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tv   NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt  NBC  May 3, 2022 2:06am-2:42am PDT

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now and why new york city is raising its covid alert level. the former nypd officer found guilty for his role in the capitol riot plus the january 6th panel seeking to question three gop lawmakers. what it hopes to learn. and in georgia, the special grand jury seated to investigate donald trump for alleged election interference the war on organized retail crime. the so-called corporate cops working undercover to take down shoplifting rings. and kicking off "inspiring america" week with the new soccer team created by some of america's most famous women >> announcer: this is "nbc nightly news" with lester holt good evening, everyone language is no barrier to understanding the stories of civilians newly evacuated from the besieged ukrainian city of mariupol their faces and eyes tell it all. the hunger, the incessant bombing, the emotional torment of
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being trapped in a dying city about 100 survivors were led to safety today from the infamous steel plant that has served as the last refuge in mariupol new commercial satellite images reveal the near complete destruction there. ukrainian soldiers say many more civilians remain trapped in the plant including children, all while russia claims to have intensified its attacks elsewhere. still u.s. defense officials say russia's progress in seizing territory in the east of ukraine has been anemic, moving into areas to declare victory only to leave and allow the ukrainians to reclaim them kelly cobiella is there tonight with the latest >> reporter: their stories of survival inside this steel plant are harrowing. "there were 40 of us," this woman says. "we boiled two buckets of soup, and that was our meal for the whole day. she's now made it out of the city, one of the roughly 100 civilians evacuated from the rubble of mariupol's steel plant.
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"all the time we were in the bunker, they were bombing," olga says new satellite images show the plant, like most of the city, almost completely destroyed by russian forces the last ukrainian soldiers holed up in the plant say more civilians are still trapped here "it's around 20 children we counted, and hundreds more adults," he says but tonight it's still not clear where the evacuees escorted by the u.n. and red cross staff will end up. russia says they were taken to russian-controlled territory and that those who want to leave can. ukraine's president zelenskyy tonight says he warned the u.n. the agreement with russia is that these people can come to ukrainian-controlled territory. "let's hope so," he says meanwhile, russian forces say they hit nearly 800 targets in ukraine in 24 hours, including shipments of western military aid the shelling in kharkiv relentless,
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valentina, a medic in the city, told me. >> we haven't safety >> you don't have safety >> yeah. you may die at next minute it's our life now. >> reporter: though tonight a senior u.s. military official describes the russian progress in the eastern donbas region as minimal and tonight russia is facing outrage from israel the country demanding an apology after the russian foreign minister appeared on italian television saying hitler was part jewish the israeli foreign minister calling the comments unforgivable, scandalous, and a terrible historical error. >> kelly joins us again from eastern ukraine. kelly, now there's word that europe might be willing to stop buying russian oil, which has been a huge economic lifeline for president putin. >> reporter: yes diplomats tell nbc news that an oil embargo could be announced as early as this week after germany reversed its opposition but importantly,
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lester, that would not include a ban on russian gas. lester. >> kelly cobiella tonight, thank you. here at home, authorities in alabama have issued an arrest warrant for a corrections officer after they say she disappeared with an inmate suspected of capital murder an intense nationwide manhunt is now under way. gabe gutierrez has the latest >> reporter: she'd been named employee of the year four times, but tonight alabama corrections officer vicky white is facing new charges, including permitting or facilitating the escape of an inmate. the arrest warrant comes after investigators say she disappeared friday from this jail west of huntsville along with prisoner casey white, no relation. >> i would like to emphasize that this case is now a major case for the united states marshals service. >> reporter: police say casey white is hard to miss, 6'9", 260 pounds, and that he's often changed his appearance here he is just last week as he awaited trial on capital murder charges he was already serving
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time for a separate 2015 crime spree that included a home invasion and carjacking according to authorities, vicky white falsely claimed she was transporting him from jail to the courthouse for a mental health evaluation today the sheriff said her patrol car was spotted on surveillance video minutes later nowhere near that courthouse before being abandoned at this shopping center. >> this is not the vicky white we know by any stretch of the imagination. she has been an exemplary employee. >> reporter: the sheriff now says investigators are looking into whether the pair may have been romantically involved or whether she helped him escape for another reason. >> we know she participated now, whether she did that willingly or if she was coerced, threatened somehow to participate in this escape, not really sure >> reporter: the sheriff says the day she vanished was supposed to be vicky white's last day at work she filed retirement papers the day before after selling her home lester. >> gabe, thank you.
