tv ABC World News Now ABC December 15, 2010 2:35am-4:00am EST
bandit dashes across the casino at the bellagio after parking his motorcycle outside near the valet just before 4:00 a.m. >> he entered the ka soon know and went directly to a craps table where he confronted evidently several patrons with a firearm. >> reporter: metro police tell us the heist took no more than three minutes. took off heading west on flamingo. >> that quick. >> reporter: employees called 911 before the man even left the property. yet he managed to get away with over $1.5 million in gambling chips. ranging in value anywhere from 100 bucks to $25,000. but police believe this isn't his first holdup. in fact, they say he's the same suspect that robbed a sun coast casino poker cage last thursday, stealing $20,000 in cash. >> the speck is described as a white male adult, 510 tnch, 220 pounds. he was carrying a handgun in both of them and was last seen wearing a white motorcycle helmet with multiple stripes on
it. >> reporter: authorities say six casinos were robbed in 2008, nine last year, so far ten this year. and while the number of incidents has gone up slightly they point out that this is no cause for alarm. >> so the number's still relatively low. this is not an epidemic that we see valley-wide. the father of three boys who have been missing since thanksgiving will face parental kidnapping charges today in michigan. 39-year-old john skelton stopped fighting extradition in ohio tuesday as he was driven back to his home state. his sons andrew, alexander, and tanner were last seen playing in his backyard. the boys' mother spoke exclusively to our detroit station wxyz. >> what would you say to your boys watching out there right now? what would you tell them? >> i love you, i miss you, i want you to come home. >> i know this is a tough one but what about john? what do you say to that guy? >> no comment. >> she also says she believes her sons are still alive though
authorities say they don't see the case having a positive outcome. . could be known by the end of this week. easy approval is expected today in the senate. >> democratic efforts to rewrite the plan in the house appear to be fading. john hendren joins us now from washington with details. good morning, john. >> reporter: good morning, rob and vinita. it's not exactly the most popular bill of the year. senator after senator stood up and heaped criticism on the president's tax cut compromise. >> i am opposed to those provisions that give i think overly generous tax reductions to the wealthiest among us. >> do i feel passionate that the people who earn over $1 million don't need a tax cut? you bet i do. >> most conservatives are upset about the unfunded extension of unemployment benefits. >> this is ridiculous. >> reporter: most of those critics were supporting the bill. monday night in a key test vote, senators let it move forward by an overwhelming majority, 83-15. they are now expected to pass
the bill within the next 24 hours. >> the time has come where we have to start voting and doing important things that are so important to complete. >> reporter: the bill's supporters agree on two things. it's less than perfect, and it's worth passing anyway. >> the bottom line is, this senate will overwhelmingly pass this package. >> reporter: the real test will be in the house where few democrats support the plan. the white house expect enough conservative democrats will join republicans and push it through. >> the president's had some good conversations and i think we're on the path to dealing wi inget bill through the house and on the president's desk. >> reporter: making it a christmas present worth $858 billion. democrats now plan to meet and talk strategy on the bill. many want to change it by jacking up the inheritance tax rate. but it's not clear at all that they have the votes. rob and vinita? >> throughout the course of this debate we've certainly heard the
phrase bush-era tax cuts. interestingly enough, president bush was interviewed monday on a radio interview, and he actually said it might stand a better chance if you stop referencing them as bush-era tax cuts. >> he does support the tax cuts too. since leaving the white house he's tried to stay out of politics but he did say, i support these tax cuts. just changing the name maybe, we'll see. now to an oklahoma town where the grinch who stole christmas turned out to be a skunk. >> thousands of dollars of donated toys are ruined after they were sprayed by a smelly, black and white, four-legged intruder. those gifts were for needy children and were stored in an outdoor shed. >> now volunteers are scrambling to replace the items before friday when the kids are expecting all those now-smelly presents. >> i don't think febreze is going to cut it. >> no, start over. >> tomato juice? i've heard that doesn't even work wither. we'll be right back with more work wither. we'll be right back with more "world news now." wwwwwwwwww wwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww n honking.
around his house. these people chose freedom over restrictions. independence over limitations. they chose mobility. they chosehe scooter store. and this is the team of mobility experts who made it all happen. ii great news, you've been approved for payment. dr. cruz, i'm calling on behalf ofmarie stanford. and they can make it happen for you. hi, i'm doug harrison, if you're living with limited mobility, call the scooter store today. i promise, no other company will work harder to make you mobile or do more to ensure your total satisfaction. i expected they'd help me file some paperwork with medicare and my insurance. i never expected them to be so nice or work so hard to get me a power chair at no cost to me. if we qualify you and medicare denies your claim for a w scooter or power chair, i'll give it to you absolutely free. that's the scooter store guarantee.
