10:00 p.m. when the suspects committed an armed robbery, the latest in a series of robberies that happened over the past few days. there were two earlier that evening. an officer spotted the suspect car, tried to