tv ABC World News Tonight With David Muir ABC March 17, 2018 5:30pm-6:00pm PDT
>> the drawing is at 8:00 tonight. you still have a little time to get y tonight, we're following several breaking stories. the president's top attorney calling for the russian investigation to now be shut down. this, just hours after the deputy director of the fbi andrew mccabe is fired. also breaking tonight, president trump versus stormy daniels. the president claiming the adult film star breached a confidentiality agreement and could now owe him more than $20 million. plus, the devastating images. flattened vehicles finally being pulled from that bridge collapse in miami. the cracks seen days before the tragedy. and the apparent miscalculation just two hours before it all came down. high-speed help. the stolen car going 80 miles per hour through a small town. the police trying to catch up. tonight, the driver who stepped in to help, forcing the alleged crooks to ditch the car and run.
and good evening. thanks for joining us on this saturday. i'm tom llamas. and we begin tonight with major developments out of the white house. the president's top attorney today calling for special counsel robert mueller's investigation to be shut down. this, just hours after deputy director andrew mccabe was fired, just two days from retiring. the president taking to twitter where he has taunted mccabe in recent months. mr. trump's allies say that mccabe tried to undermine the president and details now emerging that similar to his old boss, james comey, mccabe kept detailed memos all of his interactions with the president. a source telling abc news that those documents are now in the hands of the special counsel. abc's tara palmeri at the white house tonight, starting us off. >> reporter: tonight, an aggressive switch in strategy from president trump's legal team. lead attorney john dowd calling for an end to the russia investigation, pressing deputy
attorney general rod rosenstein to tell special counsel robert mueller, case closed. dowd's motivation -- he says rosenstein should follow the, quote, brilliant and courageous example of attorney general jeff sessions, who hours earlier fired deputy fbi director andrew mccabe. he's one of the first top level officials at the fbi that started to look into the allegations that the trump campaign coordinated with the russians during the election. >> there's been no collusion between us and the russians. there was absolutely no collusion. there's absolutely no collusion. >> reporter: overnight, and into this afternoon, trump blasting mccabe on twitter calling his firing a great day for the fbi. even questioning the integrity of his own justice department tweeting, there was tremendous leaking, lying and corruption at the highest levels of the fbi, justice & state. mccabe's exit is over an inspector general's report finding that he allowed fbi officials to speak with a reporter about the clinton foundation probe, and then misled investigators who asked him about it. mccabe denies any wrongdoing. >> we do think that it is well
documented that he's had some very troubling behavior and by most accounts, a bad actor, and should have some cause for concern. >> reporter: president trump has repeatedly questioned mccabe's politics. >> did you ask mccabe who he voted for? did you ask him that? >> i don't think so. no, i don't think i did. >> you did not? >> i don't know what's the big deal with that. >> reporter: mccabe is firing back. speaking to abc news, he calls the attacks part of a, quote, ongoing assault on his credibility in the russia probe. mccabe, a staunch ally of former fbi director james comey, who the president fired. >> i can tell you that i hold director comey in the absolute highest regard. i have the highest respect for his considerable abilities and his integrity. >> reporter: and today this major development, abc news has learned that mccabe, just like comey, kept detailed memos about his conversations with the president, and now has handed them over to mueller. >> mueller now has those memos as well.
tara joins us from the white house. the president also taking aim at former fbi director james comey, accusing him of covering up corruption, lies and leaks. tonight, comey is responding. >> that's right, tom. comey was quick to respond. he tweeted that his new book gives a full account of what happened. so that people can decide for themselves quote, who was honorable and who was not. tom. >> tara, thank you. now to the other breaking political headline. the legal battle between the president and stormy daniels. an attorney representing the president in this matter, claiming in court documents that the adult film star, who said she had a sexual relationship with the president, may owe him more than $20 million for breaking their confidentiality agreement. daniels' attorney is firing back, saying they won't be intimidated. here's abc's kenneth moton with the latest. >> reporter: tonight, the president versus the porn star. donald trump and his personal legal team firing back at stormy daniels, seeking more than $20 million in damages. daniels is fighting to speak out about her alleged 2006 affair with trump. >> do you have a nondisclosure
agreement? >> do i? >> reporter: daniels, who was paid $130,000 by longtime trump attorney michael cohen just before the 2016 election, is accused of breaching the confidential settlement at least 20 times. trump, publicly hands off the court battle, until now. he and cohen filed paperwork to move the case from state to federal court. >> this could end up in a very big, very nasty, contentious court battle where donald trump would be forced to give testimony under oath, in a deposition. >> reporter: the president retained high-profile beverly hills attorney charles harder who represented hulk hogan in his legal battle against gawker. harder saying, mr. trump intends to pursue his rights to the fullest extent permitted by law. daniels' attorney michael avenatti calling the move a bullying tactic. saying, how can president donald trump seek $20 million in damages against my client based on an agreement that he and mr. cohen claimed that trump never was a party to and knew nothing about?
