tv wusa 9 News at 6pm CBS March 10, 2014 6:00pm-6:31pm EDT
as we approached the september primary, they needed more money for getting out the vote. they go to jeff thompson, vernon hawkins said we need more than $400,000. jeff thompson says if i'm going to cough up that much money, i have to have mayor gray come to me and ask for that money himself. he says vincent gray in a meeting in june of 2010 did ask him for that money. he presented a budget for get out the vote. jeff thompson says through prosecutors in court today, he responded by writing checks for half a million dollars to the vincent gray campaign. here's more. >> mayor gray continues to insist that he did nothing wrong in the 2010 campaign and jeff thompson is lying when he says the mayor asked him to pay for a get out the vote effort. >> you go back and look at that campaign, bruce, and i wasn't even that involved anymore than i absolutely had to. i was trying to do my job as the chairman of the council.
>> but you have known vernon hawkins for years. where would they feel they have the authority to do this? >> i don't know. i'm sure there were people that did all kinds of things. >> for his cooperation, jeff thompson could be looking at only six months in jail. prosecutors now bring a case against the mayor? are today's developments a game changer in the race for d.c. mayor? >> you know out there, people say this is a game changer. >> it could be a game changer. the timing of this is interesting. i'm not any different person than i was 3 1/2, 4 years ago. i'm the same person. you look at my career -- >> the mayor may not like the timing of all this, but there is a big block of voters out there undecided and others who had already sided with vincent gray. he had an 8 point lead in the last pole and they are going to be taking a second look at this
campaign. most people agree with this. been getting a lot of phone calls from political insiders and asking, what does this mean? back to you guys. >> that is the big question tonight, bruce, and the democratic mayoral primary is three weeks away. three recent polls suggested mayor gray had twice the support of any of his rivals for the nomination. so again, the question. how much will this hurt? bruce leshan is here with more on that. >> yeah, lesli, certainly can't help, but jeffrey thompson allegedly spread a whole lot of money around to a whole lot of candidates and most of them are maintaining terribly low profiles in the wake of thompson's allegations against mayor gray. the poles suggest that bowser is the leading challenger and after initially agreeing to talk to us, staff told me they were reevaluating and we have yet to hear back from her. jack evans said he wanted to listen to the fbi u.s. attorney news conference before he talked and the usually gailous
vincent orange was nowhere to be found. the one candidate eager to talk was the one who refused corporate contributions, tommy wells. >> jeffrey thompson, the largest contractor in the city, he didn't guff money because he liked folks. he gave money to protect his contracts. >> $668,000 for a shadow campaign -- in 2010, but money is not everything. jeffrey thompson pumped nearly or about $166,000 into a campaign to unseat ward 1 councilman, gum graham. and graham, he won. derek, lesli, back to you. >> it's telling that good number of these mayoral candidates don't have anything to say just yet. we'll see what happens if this evening progresses. >> money talks, as they say. you move on to our weather forecast because we can't wait for spring and topper is tracking a system that is
looking spring-like. >> it could bring thunderstorms, strong winds, plummeting temperatures, all the things you like to go bike riding in. >> it's going to be a tough day wednesday. it's going be the tale of two days. by the time you get home, it's going to be like winter again. here's the storm. it's going to take shape across kentucky as we get into tuesday night. snow from detroit to chicago. all rain for us. and really sort of a disorganized ban of showers for us and as we go through the afternoon, i think your commute home on wednesday will be wet with showers and thunderstorms and then cold air just plummeting all the way down to the carolinas behind the system and that will leave us with colder temperatures and also some possibly damaging, if not some strong winds wednesday night and also into thursday morning. so, we have to -- we may see wind gusts over 50 miles an hour wednesday night. so, looking ahead, we'll talk about the time frame now. noon wednesday until about midnight on thursday. stronger damaging winds wednesday night.