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are switching from tylenol to advil. to learn more and get your special offer, go to takeadvil.com. take action. take advil. welcome back, everything. julian assange, the founder of wikileaks, has not only angered governments but also militaries and civilians with the release of all those classified documents. now though he's even angering his own employees. >> the revolt has gotten so bad assange's ex-colleagues are now starting their own rival website called openleaks. what is behind this mutiny? brian ross investigates. >> my name is andrew schmidt, this is julian assange. >> reporter: they were close colleagues just one year ago. now daniel schmidt has split with wikileaks. setting up a rival site called openleaks.
after raising questions about julian assange's handling of the wikileaks money and his newfound celebrity status. he talked with me from berlin via a computer hookup. >> he's certainly different today from the way that i met him. >> when we were putting this together, daniel and i -- >> reporter: he began working with assange in 2007 when the young australian was little-known outside the world of hackers. but the release of previously secret pentagon tapes and state department cables put wikileaks on the map. and in short order, assange became the public face of the website. seen in a new swedish documentary primping for television appearances with a new hairstyle almost every week. behind the scenes former colleagues say the real assange was a little different and began to act like a dictator. >> his way or the highway. >> reporter: ironically, he says
assange became enraged about leaks about him that he thought was coming from inside wikile s wikileaks. was this you? i didn't expect to newsweek or other media, he responded. i am investigating a serious security breach, assange replied. are you refusing to answer? >> he's not the best person to deal with criticism, i would say. >> reporter: the exchange ended with, you behave like some kind of emperor or slave trader. assange -- you are suspended for one month, effective immediately. >> for being disloyal to the organization, and as he calls it, insubordinate. >> reporter: others who have split with assange say his ego has gone out of control, including herbert storisson of iceland. >> if you have a problem with me, you can kiss off. >> reporter: the most serious issue, say potential associates, is the secrecy surrounding the group's money. where it comes from and where it goes. >> i'd like to know myself what has been happening behind the curta curtain. >> reporter: another of wikileaks' early founders says
assange's goal from the beginning was to make a lot of money and seek personal fame. >> he loves to provoke people. he loves to make dramatic statements. >> reporter: former wikileaks members say the person being lost in all this is army private bradley manning. accused of providing secret u.s. documents to wikileaks. assange's critics want to know what happened to the some $50,000 that wikileaks pledged to give to private manning's defense fund? >> i can only say we pressured for that money to be transferred for quite a while. >> did he ever tell you why the money has not been transferred when he pressed you on it? >> no, he did not comment on that, he said it was all taken care of. >> what does that say to you? >> that to me says it's time to leave this organization because it's not heading in a healthy direction. >> reporter: as of this weekend, the private manning defense fund said it had yet to receive anything from wikileaks. and a wikileaks spokesperson acknowledged there had been a delay. >> for wikileaks to call the
people to donate money and not deliver. >> reporter: a member of the parliament in iceland who has worked to establish a safe haven for journalists in that country and was one of the early backers of wikileaks. after working closely with assange, she told me from she has become deeply disillusioned. >> very many people have forgotten the fact that 200 days. in his defense, struggling to get together the money to pay the lawyers. >> reporter: at the same time, wikileaks is raising money for assange's defense fund. he's facing charges of rape in sweden. a case that he says is meant to silence him and wikileaks. but some of assange's former colleagues say the rape case has nothing to do with wikileaks and that assange should have resigned. >> i don't think that is justifiable. and that's why i did suggest that he would step aside.
>> reporter: instead, she and the others have quit wikileaks and are now working to set up their own rival website to be called openleaks. a spokesperson for wikileaks said the former members are people with an agenda and that their description of julian assange is not accurate. brian ross, abc news, new york. >> people who know him say it was always kind of his goal, assange's goal, to get incarcerated because that would add to his fame in a way. >> of course with incarceration comes bail. it was close to $400,000. several wealthy supporters actually chipped in together to free him and one of those people, interestingly enough, is michael moore. of course the controversial filmmaker. coming up, public school students who refuse to work up a sweat. >> why they're getting away with opting out of gym class. you're watching "world news now."
knew at least one person who hated gym class. you may be hearing fewer complaints from kids today. that's because only five states now require kids to take physical education. >> but is giving students the right to opt out of pe the right thing to do, considering the nation's ongoing obesity epidemic? gym teachers of course don't think so. here's david wright. >> reporter: for many of us, gym class conjures up memories of abuse and the smell of sweat socks. who wouldn't want to opt out? pop culture certainly recognizes that. >> i have a note. >> reporter: these days, not breaking a sweat is easier than ever. only five states require physical education, in every grade, k-12. at a time when the first lady is leading the fight against childhood obesity, gym teachers say the crisis goes beyond the cafeteria. >> 80% to 90% of all parents, teachers and students believe that physical education should be available on a daily basis. what we need to do is create policy that allows that to
happen. >> reporter: schools do have a role to play in fighting childhood owe bealspy but phys ed teachers say it's not enough to focus just on nutrition. students are now allowed to take their gym classes online. the laptop is replacing the locker room. virtual sports teams aren't far behind. if you can take the class online, would you like that? >> yeah! >> reporter: their physical education teacher doesn't blame them. >> it immediately conjures up, i can do this by my computer? right next to my facebook account and my twitter account? they're thinking, i can get out of working out. >> reporter: but it's his job to motivate them anyway. david wright, abc news, van nuys, california. >> you know, it got us to thinking what would it be like to combine the digital world with the workout world. >> we should go for it. let's do it. ready? come on, now. >> i work out regularly.
>> look at her. oh, that's the situation, baby. >> all right, i think you've seen enough of this. coming up, the naked truth about a postal worker's arrest. >> and shooting wedding videos -- oh! >> are you checking me out? >> let's just enjoy this moment. 50% more bristles for big bold lashes. make your look even bolder with smoky shadowblast. 6 brilliant shade duos. a unique dual ended stick. for colorful smoky eyes. smoky shadowblast plus lshblast. the smoky eye made easy. from easy, breezy, beautiful covergirl. and try ew liquiline blast liner to intensify your smoky eye. sleep is here, on the wings of lunesta. and if you wake up often in the middle of the night... rest is here, on the wings of lunesta.