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new and dangerous weather threats tonight. severe thunderstorms, large hail, and tornadoes likely again in parts of kansas, oklahoma, southwest missouri, and western arkansas 8 million people could be affected. even more at risk tomorrow for severe thunderstorms from western kentucky through southwest pennsylvania. no letup tonight in new mexico where large wildfires are growing across the state, forcing thousands to evacuate. more than a dozen major fires are blazing across the west with over a million acres burned nationwide here's miguel almaguer >> reporter: the series of exploding, out-of-control wildfires tearing across new mexico is tonight poised to get even more destructive. two fires merging into one monster blaze has alone torched over 100,000 acres. >> it's devastating. you don't know what's going to be there. >> reporter: with 65-mile-an-hour winds at its back and drought conditions in
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its path, nearly 300 structures are gone. thousands fleeing the flames >> we have nothing to go back to >> reporter: as thick smoke smothers the santa fe region, whipping winds will again fan ferocious flames today some 4 million people in four states are under red flag warnings or fire watches. 50-mile-an-hour gusts fueling some of the 15 major blazes burning >> the fire threat is dire it is catastrophic it is historic, and we need to get out of harm's way >> reporter: still early in this disastrous fire season, so far over a million acres, the size of rhode island, has gone up in smoke twice as much land as this time last year. and with winds shifting, even more will be lost >> we do have our lives, and i am thankful to god for that but i miss my home, and it's just gone. >> reporter: adding insult to injury, one of the two fires creating the largest in new mexico was purposely set as a prescribed burn.
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but after kicking out of control, what firefighters were trying to prevent is exactly what they are now facing miguel almaguer, nbc news as covid cases rise again in just about every state, hospitalizations are starting to go up as well though nowhere near the highest levels we've seen. experts are also keeping a watchful eye on new variants emerging abroad. emilie ikeda has more. >> reporter: tonight, covid infections are climbing coast to coast, and it's not just the number of cases. hospitalizations in parts of the country are starting to tick up too the cdc now urging residents in 56 high-risk counties to mask up. two-thirds of those areas are in the state of new york. >> i'm not here to stand here and say we're looking at shutdowns. i've said i'm going to protect the health of new yorkers. >> reporter: nationally caseloads are only a fraction of what we saw in the winter though new york city's recent numbers rival last year's delta surge.
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still the upward trend isn't stopping the season's most watched formal events, from fashion's biggest night at the met to the weekend's white house correspondents' dinner notably absent was america's top doc, who backpedaled earlier comments when he said we're out of the pandemic phase >> that does not mean that the pandemic is over by no means is it over. >> reporter: a possible sign of the future, south africa, where omicron first popped up. research there, which has not yet been peer reviewed, shows new subvariants are dodging antibodies gained from previous infection. >> it's not going to disappear. we're going to have to learn to live with this virus as we do with influenza. >> so what is important to know about the cases we're seeing right now and the severity >> the cases we're seeing now are not severe for the most part if you're still unvaccinated, you could get a severe case >> reporter: a mutating virus blurring the path to normalcy emilie ikeda, nbc news
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in washington, the january 6th committee is asking more republican congressmen to testify about the attack as a former new york city police officer who took part was convicted today of assault and other charges. ali vitali has late details for us >> reporter: tonight, a jury finds ex-nypd officer thomas webster guilty on six counts, including assaulting a d.c. police officer on january 6th. the first assault conviction in these trials this as new details emerge from the house select committee about republican lawmakers' possible roles in the insurrection the house select committee sending letters to three house members asking for their cooperation. mo brooks, andy biggs, and former president trump doctor ronny jackson. >> it's not just general, gosh, we'd like to know what's on your mind, but specific areas of inquiry. >> reporter: members of far-right groups texted on the 6th about protecting jackson, writing, if anyone inside, cover him. he has critical data to protect
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meanwhile, the committee saying biggs attended meetings with the trump white house about efforts to illegally overturn the election results he also allegedly sought a presidential pardon for those activities both jackson and biggs saying they won't participate. and in fulton county, georgia, the legal battle begins into whether trump and others tried to illegally influence the 2020 election. >> you shall give true answers. >> reporter: prosecutors there seating a special grand jury today and here in washington, more interview requests still to come. >> we will ask more than three people. >> any senators? >> yes >> reporter: that would be a first for the committee. still grappling with if they're willing to subpoena their colleagues. >> it's not off the table. i don't see how a member of congress can not uphold the constitution in light of what occurred on january 6th. >> reporter: thompson also told me the committee still wants to hear from the top house republican, kevin mccarthy that's another letter we expect in the coming days as the january 6th committee barrels toward its june 9th start for public hearings.