mainly wet for the evening commute home and then winter temperatures behind the storm on thursday. we'll come back and tell you how long that winter -- those temperatures hang around this time of year. >> just an emotional day in annapolis where a bitter battle over accountability for the nazi holocaust bidding to build the purple line. >> scott broom is at the maryland state house to explain how a holocaust survivor's death saturday cast a tragic shadow over today's event. >> at age 93. leo fell just two days short of living long enough to see through his quest for accountability. leo, age 93, died saturday. >> to really hold this company accountable. >> he was expected to be the star of this hearing in annapolis today. his friends overcame an immediate instinct to cancel and carried on anyway. >> we have memories that will haunt us and haunt us to our dying day. >> the hearing was on a bill
that brett inspired, to hold the french rail company accountable for wartime atrocities before that same company can do the business it now wants to do in maryland. building the purple line. >> brett seen here in a washington post video that was played for legislatures described how 71 years ago packed him and 76,000 others into cattle cars to be shipped from france to nazi death camps. brett was one of the few survivors. >> leo brett was my friend. >> roesette was a friend and fellow survivor herself. >> we want them to say, we are sorry for what we did. >> we deeply regret what happened then. >> president of the american arm, it's up to the french government, not his now modern company to make history right. >> we were placed under the
german laws of war and anybody who would disobey would be murdered. >> i understand that the people that did this are no longer with us. but you still have to accept responsibility. >> brett was one of ten of the french cattle car survivors who eventually ended up living here in maryland and now, of course, there are only 9. people who are not just demanding apologies, but reparations for what happened back in world war ii. in annapolis, scott broom, wusa9. >> meeting tonight in alexandria is the civic association that represents the neighborhood where three unsolved murders have talken place. the north ridge citizen's association will meet at 7:30 at the sanctuary of beverly hills united methodist church and that's on old dominion boulevard. the group will accept donations. all this as police continue to investigate last month's murder of lodato as well as the murder
of ron kirby last year and nancy dunning back in 2003. and wusa9 is committed to staying on top of developments in the alexandria murders. we set up a special text alert for killings, updates on the killings, text alexandria to 25543 for texts with updates and new developments. so, you are in colorado and you don't have a place to smoke your legally purchased pot. well, there is a new club opening up just for you. >> and did you know today is national napping day? it is celebrated annually. >> every day for you. >> it celebrated every day after the return of daylight savings time. hey, national napping day provides everybody with the chance to have a nap. you know you have to catch up on that hour of sleep, and naps are good. great leaders now.
the highest place in america is about to go higher. >> that is because that 8200 feet above sea level, the country's first ever sanctioned cannabis club is all set to open, where else? colorado. nelson garcia shows us how the organizers got the club off the ground. >> at 8200 feet in the mountains above boulder. >> we wanted to fill in
something that was missing. >> you'll find a building that may soon be. the highest place in america. after a 14 month legal journey. >> it's been rough. i mean, they were writing the laws as we were developing this. >> cheryl and david will soon open club med. >> these are the blueprints we had drawn up by local architect. >> the only legal sanctioned cannabis club in the country. >> went to the town, we went to the marshall. we went to jeff, our attorney. he talked with the d.a. and we basically got everybody's approval. >> this is history. >> having our attorney, had marijuana to the colorado clean air indoor act, that was really key. >> by doing that, they are following rules that rough hint any smoking inside businesses. by following the guidelines of private clubs, like the vfw where people can smoke inside. >> because you don't have too many employees and because your food sales aren't over a
certain amount. >> you aren't allowed to smoke in here. cigarette smoking, that is. >> by designing this club, this is going to be set up. keeping people from smoking in public and keeping them from driving stoned. >> we have a code of conduct that you have to agree to and sign before you come we are sup restaurants, hopefully. hopefully the motels. >> bringing altitude and attitude. >> are we pioneers? maybe more than pioneers. >> to 8200 feet. >> we didn't know how many hoops of fire we would have to jump through, but we knew it would happen. >> i love that line, we are also supporting the restaurant, not to mention the convenience stores. >> and did you see the sign? it said the club with altitude. >> i guess they are probably right. we're coming back and topper has the forecast on the other side
campaign is about you more than me. it's about brianna, who will breathe cleaner air because as attorney general i forced polluters to put in place $4.6 billion dollars in pollution controls. for caren, i fought big banks, winning $1.6 billion in mortgage relief for her and thousands of marylanders. for myra and her kids, they're safer because i brought the beltway snipers to justice, and fought child pornography and internet predators. for eric and mickey, i went to court to fight for marriage equality. for hundreds of baltimore kids, i started an
inner city lacrosse league. and when a judge blamed an 11 year old girl for being sexually abused by saying "it takes two to tango," i took that judge on. i don't put up with things like that, it's not who i am. i take on tough fights and get things done for the people of maryland. a two-year-old arizona boy came to the rescue when his mom was being badly bitten while trying to break up a fight between dogs. the bite nearly took off one of her fingers. her son, bentley, took the phone, used an app called facetime to call a family
friend. that friend called 911 and help showed up. laura calls bentley her little hero. he certainly is. >> that's an example of how smart phone use can save a life, but we have been following some reactions to a story we aired at 5:30 about the study that finds sometimes parents ignore their children when they start looking at their smart phone. >> and there's been a lot of reaction to it on our facebook fan page. the kids are more important than your phone. if you pay more attention to your phone and not to your kids, then you shouldn't be a parent. >> how is the kid supposed to learn about respect, r-e-s-p-e- c-t when the parent behaves this way? >> they can't take away your parental lights for abusing your facebook. >> i think the point people are trying to make is that you shouldn't neglect your kids just to pick up and find out what's going on. you need to engage from them. they are taking cues from you.