avenatti says daniels has been physically threatened to stay quiet about her alleged sexual relationship with trump. >> when the american people are permitted to hear from my client, and hopefully they will hear from my client shortly, they will learn the details relating to these threats. >> all right, kenneth joins us now from the white house. kenneth, attorneys for daniels offering no evidence so far or further details about those alleged threats? >> that's right, tom, no evidence, no details, but stormy daniels' attorney says when she's allowed to talk, and he hopes that happens soon, the american people will be able to judge on whether she's telling the truth about those alleged truths. tom. >> kenneth, thank you. this programming note, more on the breaking political headlines tomorrow when george stephanopoulos goes one-on-one with senator james lankford and congressman adam schiff tomorrow on "this week." now to that disastrous bridge collapse in florida. reports that two hours before the structure in florida came down, engineers were meeting
with school officials to discuss whether cracks posed a safety risk. here's abc's victor oquendo. >> reporter: tonight, the painstaking process. crews sawing through twisted metal, using heavy machinery, pulling out cars flattened, smushed under 950 tons of that collapsed bridge that killed six in miami. the wait for answers excruciating for families of the victims. jorge fraga, desperate for word on his uncle rolando, not knowing if he was killed, and still stuck under the rubble. what has this been like for you and your family not knowing? >> terrible, terrible. because we don't know anything and i called -- every now and then i call the center and they just told me they are waiting and we don't know anything. >> reporter: later, learning his uncle's body was inside this jeep cherokee. this, as florida international university now reveals that about two hours before the bridge crash thursday, their design team was meeting with the florida department of transportation and the contractors about reported cracks on the north end of the
bridge, concluding there were no safety concerns and the cracks did not compromise the structural integrity of the bridge. that meeting happening two days after this. >> calling to share with you some information about the fiu pedestrian bridge. >> reporter: that's a lead engineer from one of the companies responsible for the pedestrian bridge, speaking about those cracks and the safety risks. >> we're not concerned about it from that perspective although the cracking is not good. >> reporter: ntsb investigators say crews were tightening cables on the north side of the bridge when it collapsed. >> several angles still being investigated at this time. victor oquendo joins us now. you're learning how difficult it will be for authorities to identify some of those other victims? >> reporter: tom, from here, they're taken to the medical examiner's office and that's where they begin the process of identifying the body. police saying that will be not easy. in some cases, they may have to
use fingerprints or dna. tom. >> victor, thank you. turning now to the new round of rough weather sweeping across the country. that storm dumping plenty of snow in the sierras, more than 3 feet there. that system now on the move. it could deliver a blast of snow on the east, on the first day of spring. sam champion joining us now, this is also a serious rainmaker this new storm. >> yeah, we got some areas of strong to severe weather. i like the line what you just said, the coast to coast the last punch of winter. let's show everybody what we know right now and what's going to happen with this storm at the end. by sunday, this is the same storm that dropped that snow over the sierras and also it pops out into the plains. the severe storms in dallas, from dallas all the way into atlanta over the weekend. lot of rain and some of those storms will be strong to severe. the potential for a tornado there as well. here's the two models, the american model, the low, look at the snow line here from new york
to philly, to washington d.c. throw up the european model and you'll see new york is out of the snow, but philly and d.c. are in it. the most important thing, we can't eliminate washington, philly and new york out of this snow line when we get into wednesday. we'll give you totals tomorrow night and we'll be able to narrow exactly what cities are in. >> all right, sam, thank you. now overseas to that nerve agent attack on british soil. russia expelling 23 british diplomats after the uk ordered the same. surveillance images released of the car that the former russian spy and his daughter were in before they poisoned. sources tell abc news that he was acting incoherently in a restaurant just before collapsing, a symptom of the nerve agent poisoning. terry moran. >> reporter: summoned to the kremlin today, the british ambassador to russia informed of moscow's response to the uk. 23 british diplomat expelled, given a week to leave. in london, prime minister theresa may standing firm.