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lester >> ali, thank you. in 60 seconds, with the new interest rate hike expected this week, what you can do to ease the pain
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back now with the growing battle over labor unions amazon workers at a new york warehouse voting no on unionizing a month after employees at a nearby facility voted to form the first u.s. union in the company's history. and as more starbucks franchises across the country unionize, the baristas union is accusing interim ceo howard schultz of violating labor laws by threatening to withhold benefits. schultz has said new benefits couldn't legally be given to unionized workers without a separately negotiated contract. also tonight, the federal reserve may be about to make your life more expensive. it's expected to raise interest rates this week to tame inflation. tom costello now with how it may impact the price you pay. >> reporter: in salt lake city, brothers tyler and dylan green
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feel like the economy is stacked against them and their new company, cache, that makes recreational accessories for tailgates. supply chain delays in china, the high cost of business loans, and skyrocketing inflation are eating them alive. >> as a business owner, gaining more capital will cost us even more and make our margins that are already slim that much slimmer. >> reporter: and new loans are about to get even more expensive with the federal reserve poised to raise rates by a half point this week after a quarter-point hike in march the fed trying to knock down 40-year-high inflation that americans are feeling every day. >> we understand that high inflation imposes significant hardship, especially on those least able to meet the higher costs of essentials like food, housing, and transportation >> reporter: but the economy already shrank in the first quarter the stock market, higher today, has been in a deep slide this year >> this is one of the worst and most complex situations that the federal reserve could
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face because they are effectively trying to reduce demand without tipping over the economy. >> reporter: with higher interest rates making credit cards and loans more expensive, experts recommend consolidating your loans. if you're shopping for a new car or home, lock in your loan rate in the next 36 hours and maybe consider postponing that big purchase >> i think this might not be the right time. the uncertainty would make me nervous to go ahead and tell them make large purchases >> reporter: the fed's challenge, hitting the brakes on the economy without sending it into recession >> tom, meantime, diesel fuel prices have hit an all-time record high. what's behind that >> yeah, $5.32 a gallon now analysts blame a shortage of refining capacity and the russian oil embargo. higher diesel costs mean higher shipping costs, which then sends prices even higher for food and everyday products. lester >> tom costello, thank you. up next, battling retail theft our investigation. why stores are turning to corporate cops to
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try to stem the surge.
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all right. we're back now with our investigation of the war on organized retail crime a sophisticated network of shoplifters stealing billions in goods, not only driving up costs but putting lives at risk. vicky nguyen now on how retailers are fighting back and the concerns >> reporter: this may look like a disorganized dash. men running out of a pharmacy with bags of over-the-counter products but police say this is a professional crew
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connected to a six-state crime spree. retailers estimate organized retail crime cost them $68 billion in 2019. such a growing problem, chains like walmart, target, home depot and others employ teams of so-called corporate cops they work with actual cops and federal agents to gather intel and even surveil suspects, recording undercover video like this two women moving stolen baby formula in florida. and these photos, evidence in a federal case against an atlanta man sentenced to nearly six years in prison for selling millions' worth of stolen products online at least half a dozen states have set up task forces that include corporate cops the idea, build bulletproof cases and share information with prosecutors to go after crime rings. >> these are professional thieves they're going to steal $50,000 to $60,000 a day. >> reporter: ben dugan leads the corporate investigations team for cvs. he says they go after big fish connected to crime rings worth a million dollars or more.