>> and 30 years ago, reading a book or reading the newspaper. so distractions have been around for ever. >> we are a distracted society. we knead need to be a little less distracted. >> technology-free zone during meals. >> 61 was the high today. is that acceptable? >> yes. >> and we are going to get warmer tomorrow before the bottom falls out on wednesday night. let's start with a live look outside. it is our live michael and son weather cam. relative humidity still only 29%. a refreshing air mass. i mean, it's warm, but not humid. winds south, southwest at 21 and we're going to die down a little bit tonight. satellite picture, radar combined, we'll take you out to the rockies. this is going to be a big storm as we go through the next 48 hours. doesn't look like much right now, but it will produce some big time snows into wyoming.
it's a big wind on the backside of the storm. we had system roll through. a couple showers in through southern maryland. they are south of town. we're in good shape. most folks around 60. 58 in springfield. it is still 61 in leesburg. 62 in dumfries. dale city, woodbridge. 61. 61 also by college park. so, just chilly tonight, everybody stays above freezing. even warmer tomorrow with some clouds. that's a pretty good tradeoff. a wild wednesday. going to works fine. showers, maybe thunderstorms. strong winds wednesday night and plummeting temperatures. we could see winds wednesday night, gusts to 40. maybe 50 miles per hour. so, we'll take us through the future cast. this is wednesday, not tomorrow. wednesday, there are the showers on our doorstep. again, i think most of the showers arrive in the afternoon. it's going be wet up and down 95. we put this back into motion, they get out of here quickly and the cold air races in and looking at temperatures
plummeting. i mean plummeting wednesday night. tonight, partly cloudy, breezy and chilly. lows 36 to 46. winds southwest 10 to 15. by morning, partly sunny. a chilly start. 30s and 40s, not bad. and by afternoon, partly sunny and warmer, some high clouds come in late. high 65 to 69. that's a pretty nice day and certainly the best day of the week. so, 40s to start if you are downtown. 56 by 11:00 and 61 by 1:00 p.m. so, walking to lunch tomorrow, you might be able to leave your jacket at the office. there's your yellow alert. high winds, showers, 29. wednesday night, only 31 for a high on thursday. and back to winter then. we're going to go back to the anchors because we have a press conference to go to. >> let's get right to it. the u.s. attorney is going to give us the latest on the charges facing jeff thompson. >> who pled guilty today to offenses stemming from illegal campaign spending as well as tax violations. you'll be hearing from the officials in this order.
the first up will be ronald. he'll be followed by valerie. she's the assistant director in charge of the fbi's washington field office. finally, we'll hear from richard webber. he is the chief of the internal revenue service criminal investigation. they will be joined up here by members of the team who worked on this case from their respective agencies. following the remarks by the officials, we will be able to take a few questions. however, because the investigation is continuing, i wanted offer this cautionary note. they will be limited in what they can say. for example, consistent with the department of justice policy. we won't be able to name the individuals at the press conference today who have not been previously charged. so, we're going to have to work around that by using the titles that you found in the statement of offense and the other
documents. such as candidate a, candidate b, and so forth. like wise, they will be limited if what they can say about the involvement of some of those people. so if you ask questions by name, asking by name about certain people, you might get a little bit of a brush back. but i can promise that we'll try to work with you as best that we can. thanks again for your patients with us. thanks for your understanding on that and we should be ready to start in 2 minutes. >> i can arrange to get pds by the end of the night, i don't have them yet. >> sure. glad to. okay. thanks. >> all right, so we're going to go back to that press conference when it starts. we have two minutes before the u.s. attorney, ron, along with the fbi and richard webber from the irs give us more details about the breaking news today involving jeff thompson and mayor gray. allegations that he knew about the secret campaign, was intimately involved.