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world news now delivers your "morning papers." >> and welcome back, everybody. time for the "morning papers." we did this the other morning with twitter and their top trends of the year. it's google's turn to come out with their list of what was hot in 2010. in case you're wondering who the top searched people in the world were on google, get this, 400 million searches every day. number six, i'm doing the top five, you were so close. next year, next year. here we go. from fifth to first here. hendricks, mickey menage, do we
know who he is by the way? >> i don't know. you need to google him. >> keisha, and justin bieber continues his huge run. he was number one, the most googled dude of 2010. rounding out the list, other things here, this chat roulette, this website lets you hook up with a random person on the web to have a conversation. ipad was big. katy perry, twitter, facebook, all this was big in 2010. >> fascinating to know that people are more often googled than things. i would have thought gulf oil spill, that it wouldn't be just a celebrity. but i guess that tells us a lot about what we're interested in also. >> the top searched politician is south carolina governor nikki haley, the second american-indian governor in the country. >> it's like a bad setup for an adult movie. what basically happened is a postal worker walks into a woman's office, realizes she's unhappy, and thinks i'm going to
come back totally naked. and she flips out. she says basically, give me the mail and get out of here. the guy's name is mailman dave, and he says he basically will nowpy a $681 fee. he says he thought he was cheering up the 21-year-old female employee of a law firm who seemed to be stressed out. so he thought, you know what cheers up a lot of people, nudity. i'll come back totally naked. >> dave has some game. he was brave to do that with this cold weather. >> i think the fact that she held out her hand and says, give me the mail and get out of here. he says he totally didn't mean anything by it. he was trying to make her happy. >> buck naked on the boor step is always an innocent move. the swiss bank called ubsag sends their employees a 43-page code how to impress customers. these are dos and don'ts. for women, wear your jacket button, when sitting the button should be unfastened.
florida face-off. a gunman holds up a school board meeting. the ordeal easily deadly end. impressive credentials. >> we captain american airlines. >> really? cool. >> who exposed this man as a fake? and, inexpensive high-tech gifts. from a musical shirt -- >> how cool is that? >> to gloves for iphone users. it's wednesday, december 15th. >> from abc news, this is "world news now." >> it's my favorite topic this time of year.
cheap gifts. >> have you ever been out using your iphone and you can't touch the touch screen? there's something special in those gloves so you don't have to take your gloves off but they're thin enough that you can maneuver around the keypad. >> it works even though your hands are freezing, gloves and use the phone. >> more excuse to walk with your iphones are -- whatever they are. >> good morning everybody on this wednesday. i'm rob nelson. >> i'm vinita nair. school board members in the florida panhandle are counting their blessings after a dramatic encounter with a gunman. >> abc's station camera was rolling at that man opened fire during a routine school board meeting. we should warn you some of this video is pretty disturbing. steven portnoy has been following the story since it broke. >> reporter: police in panama city had to cleelsly review our affiliate's videotape of that frightening meeting just to determine what happened. the gunman, 56-year-old clay duke, seen here in a blue jacket, started addressing the panama city board members just
after a group of students left. >> there are only about 20 people plus the school board members in there. >> reporter: then a strange stunt. you can see the spray paint on the back wall. >> i saw him come out, spray paint a big girl with a line or "v" through it. it wasn't nice. then he said, i have a motion for you. and like pulled out his gun. >> reporter: claiming the contradict fired his wife, clay flashed a handgun and ordered all of the women in the room to get out. >> that's when i hit the floor. i like ducked. it was probably one of the most scary moments in my life. >> reporter: when she left the room, wmbb reporter nadine yates left her camera rolling. at one point the only female member of the school board crept behind clay and hit him with her purse. board members pleaded with clay to put his gun down. he pointed it directly at the superintendent and began to fire. >> please don't. please don't. please -- >> reporter: the shots missed. no one was hurt. and just then, a school safety
officer who was also in the room fired back, taking duke down. police say the wounded gunman then fatally shot himself. board members say they knew nothing of clay's claim that his wife had been fired and they believe he clearly had a death wish. records show clay served time in prison a decade ago for aggravated stalking and other crimes. vinita, rob? >> unbelievable story. a shoot-out at a strip mall in sacramento has left a 2-year-old boy without his mother. gunfire broke out when two armed men entered a barbershop. two other men inside were also armed and returned fire. a spray bullet struck a 35-year-old woman just as she was putting her son into their car. the boy was unharmed and police are still investigating. police in las vegas say it took an armed bandit just three minutes to pull off a hollywood-style heist. surveillance cameras caught the man running out of the bellagio resort early tuesday. he got away with at least $1.5 million in casino chips. it's believed that just last week the same bandit held up
another vegas casino and stole $20,000 in cash. wikileaks founder julian assange is still in custody this morning even though a british judge has granted him bail. the international legal battle over sexual misconduct charges in sweden, though, is far from over. lama hasan has the latest now from london. >> reporter: julian assange was declared a free man and granted bail on tuesday. but just for a couple of hours. a number of prominent figures, including socialites, journalists and a british film director all offered to post bond worth over $350,000. until this. the latest twist in the case. >> finally, after two hours, we've heard that the swedes won't abide by the umpire's decision. and they want to put mr. assange through yet more trouble, more expense, more hurdles. they clearly will not spare any
expense but to keep mr. assange in jail. >> reporter: the swedish authorities appealed against the decision to grant the wikileaks founder bail. assange isn't going anywhere. he remains behind bars as his team continues to fight the appeal. the 39-year-old has already spent a week in jail since being remanded in custody last tuesday. without access to computers, the internet, or newspapers. no access to the outside world. >> he's requested to have a computer so he can help research the case. that was denied. he's only been allowed three visits. and he's only been allowed three phone calls. >> reporter: assange is fighting extradition to sweden on allegations of rape and sexual assault with two separate women in august this year. he denies any wrongdoing. despite his absence, wikileaks continues to release more diplomatic cables. lama hasan, abc news, london. former white house chief of staff rahm emanuel has undergone
12 hours of questioning over whether chicago's really his permanent hometown. some residents are trying to knock him off the ballot of the mayor's race in the city because of the time rahm spent in his old job. the latest poll shows he has an early lead in the mayor easily race. we could knee the fate of the president's controversial tax plan by the end of the week. the agreement is expected to sail to victory today in the senate. and despite major misgivings by democratic leaders the house plans to vote in the next few days. the $858 billion bill would extend bush-era tax cuts and renewed benefits for the long-time unemployed. that royal caribbean ship that was battered by high winds and waves has finally reached safe harbor. now we're getting a first look at the damage inside that luxury ship. nick watt reports from the island of malta. >> reporter: this is the first view inside "the brilliance of the seas" since this incident happened.