>> we will never tolerate a threat to the life of british citizens and others on british soil from the russia government. >> reporter: and the investigation continues. police trying to establish when and how russian spy sergei skripal and his daughter were poisoned. police releasing this security camera video of his maroon bmw hours before the attack. sources telling abc news that skripal was shouting and acting incoherently at a restaurant just before he and his daughter collapsed. those are symptoms consistent with nerve agent poisoning. all this, on the eve of a presidential election in russia. and russians we talked to in red square, they don't believe their government had anything to do with the chemical weapon attack in england. do you think russia poisoned the spy skripal? >> no. >> no. >> who are you voting for? >> putin. >> putin. putin. >> putin. >> putin.
>> putin. >> russians are hearing a very different story. the foreign ministry today saying russia had nothing to do with the attack, and pointing the finger at other countries, the u.s., the uk, the czech republic, slovakia and sweden. tom. >> terry, thank you. next to the latest in the search for 16-year-old amy yu. police say she was dropped off at her bus stop 12 days ago but never made it to class. ending up on a flight to cancun with a 45-year-old married man. what we're learning tonight about that investigation. abc's erielle reshef. >> reporter: new details emerging tonight about the disappearance of 16-year-old amy yu and 45-year-old kevin esterly as officials in mexico issue an amber alert. the two vanishing on march 5th, police say the married father of four and the teen, flew on one-way tickets from philadelphia to cancun. >> all information received thus far leads investigators to believe that amy yu left allentown willingly with esterly.
>> reporter: tonight, his wife stacey's speaking through her attorney. telling abc news that she was concerned about the relationship. >> stacey told amy's mom that this relationship was unhealthy. it was more than a pseudofather/daughter relationship. >> reporter: yu's mother going to police after discovering that her daughter allegedly changed school records to claim esterly as her stepfather. esterly reportedly signing yu out of class ten times. police advising kevin and stacey to stay away from the teen. her family pleading for her safe return. >> i love you. can you come back? >> tom, if captured, esterly could face a third degree felony charge of interfering with the custody of a child. tom. >> erielle, thank you. now to that dangerous high-speed chase through local streets all captured on police dash cam and body cam. the good samaritan getting involved. and what police say you should never do for everyone's safety, especially your own. here's abc's whit johnson. >> reporter: five teens on a wild, high-speed chase in a stolen car.
the cops right behind them. >> 80 miles per hour. >> reporter: the suspect's vehicle clipping another car, debris going airborne over the quiet streets of butler, wisconsin. >> to get some kids who think they're above the law in jail for doing a car theft is worth it for me. >> reporter: then, something unexpected. 20-year-old andy westenberger, joining the pursuit in the white pickup truck. >> out of nowhere, peekaboo. next thing you know i'm in the front of their car. here's the police and here's all these kids coming out of the clown car running. >> reporter: he jumps a median, right in front of police, to help block the suspects in. westenberger chasing alongside the officers when the teens take off on foot. the five suspects all caught and taken into custody. but tonight, a stern warning from law enforcement. >> try to look at the big picture as to see what could potentially go wrong. call 911 and be that person that's going to be a fantastic
witness for us. >> reporter: tom, the suspects range in age from 14 to 17. four of them had previous warrants for their arrests. tom. >> whit johnson, welcome to "world news." still ahead on "world news tonight" this saturday -- man versus mountain. caught on camera, rescuers forced over and over again through the same rugged terrain to save hikers. not up to the challenge. plus, the new frightening scam targeting parents and students on spring break. it involves kidnapping and the victims say it's terrifying. and the new air bag investigation. the cars under the government's microscope after four deadly crashes. stay with us. who were sure of it. others who felt a connection. many more who never saw it coming. but now they know... they descend from the people of ireland. in fact, more than half of our community
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crooks are targeting kids. >> i heard a young girl and she was screaming, mom, mom, help me. a man got on the phone, is this kelly? we have rebecca. >> reporter: kelly nelson says that call came from a blocked number. the man on the other end, claiming to have kidnapped her 13-year-old daughter. he demanded $500, or else. she kept the scammer on the phone, while her husband called to make sure their daughter was okay. >> i was just in panic mode. >> reporter: it happened to this st. louis mom last year, too. >> i'm going to kill her if you hang up on me. she's dead. >> reporter: she ended up wiring $5,000 to the scammer. her daughter was never in any real danger. these women aren't alone. the fbi is warning folks about what they call virtual kidnapping. >> spring break is an ideal time to run these virtual kidnappings. in reality kids may be difficult to get ahold of. >> reporter: if you get one of these calls, experts say