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>> it's an epidemic. it's threatening the safety of employees, the safety of customers, the profitability and sustainability of businesses across all of retail. >> reporter: these thieves steal everything from cold medicine to power tools, even high-end goods. all of it quickly and profitably resold in online marketplaces where it's hard to track down sellers i think the average consumer doesn't think of it on the same level as the mafia or a drug cartel. do you >> absolutely. 100% this money is used to buy weapons. this money is used to do the same thing that narcotics money is used to do. >> reporter: nypd captain tariq shepherd leads the metro organized retail crime alliance, a network of stores, law enforcement, and local prosecutors who share data across three states what do you say to people who say, well, this is a victimless crime? >> absolutely not. there's a lot of dangers in it. >> reporter: he points to stolen items like diabetic test strips or baby formula that can be harmful if improperly stored and resold on the black
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market. >> there's so many different types of products in which buying stolen merchandise could be dangerous to the consumer but also anytime you have a high volume of theft like this, the retailers have to make that up. >> vicky joining me now. are there any concerns these corporate cops could put individual rights at risk >> lester, some legal experts say these corporate cops might overstep their powers. unlike sworn police officers, they can question you without reading you your rights so the concern is you might say something incriminating that prosecutors might later use against you in court. >> vicky nguyen, thanks so much. up next, we'll introduce you to a team of women who are leveling the field and "inspiring america."
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we're kicking off our "inspiring america" week with l.a.'s new soccer team founded by some of the most famous women in sports and entertainment. here's gadi schwartz >> reporter: in the city of angels, a new team's in town on a mission. angel city football club winning their debut home opener in front of a sold-out crowd. and on this team, powerful women drive the plays on and off the field. its star roster starting with its owners, co-founded by natalie portman and attracting investors like jennifer garner, billie jean king, abby wambach, serena williams, and mia hamm. what does tonight feel like >> well, excitement. it's a long time coming. >> reporter: the team's debut coming 50 years after the
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passage of title ix, a law aimed at leveling the playing field for women's sports and a road paved by greats like billie jean king, who says it's another step in the right direction. is it enough >> it's never enough we're just getting started. we're only at a tipping point in women's sports, but this is a huge example of that tonight. >> reporter: the new team already building a fan base transcending generations. >> i love soccer, and i want to support the women who are out there doing it. >> i think the women are better than the men. they have better sportsmanship. >> reporter: this 9-year-old's mom played basketball in college and remembers when title ix passed she says today is a new turning point. >> women have really taken the stage in a powerful way, and it's because of the history of everyone who has gotten us to this place. >> reporter: for soccer superstar abby wambach, this is a beginning. >> for little girls out there, looking, wondering what they can be in their life, not just soccer players. you can be an executive. you can be an owner. >> reporter: a
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history-making debut for a team built by women, already inspiring the next generation gadi schwartz, nbc news, los angeles. and don't miss the 2022 inspiration list this saturday on nbc, msnbc, and cnbc, and sunday on telemundo and across streaming platforms. that's "nightly news." thank you for watching, everyone take care of yourself ♪♪ and i can't stop thinkin' about ♪ ♪ about the way things used to be ♪ ♪ and i can't stop thinkin' about ♪
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♪ about the love that you made to me ♪ ♪ and i can't get you outta my head ♪ ♪ how in the world will i begin ♪ ♪ to let you walk right out my life ♪ ♪ and blow my heart away ♪ ♪ and i can't stop carin' about ♪ ♪ about the apple of my eye ♪ ♪ and i can't stop doin' without ♪ ♪ without the center of my life ♪ ♪ and i can't get you out of my head ♪ ♪ and i know i can't pretend ♪ ♪ that i won't die if you decide ♪ ♪ you won't see me again ♪ ♪ if i never feel you in my arms again ♪ ♪ if i never feel your tender kiss again ♪ ♪ if i never hear i love you now and then ♪ ♪ will i never make love to you