they've got it pretty much back to normal. people enjoying an early evening drink. most of the debris has been cleaned up. remember, furniture was flying, there was shattered glass on the floors, they have worked very hard. the beauty salon, the video arcade, and the discotheque. the christmas tree is back up now. imagine how bad the wind and waves had to be to make a ship this size, 3,000 people on board, to make it list 15 degrees. those seas were very, very heavy. people are happy again. two days back to barcelona and then the cruise ends. for them, it's now all free. >> that was abc's nick watt. royal caribbean is offering passengers on "the brilliance of the seas" ship full refounds. that will cost the cruise line millions. a tiny town in oregon is recovering after a powerful twister tore through, surprising everyone. the downtown area was hit hardest with several businesses
destroyed or severely damaged. six families were displaced but there were no serious injuries. tornados in oregon are almost unheard of. hundreds of canadian motorists are finally home after spending up to 25 hours stuck in their cars in southern ontario. they were rescued by buss and military helicopters after blowing snow closed the highway. you can see you can barely see the shot there. one of those rescued was philosophical about the delay. he said, what can i do? i'm not impressed, it's can de. with that, here's a look at your wednesday weather. 1 to 5 inches of snow in the twin cities, des moines, and far fargo. freezing rain in little rock, memphis, nashville, and southern kentucky. showers from new orleans to alabama. snow in northern new england, the sierra range, and in the northern rockies 16 in minneapolis. 26 in chicago. 20s in boston and new york. record cold in the southeast.
miami 62 degrees. as this awful cold snap drags on, the idea of a warm spot isn't just appealing to us humans. >> take a look at these gray bumps in the water you can see there. they are manatees, hundreds of them huddling together at the cape canaveral power plant. they've been coming to the plant to keep warm since the '60s. this year is a little different. you remember the plant was torn down to make room for a new one. >> in the meantime, though, the company has installed a nearly $5 million water heating pump just for the manatees. in fact, a giant space heater for the sea cows. >> before you think, oh, how wonderful is this company, we should mention there are specific regulations for endangered species that require these plants to provide heaters for the manateemanatees. so in essence customers are footing this heating bill. >> of course they are. more wor"world news now" right after this. if your racing thoughts keep you awake...
sleep is here, on the wings of lunesta. and if you wake up often in the middle of the night... rest is here, on the wings of lunesta. lunesta helps you fall asleep and stay asleep, so you can wake up feeling rested. when taking lunesta, don't drive or operate machinery until you feel fully awake. walking, eating, driving, or engaging in other activities while asleep, without remembering it the next day, have been reported. abnormal behaviors may include aggressiveness, agitation, hallucinations or confusion. in depressed patients, worsening of depression, including risk of suicide, may occur. alcohol may increase these risks. allergic reactions, such as tongue or throat swelling, occur rarely and may be fatal. side effects may include unpleasant taste, headache, dizziness and morning drowsiness. ask your doctor if lunesta is right for you. get lunesta for a $0 co-pay at lunesta.com. sleep well, on the wings of lunesta.
this. it's a michigan man who pretended to be a doctor for years. he even lectured some of the nation's top cardiologists on patient safety. >> the catch here is he actually never graduated from medical school. so how did he fool everyone for so long? here's sharyn alfonsi. >> reporter: he was, by all accounts, impressive. dr. william ham mnd, a commercial pilot and cardiologist who used his expertise in both to keep hearts and planes from crashing. lecturing and teaching at prestigious medical events around the country. >> what we're doing is taking a concept that was developed really in the airline industry, i'm actually a captain for united airlines. >> really? oh, cool. >> reporter: but there was just one problem with dr. hammond's story. the ap learned the impressive dr. hammond wasn't really a doctor. >> when he was wanting this seek this grant they discovered he did not have an md degree. when we checked further it appeared he did not have a ph.d.