demand proof that the kidnap person is present, try texting your loved one while you're on the phone with the scammer and most importantly call the police. experts tell us, watch what you post on social media. that's where scammers often find clues about your child's whereabouts. >> got to be so careful. terrifying scam. all right, zachary, thank you. up next, the game everyone is talking about in college basketball. the winners stunning the nation and the number one seed at the ncaa tournament. tonight, they're looking ahead to the next round at the big dance. stay with us. if your moderate to severe ulcerative colitis or crohn's symptoms are holding you back, and your current treatment hasn't worked well enough, it may be time for a change. ask
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down the trail. another man found passed out on that same trail, also needed to be air lifted down. two other hikers suffered minor injuries along the way and were brought down on stretchers. all are said to be fine tonight. to march madness and umbc, don't forget that, pulling out the biggest upset in the history of college basketball. university of maryland, baltimore county, ranked 16, toppling number one-ranked virginia in round one. not even close. the final score, 74-54. the game leaving virtually no bracket unbusted. next up the retrievers, that's right, the retrievers face kansas state tomorrow in charlotte. and when we come back -- meet an incredible high school football player. his greatest victory didn't come on the field but yet his team was with him every step of the way. what this moment means right here. stay with us. way. what this moment means right here. stay with us.
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finally tonight, he's a real-life comeback kid. a high school football player who had to watch from the sidelines but that's where he managed to clinch his greatest victory. abc's adrienne bankert has the story. >> reporter: tonight, jackson lilly values every breath. getting back onto the football field is something the 17-year-old wasn't sure he'd ever do again. >> it's scary. you're shocked and you don't really think it's real. >> reporter: the oklahoma high school junior diagnosed one year ago with stage four lymphoma, enduring chemo, radiation, seven surgeries. his team, and the entire high school, with him every step of the way. the guys even shaving their heads in solidarity. >> definitely when i got diagnosed, the whole football team was there. >> reporter: his team's heartfelt support, bringing jackson hope.
his perseverance, motivating them all. >> jacks, you inspired me when you beat cancer. and you inspire every day. >> reporter: and the one who perhaps gained the most strength? jackson's head coach, in his own fight with lou gherig's disease. >> you and i both know what it's like to be in a tough battle. you get to ring the bell in the weight room and that inspires me. >> reporter: ringing that bell is an hour saved for when athletes achieve their personal best. walking among his teammates one year after his diagnosis, cancer free, all of them cheering him on. to celebrate the sweetest victory -- life. adrienne bankert, abc news, new york. >> so tonight, we salute jackson lilly for his incredible comeback. our thanks to you for watching. i'm tom llamas in new york. "good morning america" and "this week" in the morning. i'll see you right back here tomorrow night. have a great evening. good night. morning. have a great evening. good night.
ton and abc 7 news at 6:00, several days of storms careering out but the rain won't be gone for long. >> it touches everyone. eye. a community touched by tragedy. today helping those by a shooti three women. and a statewide dui watch becomes emotional enforcement for officers in an east bay checkpoint. >> abc 7 news at 6:00 starts now. >> announcer: live where you live this is abc 7 news. after days of soggy weather, tomorrow the sun will come out. but not before a few more hours of potential wet weather. good evening and thanks for joining i'm dion lim. >> i'm eric thomas. today shower brought more than just rain. >> check out the hail falling in danville. large bits of ice pelted the roadway. >> in sand carlos so much hail
fell so quick it covered this dryway. but all of this will soon be behind us. drew tuma has more. >> eric and dion, we're getting reports of hail in pots like hayward and livermore. the storm isn't out of here yet. live doppler 7 showing showers out there. i want to get you in discloser to the east bay where we have one of the stronger cells moving through right now to the south ever pleasanton. it moved through hayward and dropped hail. not out of the question it continues. light rain from palo alto to sunnyvale. light sprinkles from santa clara to willow glen and light showers, light from san francisco over into oakland north to berkeley. the storm impact scale, the next couple of hours will track the scattered showers pl still isolated hail possible. a one on the impact scale. but in the next couple hours as the sun sets the showers diminish and the activity will quiet down about 9:00. tomorrow tracking a different forecast to finish off