he pled guilty to two felonies and agreed to cooperate fully in our prosecution of corrupt public officials, candidates, campaign operatives and anyone else who joined him in his crimes. this investigation has been focused on uncovering the sad truth that has been suppressed for far too long. at d.c. campaigns have been compromised by corporate money for years. jeff thompson's guilty plea pulls back the curtain to expose widespread corruption. his plea gives the citizens of d.c. an inside look at the underground, off the book schemes, that have corrupted election after election, year
after year, in the district. since 2006, jeff thompson has hatched back room deals with a series of candidates and political operatives to secretly finance their campaigns. thompson and his coconspirators have attempted to hide the source of the funds is being mr. thompson. to get around the limits that prevent the wealthy from controlling our elections and to keep voters in the dark about who was doing favors for whom. in all, jeff thompson admitted to secret payments of nearly $2 million in connection tw two mayoral and six d.c. candidate races over a five-year period. the chart to my far right illustrates the extent of mr. thompson's secret payments to various candidates for elected office in the district. thompson secret payments began during the 2006d.c. mayoral race. that year, jeff thompson, in
addition to the legally reimbursing family and friends and employees for making political contributions, also spent almost $280,000 entirely off the books to boost his preferred mayoral candidate. in the final days of that campaign, in a last ditch effort to help his candidate win, thompson agreed to pay off a competing mayoral campaign. that of candidate michael brown, to drop out of the race and endorse thompson's candidate. in exchange for dropping out of the race, thompson authorized payments to michael brown up front of $200,000 and also created $150,000 consulting contract that would take place over the next year. that was not jeff thompson's last payment to former council member brown. in 2007, jeff thompson funded secret payments to brown that the candidate used for his campaign and in 2008, thompson funded $100,000 shadow campaign for michael brown, which led to
brown's election on the d.c. council. michael brown was not the only council candidate who jeff thompson supported with the shadow campaign in 2008. thompson is now admitted to funneling another $100,000 in secret payments to benefit the campaign of another 2008 council candidate. that candidate lost, but in 2010, thompson dispatched that same candidate to serve as a driver for a mayoral candidate. in 2010, thompson funded two d.c. council shadow campaigns, a $26,000 campaign in ward 6 and $140,000 in ward 1. and during the council's special election in april, 2011, thompson funded his final shadow campaign for d.c. council candidate. in that race, thompson worked closely with the candidate on the day of a fund raising reporting deadline to make donor calls from thompson's
offices while thompson sat in a nearby office soliciting conduit contributions. thompson did not only support that candidate with contributions, he funneled $150,000 in corporate money through jaeny clark harris to run a shadow campaign for that candidate. through earlier guilty pleas, we learned about the 2010 mayoral shadow campaign. in 2010, d.c. voters went to that one mayoral campaign was financing another. and that under the table deals concealed $650,000 in secret corporate funding nor mayoral candidate's campaign. the time line to my immediate right describes the key events that occurred during the 2010 mayoral shadow campaign to jeff thompson acknowledged today in court. in 2010, jeff thompson believed that supporting mayoral candidate a would improve the
business climate for d.c. charter. one of his companies that had a $300 million a year contract with the city. but thompson feared that publicly supporting that candidate would lead to retribution from the then current mayor. so thompson told mayoral candidate a if he jumped into the race, thompson would support him and raise money for him, but the fund raising would have to be below the radar. after mayoral candidate a joined the race, vernon hawkins, a senior adviser to the candidate told thompson that their candidate would not succeed without a shadow campaign. so thompson started writing checks, initially transferring $15,000 in corporate money through one of jeanie clark harris' account. came back for more fund raising support. thompson agreed to help, but only through donors that could
not be connected to him. to keep his support secret, thompson requested that mayoral candidate a not refer to him by his real name, but a nickname, uncle earl. the candidate agreed to keep thompson's secret. throughout the summer of 2010, thompson continued to fund the shadow campaign. he transferred $87,000 in corporate funds to a company owned by jeanie clark harris who used it to fund the secret effort. he paid for a driver and a luxury suv to drive candidate mayoral a. but in august 2010, vernon hawkins came to jeff thompson with a significant new request. he asked for $400,000 more in off the books cash to fund a shadow get out the vote campaign in the election's final days. >> federal prosecutor outlining the guilty plea and a lot of new information from jeff thompson about the mayoral
campaign of 2010. he called it a campaign compromised by culvert corporate money. >> yeah, it's the sad truth that that's what has been going on with d.c. campaigns for many, many years. you can watch the rest of this news conference on our website. the cbs evening news is next. >> i'll see you at 7:00. >> pelley: tonight, the mystery deepens. tests conclude back on an oil slick and debris in the search for a missing jetliner. seth doane speaks with the family of a missing american. >> until there's proof that phillip is dead, i refuse to believe it. >> pelley: bob orr on the investigation. and we'll talk to sully sullenberger about what might have been gone wrong. for the first time, the father of adam lanza talks about the sandy hook shootings and his son's mental health. >> reporter: does he blame himself in any