degree either. >> reporter:. or the 15 years of clinical experience he claimed. he attended medical school for a few years but withdrew and didn't graduate. doctors who worked alongside him are stunned. never treated a patient, only lectured and taught. but they say he was completely convincing. walking the walk and talking the talk. >> dr. harris. >> yeah? >> do you concur? >> reporter: the high-flying con men in "catch me if you can." hammond really is a pilot, a captain at united with top credentials. lot airline has reportedly grounded him after learning of his deceptions. >> i could find no one that wasn't absolutely shocked. absolutely shocked. >> reporter: sharyn alfonsi, abc news, new york. >> wow. so far, he has declined himself to comment on this story but his lawyers said eventually as always it will be all cleared up in time. >> in addition to all those lectures, he was also contributing to some pretty interesting journal articles. and it's just hard to believe
welcome back. as you know we are days away from christmas and that means the clock is ticking on getting your holiday shopping done. today we will tell you the must have holiday gadgets out there that are all under $30. to help me do that is the one and only giz wiz. always a pleasure and i love the outfit today. >> oh, thank you. actually, it's now under $40. because i added something. everything's under $40. i'm going to get up on my soapbox so you can see my
synthesizer t-shirt. i was here once with the guitar shirt, the drum shirt. this is a wearable shirt that you can play. you can change -- >> how cool is that? you tell me this is a synthesizer? >> that's why i'm up on my box. because it has a little retro look amplifier that comes with it. it has a headphone jack. so you don't drive your parents crazy. you can put headphones in there, then play your tunes and only you will hear it. >> how many different sound effects? >> eight different instruments. >> oh, wow. >> and it's under 30 bucks and it's from think geek. >> let's move on. this next one is ear buds. they're great. >> these are great. this is called zip buds. so this plugs into your mp3 player. the ear buds are part of zip buds. the ear buds go into your ear. sound is pretty decent. but you know you have those strings all over and at the gym you keep getting caught? zip buds, you actually unzip as
much cord as you want. and then when you put them in your ears, if you want a little less cord, you just zip them back up. >> i don't know what to do with all that extra time not untangling the wires. >> zip buds is just under $40. >> let's talk about these glasses. i think they're perfect. the menus in a restaurant are impossible to read and these are perfect. >> these are perfect. this is a new version called light spec. we showed something similar two years ago. but the battery and the lights were bolted on the side. with light specs, everything, the lights and the batteries are built in. so i'm just going to replace these with -- and so wherever you look. reading in bed at night you can focus on just your book, you can just light one of them if you don't want the light over on your bedmate. and they are under 30 bucks. >> i just want to see.
are they very heavy? >> no, they're not. >> not at all. these are prescription too? >> no, those are just 3.0 magnification. they come in all different magnifications. >> very, very cool. let's move on to this next one. i think when anyone sees these gloves they're going to think, why didn't i think of that one? it's so obvious. >> instead of giving the techie person just ordinary gloves, you give them aiv-gloves. ag is the symbol for silver and these gloves have little specks of silver in them which will conduct the chemical from your body, the ions, so that when you use a touch screen, it will work with these gloves on. any other gloves, you have to put a barrier between your finger and the touch screen. >> so ipads, iphones, anything you can think of that we touch and we normally have to have our finger for, this takes the place. >> exactly. >> gift open don't go. >> okay. this is open it. so this looks like pruning
shears. this is a way to cut through all those thick packages. then when you get the packages open, kids' toys now you need a screwdriver to get into the battery compartment. the screwdriver is built into one side. then on the other side there's a little protective cap which i'll take off. on the other side is a little knife. so the knife is so you can slit through your dvds, anything wrapped in plastic. >> that's nice, yeah. >> open it is under $13. >> 30 seconds left, time for this. >> finally, little atm. julian's atm. the kit, it comes with its own atm card. then the kid puts in their own code. they can put in an amount of money they want to save to buy certain toys or something. the bank tells them how close they are to their goal. >> dick debartolo, always a pleasure. you can find out more
information on wnnfans.com. dick, are you going to play us to break now? >> i'll be back next month with more stuff. >> we look forward to it. you're watching "world news now." n honking. a short time ago, this woman suffered from around his house. these people chose freedom over restrictions. independence over limitations. they chose mobility. they chosehe scooter store. and this is the team of mobility experts who made it all happen. ii great news, you've been approved for payment. dr. cruz, i'm calling on behalf ofmarie stanford. and they can make it happen for you. hi, i'm doug harrison, if you're living with limited mobility, call the scooter store today. i promise, no other company will work harder to make you mobile or do more to ensure your total satisfaction. i expected they'd help me file some paperwork with
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forget monday night football, the real sport in hollywood is trying to decide which movies are going to be the ones that are hits at awards season. let me tell you something, some of those golden globes nominees left some of us going, hm? >> what do i call you? >> your royal highness. >> reporter: best picture, best actor, and best director. just three of seven golden globe nominations for the movie "the king's speech." the critically acclaimed drama deals with the british king's difficulty with public speaking. its fellow nominees have earned just as much praise. "the black swan," a psychological thriller featuring best actress nominee natalie portman as a tortured ballerina. the mind-bending blockbuster "inception." the boxing drama "the fighter." and facebook feature "the social network." >> best motion picture comedy or musical. >> reporter: when it comes to comedies, however, there were a few surprises. >> i'm elise. >> i'm fran. >> that's a terrible name. >> reporter: critics widely
panned "the tourist." it still finagled a best picture nod. experts say it will be tough to beat indy favorite "the kids are all right." other movies in the comedy and musical category include "alice in wonderland," "burlesque," and "red." oscar hosts james franco and anne hathaway are getting golden globe nods of their own. "127 hours." hathaway, best actress in the romantic comedy "love and other drugs." and everybody's favorite rock and roll pirate johnny depp himself is facing some tough competition from himself. he was nominated twice for best actor in a comedy or musical for his work in "alice in wonderland" and "the tourist." >> good position for johnny depp to be in. >> no kidding. >> there's also golden globes for just tv. my favorite show "modern family" is up for best comedy. also in this category is
"dplee," "the big seed," "first jackie," "the big bang theory." >> "glee" is leading all nominations. they're having a good year, good for them. >> for information on services for older adults, the eldercare locator can help! >> it's great having a friendly person deliver a healthy meal- and having meals delivered makes it possible for me to stay in my own home. >> the eldercare locator can put you in touch with local resources to help older persons find home and community based services. call 1.800.677.1116 or visit eldercare.gov today! the eldercare locator is a free public service of the u.s. administration on aging.