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once again ♪ ♪ please understand ♪ ♪ if love ends ♪ ♪ then i promise you i promise you that ♪ ♪ that i shall never breathe again ♪ ♪ breathe again breathe again ♪ ♪ no, no, no, that i shall never breathe again ♪ ♪ breathe again ♪♪ [cheers and applause] >> kelly: hello, hello, hello, welcome to "the kelly clarkson show." my goal is to look like lester's guns. that is my goal in the gym, it
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never works out. that was "breathe again" by toni braxton, one of her biggest international hits of all time. there are still many hits by her that are so good. what is your connection to that one? >> hi, kelly. thank you so much for covering that song. i actually have a pretty special and quite unique connection to the song. it reminds me of my mom. when i was a kid, i would wake up to the smell of pine-sol, bleach, and whatever else my mom was using to clean the house. and i knew it was going to be a good day because my mom had just met my stepdad, she was happy, she was in love. whenever she was happy, i knew we were going on a shopping trip. so whenever i heard the song in the morning, she would play it on repeat, we would get up, get dressed, go shopping, spend the entire day together. we would spend some very meaningful quality time with one another that we don't get to do so as much today. i really appreciate you for covering that for me. >> kelly: i love that story. [applause] yours was pine-sol, mindless pledge. i had the smell of pledge in my
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home. i love that. i love a clean house because of my mom. music has memory coming and open it such a special thing. i love music for so many reasons, thank you so much. that was a beautiful story. ever by date, it is a good day, it is a great day here on "the kelly clarkson show." i'm so excited about it. we've got the very funny and talented sasheer zamata in the house. so funny, so talented. i'm especially excited for our first guests, because my sister is going to hate me. she loves these women is much as i do. between them, they've enough awards to fill up the back of my pickup truck. you can see them together in the very funny and emotional, bins where the shell, "grace and frankie," which is now the longest -- i know, maybe they thought they were coming somewhere else, but i got them on my show. i don't know how. this is the longest running series ever on netflix.
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give it up before jane fonda and lily tomlin. [cheers and applause] ♪ ♪ >> kelly: i'm so happy to see you. give it up! i mean, you complement each other. did you plan it? >> no. >> kelly: you walked out and i was like a nice earthy tones. i am so excited you are here. >> we are excited too. >> very. >> kelly: i've never rubbed anything in my sisters face and this will be the thing. she's the one who actually got me addicted to your show and i was like, oh, my god. it's just such a great show.
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congratulations on the show. so you have been doing it -- and i want to tell you, jessie over there, my singer i work with, she is celebrating your show with a martini. she loves you. she is usually -- everybody kept going, so professional. she is usually -- this is amazing. she wanted to celebrate y'all. we are excited and honored you are here. anyway, you've been doing this for seven years now. >> longest running original netflix show ever. [cheers and applause] >> kelly: i know y'all met before, so when did you first meet? >> i was developing a movie called to "nine to five." >> never heard of it. [laughter] >> none of that existed. it wasn't the television person. i was developing that as a dark comedy. and i heard lily tomlin's
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downtown l.a. doing a one-woman show called the "appearing nightly" and i went by myself. and i was -- i was just knocked off my feet. i was totally smitten by her. and i first met her going back stage and i said to myself, i'm not making a movie about secretaries and less she is in it. so i thought, we are going to have to change everything. [laughter] >> kelly: that is how you got the job. do you remember the first time you met? >> yes, i was totally knocked over because i was such a fan of fonda's and i had a cool hairdo and everything. so when she came backstage, it was really exciting for me. she was sort of trepidations, but i was like, can i get an autograph, can i get, like a note to my mother? >> kelly: [laughs] asking for all these things but that's amazing. is it cool working with dolly

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