deadly drama involving a gunman at a school board meeting. >> please don't, please don't. >> the hero who helped end the ordeal. arctic agony. the icy highway headaches and the costly crop damage. and vulnerable victim. a toddler's severe internal injury and how doctors dare to help him. it's wednesday, december 15th. >> from abc news, this is "world news now." >> certainly the story everyone is talking about this morning, what took place in florida,
essentially someone walking into a meeting with a handgun and opening fire. luckily, none of the people he was shooting at were injured. >> could have been a lot worse and the video is kind of disturbing. so we warn you of that. good morning, everybody, i'm rob nelson. >> i'm vinita nair. as we were talking about, it all happened during a routine school board meeting. a gunman with a grudge opened fire. >> despite an exchange of bullets only the shooter died in the terrifying incident. bill weir describes the unfolding drama and some of the video is disturbing. >> reporter: business as usual stopped when 56-year-old clay duke stepped to the front of the room and began spray painting the wall with an ominous red symbol seen in the movie "v for vendetta." >> the faces on the board members kind of hinted something odd was happening. then i saw the gun. >> reporter: a reporter for local station wmdb hit the floor as duke ordered the women and children from the room. moments later, board member ginger littleton sneaks behind duke and tries to knock the gun from his hand with her purse.
>> if he wanted to kill her, at that moment he could have, and he didn't. >> reporter: duke lets her go. and tension builds as he rants at the male board members over a sales tax increase, while superintendent bill husfelt tries to calm him. >> stick with me for a minute -- >> i don't want anybody to get hurt and i've got a feeling that what you want to talk to me and kill you because -- >> but why? this isn't worth it. this is -- please don't. please don't. please. >> reporter: duke fires wildly. four shots. all of them miss. he then crumples to the floor, shot from the back of the room by chief of security mike jones, a former detective. as he lay wounded police say duke used the remaining bullet to take his own life. >> police were alerted immediately, they were there within minutes. we had both the dade county sheriff's office and panama city
police department there working the scene. >> reporter: here's another look at the moment of horror. another reminder of just how miraculous it is no one else was hurt. >> but why? this is -- this isn't worth it. this isn't -- please don't. please don't. please -- >> reporter: bill weir, abc news, new york. the bellagio resort in las vegas is down about $1.5 million in casino chips after a hollywood-style heist. there goes the armed bandit early tuesday morning on his way to a getaway motorcycle. he was only inside three minutes. police say he was apparently interested in taking as much loot as he could easily grab. >> he didn't confront any of the customers with the exception of moving them back away from the craps table. he simply took the casino chips that were -- i don't know what you call the area, the box they keep on the craps table. >> police also say the same guy who held up the bellagio also
got away with $20,000 cash last week from another casino. the bellagio is keeping an eye out for anyone trying to cash high-denomination chips. >> a real-life "ocean's 11." more than two dozen states are locked in a deep freeze that continues to menace the eastern portion of the country as the southeast braces for another morning of record lows, that arctic blast is also taking a toll across the border. more now from matt gutman. >> reporter: a freak blizzard just 60 miles from detroit engulfed an ontario highway, burying cars and stranding more than 300 motorists. after nearly 30 hours the canadian military airlifted families and the elderly to warming centers. and those arctic tentacles have lunged southward, freezing fountains in atlanta, dumping snow in north carolina, and turning florida groves into ice sculptures. what crops got hit hardest? >> any of your leafy type crops. tomatoes, bell peppers, cauliflower, collard greens, any
of the leafy type -- celeries. >> reporter: and it's not over. >> we're predicted to have about the same scenario as we did last night. >> reporter: farmers sprayed water hoping to cocoon crops at 32 degrees. anything colder could kill. recently farms have dispatched helicopters which fly low to fan warmer air towards the crops but stiff wind kept them grounded. it's an expensive last-ditch measure, and dangerous. three choppers have already crashed this season, battling cold in palm beach. meanwhile, atlanta suffered through its coldest night in nearly 100 years. >> this is cold. >> reporter: roads turned to ice rinks in tennessee where the state warned people to stay indoors. watoga county, north carolina, saw snow for the sixth day in just a little over a week. >> it's never like this. i haven't seen it like this since i was born here. >> reporter: for these french tourists in orlando, here to visit the theme parks, sheer pain. >> you seem like you're very cold. >> yes.
>> reporter: they brought bathing suits, not parkas. >> we have a pool. too much cold. >> reporter: here at the palm beach zoo they put up plastic sheets and heat lamps behind me, trying to keep these scarlet macaws warm and from freezing. in fact, it's been so cold here, the curator of the zoo told me lizards and birds have been simply dropping off the trees. >> dropping off trees. i've never heard of that. here is a look at your wednesday weather. even more snow from the dakotas to the twin cities. freezing rain in parts of arkansas, tennessee, and kentucky. showers along the gulf coast and nearly 1 foot of snow in northern new england, the northern rockies and the sierra range. showers in the pacific northwest. >> meanwhile, 40s in seattle and portland. 55 out in sacramento. teens in fargo and the twin cities. 20s from omaha into detroit. just 36 in atlanta. 66 in new orleans. president obama's tax cut plan is expected to easily pass in the senate today. the house could vote on the bill by the end of the week.
>> but some unhappy democratic lawmakers are now threatening to make changes to that plan first. john hendren has the very latest now. good morning, john. >> reporter: good morning, vinita and rob. president obama is busily pushing his agenda through congress before the christmas break. and priority number one is tax breaks. senator after senator heaped criticism on the president's tax cut compromise. >> i am opposed to those provisions that give, i think, overly generous tax reductions to the wealthiest among us. >> do i feel passionate that the people who earn over $1 million don't need a tax cut? you bet i do. >> most conservatives are upset about the unfunded extension of unemployment benefits. >> this is ridiculous. this is ridiculous. >> reporter: and those are the bill's supporters. hours earlier at a key test vote they let it move forward by an overwhelming majority, 83-15. they're expected to pass it in the next 24 hours.
>> the time has come that we have to start voting and doing important things that are so important to complete. >> reporter: the bill's supporters agree on two things. >> no one thinks this is a perfect bill. >> reporter: that, and that it's worth passing anyway. >> the bottom line is, this senate will overwhelmingly pass this package. >> reporter: the real test will be in the house, where few democrats support the plan. but the white house expects enough conservative democrats to join republicans and push it through. >> the president's had some good conversations, and i think we got a path toward getting this agreement through the house and ultimately to the president's desk. >> reporter: the signature he hopes to give by the end of the week. a christmas present worth $858 billion. the white house says president obama will likely put off the start of his christmas vacation in hawaii to push key bills through congress. if it hasn't passed by then, that will likely include the tax bill. vinita and rob? up at lake superior college in duluth, minnesota, it didn't matter that it was arctic
outside. not when inside it was time for the annual robot competition. >> engineering students are given a challenge every year. this year they had to design a robot that could move two cups of water about 20 feet. >> the team and the robot that got it done first was of course the winner. some of the robots, as you see, did a little bit better than others. and also some high schools, nearby high schools that competed in this. can you imagine being in high school and being able to design something like that? >> i barely got out of algebra. i'd break that down at the holiday party. that's all i got. >> you rock. we'll be right back with more "world news now." ♪
next week's holiday will be especially cheerful for two parents and their 2-year-old son. it was just two months ago that the young boy was, get this, never even heard this phrase before, internally decapitated. >> it's a fascinating medical tale that includes quick thinking and a lot of luck. here is dr. richard besser. >> reporter: micah andrews is your typical 2-year-old little boy. he loves to play, is outgoing and happy. >> a bubbly personality. likes to make you laugh. >> reporter: but four months ago this toddler was in a traumatic car accident that left him in a coma with brain damage and another condition that shocked even his doctors. micah was internally decapitated. >> this would be the worst injury that we could imagine. he had it.
>> reporter: the impact of the car accident completely tore the ligaments that connect micah's skull to his spine, leaving the neck supported only by muscle and skin. it's dangerous because it leaves the spinal cord completely unprotected. so that the slightest movement can be fatal. >> this space shouldn't be here. >> reporter: micah needs emergency surgery to reattach his skull to his spine. his parents are terrified. but they received words of comfort from micah's surgeon. at the barrow neurological institute. >> he turned to us and he said, i'm going to operate on him as if i were operating on my own child. and we were -- you know. we believed him. >> this was a very intricate and delicate surgery. because with each breath that micah took during surgery, we could see his skull and spine moving as two separate entities. >> reporter: to perform the four-hour-long reattachment procedure, micah's doctors used wires, a small titanium rod, and a piece of bone from his rib to reattach his skull to the spine. every aspect of this surgery is high-risk.
one little mistake and micah could lose his life. the surgery is successful. but now micah's parents wait by his side, praying he will come out of the coma and remember who they are. >> i just, you know -- praying and praying and praying. this kid's going to come back. >> reporter: then, four days later, micah wakes up. >> and i bend down in his ear and said one of our jokes about his diaper. "diaper." he smiled the biggest smile. >> reporter: that smile sparks a hospital-wide celebration. >> there were doctors and nurses crying and cheering. it was just -- unexpected, incredible. >> reporter: just two weeks after the horrific accident, micah is strong enough for therapy where he relearns to walk and speak. and after three months -- >> michael? are you ready to take this off? >> are you ready to get rid of it? >> all done. >> all done, all right! >> yay!
>> miracles happen every day. and when i first saw micah i certainly never would have imagined at this point that he'd be looking as good as he does. i think he'll continue to surprise us. >> if you don't believe in miracles, that story will make you for sure. he was up and running again almost two months after surgery. he was released from the hospital. that's incredible that he bounced back that quick after such an injury. of something you probably haven't even heard of. >> they're saying he has a couple of issues with his balance and there's aspects of speech that are still troubling him. aside from that they say with therapy and work he should be a regular little boy. >> amazing what medicine can do. >> yeah. >> good christmas for that family. coming up, who may be responsible for shooting embarrassing video, you've all seen it by now, of miley cyrus. heartbreak just before the holidays for a sexy celebrity couple next in "the skinny."
it's been a really rough week for hollywood couples. >> no kidding, brutal. >> yeah. we talked about zac efron and vanessa, we talked about elizabeth hurley and her husband. and now arguably the most attractive couple out there right now, donesville. take a look at who's calling it quits. >> oh, no! >> willis is upset. ryan reynolds and scarlett johansson. these two just wed in 2008. they apparently separated two weeks ago, according to their rep, now they're saying we're going our separate ways. she's 26, he's 34, and they say they've been having troubles due to their work schedules. according to johansson, and this is according to a source so it's not really her rep, she's been unhappy for a while and the biggest issue in the relationship is distance. it's interesting timing because like i said, they are considered the most attractive couple right now. and by that i mean "people" magazine named him the sexiest man alive. there he is on the cover. and "gq" named her the babe of the year. apparently just being freakishly attractive is not enough to keep a marriage together because it
didn't work out for them. >> are you going to own up to your ryan reynolds crush? >> i'm going to own up to every woman's ryan reynolds crush. we love him. >> neither of those two will be on the market long, we know that. you all heard about this miley cyrus controversy. she's doing her whole little caught on tape drug performance here. what they're calling now the bong-troversy. which i thought was a fun name for that. apparently the girl who taped all of this is one of her best friends, anna oliver. now that the video has gone public, there's anna there on the left, apparently folks just going nuts over this girl on twitter blasting her for putting miley out there, doing this drug. it wasn't marijuana but it was -- i forget what the name of the drug was. some other kind of thing -- >> it was a hallucinogen. >> exactly. some of these messages on twitter directed toward the friend were, what would you do if you met anna oliver? probably kick her in the teeth. anna oliver, i hate you. we should find anna oliver and feed her to the lions. dear anna oliver, i know you want to be a little fame whore
but you're not good at it, we hate your guts, love, everyone. she's since deactivated her twitter account, things got so nasty for posting that video. >> you can only imagine. she not only posted it, tmz got their hands on it. so you have to imagine there were probably some sales going on and she might have profited. i don't know that but you can imagine. >> whether miley knew she was being taped in this, part of her image revap vamp that she's growing up, if that's what you want to call it. >> usher was performing here in madison square garden. this video, it says it all. take a look at what happened in the middle of the concert. a very excited fan. she was pulled up onstage and -- >> whoa! >> one more time. >> oh! >> yeah. again, this is from tmz, the folks over there giving us a lot of good video today. usher was very cool about the whole thing. he said, we play rough in the bed, we kick each other in the face, all that good stuff. he said he wasn't too injured, even though that woman, that was a stiletto he took to the head. >> oh, really? >> it wasn't a boot stiletto but nonetheless a stiletto. >> one of the things where the
performers say, be sexy, the bedroom sing, bam to the nose. all right. apparently nicholas cage had a little anger issue in romania, taping a new movie, there caught on tape going ballistic. yelling at this older man and older woman, just yelling. i'll f'ing die right now. sleep is here, on the wings of lunesta. and if you wake up often in the middle of the night... ., i'll f'ing die right now. , i'll f'ing die right now. lunesta helps you fall asleep and stay asleep, so you can wake up feeling rested. when taking lunesta, don't drive or operate machinery until you feel fully awake. walking, eating, driving, or engaging in other activities while asleep, without remembering it the next day, have been reported. abnormal behaviors may include aggressiveness, agitation, hallucinations or confusion. in depressed patients, worsening of depression, including risk of suicide, may occur. alcohol may increase these risks. allergic reactions, such as tongue or throat swelling,
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you'll get this free information kit... as with all medicare supplement plans, you can keep your own doctor and hospital that accepts # medicare, call this toll-free number now. here are s here are some stories to watch today on abc news. president obama returns to the private sector today to seek solutions on strengthening the economy. he is inviting top executives to talk about investments, education and job creation. members of the house vote today to repeal the don't ask, don't tell policy on gays and lesbians serving openly in the military. a new abc news poll shows 77% of americans support the repeal. and the centers for disease control releases new data on foodborne illnesses today. up to 500,000 americans get sick on tainted food each and every year. >> enjoy that midnight snack.
finally this morning, time to figure out of course for many of us the annual christmas budget. no, we're not talking about just the items you have on your wish list this year. >> we wondered what the entire holiday adds up from cookies to wrapping paper. i love doing this segment every year. our john berman made a list and he checked it twice. here it is, christmas by the numbers. >> reporter: christmas is the season of giving. if your true love gave you all the gifts in the song "the 12 days of christmas" you'll have 36 ladies dancing, 12 partridges in pear trees, plus 316 other presents waiting in your stocking. and your true love will have spent nearly $100,000. dashing through the snow, and to the stores. 20% of americans won't finish their shopping until christmas eve. 38,000 miles of ribbon are used to wrap up all those christmas presents. enough to tie five giant bows around the moon. last holiday season, nearly 40 million christmas trees were sold.
30% of them were fake. if you prefer pine to plastic, start chopping. there are 1 million square acres of christmas trees growing in america's forests. more acreage than the entire state of rhode island. anthem, arizona, is home to the nation's largest christmas tree. standing at 110 feet. the white fir is at least 18 santas tall. it is decorated with more than 50,000 lights. 11,000 letters addressed to the big man in red arrive at the post office in the town of santa claus, indiana. and in order to visit all those good little boys and girls on christmas eve, santa and his eight reindeer need to travel 650 miles per second. on dasher and on dancer indeed. >> and of course we spare no expense here at "world news now." vinita, lovely hat. we're having a very adult christmas. >> i wanted to bring a little bit of style to it. there are two on the list of the
top 12 that are cheaper this year. believe it or not. if you want three french hens, they used to be $45, now they're $30. if you want six geese a-laying, down from $360 to $240. those are your bargain buys this year. >> for information on services for oldeadults, the eldercare locator can help! >> i havlived in my house for 40 years and want to stay in my community. having someone help me with transportation makes that possible. >> the eldercare locator can put you in touch with loc resources to help older persons find home and mmunity based services. call 1.800.677.1116 or visit eldercare.gov today! the eldercare locator is a free public service of the u.s. administration on aging.