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tv   Nightline  ABC  April 9, 2021 12:37am-1:06am PDT

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♪ ♪ this "nightline." tonight, the murder mystery. >> be advised we have got four down inside the house. >> rocking a quiet town in south carolina, the former nfl player. accused of killing five people and injuring another before taking his own life. now the hunt for a motive. plus, border crash, the desperate quest for the american dream. for 25 men, women and children, crammed in to one suv. we learn more now about the 13 people who's lives were cut short in a horrifying crash at the u.s./mexico border. what the deadly incident
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about the pacrossings for a betr life. and the first pitch for one team surviving covid-19. "nightline" will be right back. cheaper aerosols use artificial propellants. that's why febreze works differently. plus, it eliminates odors with a water-based formula and no dyes. for freshness you'll enjoy. [sfx: thunder rumbles] [sfx: rainstorm] ♪ comfort in the extreme. ♪ the lincoln family of luxury suvs.
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♪ ♪ thanks for joining us, tonight a quiet town in south carolina shattered by the sounds of gunfire. claiming the lives of five people and injuring another. with all eyes now turning
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towards a former nfl player. the main suspect in the massacre who then took his own life. the latest on the investigation and the friends now stepping forward to remember loved >> we have a .45 caliber shooting. one of the victims is advising that there's women and kids in the house. we have got forced entry in the residence, possibly victims inside. >> reporter: a suburban southern town, engulfed by a grizzly crime. >> we have four down inside the house. >> reporter: a prominent doctor known ask a pillar in his community, shot dead. >> robert was a physician but with his medical practice of as many years as he it, he looked at it as a ministry. he looked at it as a way he could reach out and reach people. >> reporter: his wife and grandchildren shot and killed and a contractor working on the the former nfl player shot them
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all and then himself, leaving many wondering why. >> we don't feel there's a doctor/patient relationship. >> if you think about who he killed, the doctor, his wife and two relatively young grandchildren. this is a guy who just doesn't care who he kills. >> reporter: as the country grapples with the 133rd mass shooting this year, another occurring today in brian, texas, a reported workplaces shooting that left one dead and others injured, it's a sobering reality and the president is vowing to take action. >> it's an epidemic for god's sake and it has to stop. >> reporter: rock hill, south carolina is, a quiet town of just over 75,000. dr. robert leslie is a well known and well respected physician here. running two emergency medical clinics. >> they took you as you are. they loved you as you came to them. they loved everyone that they
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met. >> reporter: it's a sunny wednesday afternoon. dr. leslie, his wife and two of their grandchildren, ada and noah are all home. hvac technicians are outside working. >> 9-1-1. >> yes, ma'am, i think we have had some trouble at 4456 marshal road. >> what's going on marshal road? >> i think there's been a bad shooting. >> reporter: a concerned neighbor out cutting grass hears shots and sees someone in the distance. >> the guy walked on out of the house. i'm quite sure i seen him from a distance. it looked like a black guy. >> reporter: by 4:45 p.m., sheriff's deputies are called to the leslie's home. >> deputies arrived eight minutes after the two 9-1-1 calls and then we began to put together a team to clear the house of dr. robert leslie. >> reporter: the doctor, his wife and two grandchildren are found dead on the scene. as well as the hvac contractor
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james lewis, his colleague robert shook is critically injured. >> once we cleared the home, we found dr. robert leslie and his wife and two grandchildren in a room in the back of the house all deceased with gunshot wounds. >> did he find them in that room or did he make his way in the house, and force them all in to a room at gunpoint. perhaps, we will see. >> reporter: neighbors nearby are vacuated as the search for the suspect begins. >> once the investigation began, we were able to develop philip adams as a suspect. >> reporter: 32-year-old former nfl flare philip adams who's parents live minutes away from the leslies becomes the center of the investigation. he holes up in his family's home and a tense standoff ensues where they try to negotiate his surrender. >> so, for a period of it sounds like hours, they try to communicate with somebody that
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didn't respond. so, at some point, they decide to send a robot in to the house to do an analysis and look for people. >> reporter: just before 3:00 a.m., after clearing the home, police discover adams dead. after an apparent self inflicted gunshot wound. neighbors and loved ones stunned and left searching for answers. adam's father speaking this morning. >> i can say that he is a good kid. he was a good kid. and he, you i had think the football messed him up. all i can tell you, we pray forr the family and i -- used to be my doctor, doctor a long time ago. >> reporter: the motive remains urn clear. >> there's nothing about this right now that makes sense to any of us. >> reporter: as the sheriff looks for the motivations more this mass shooting, was adams a patient of the doctor. did he have concussions from
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playing football that could have had an adverse potential affect on his behavior? all of the things they are going to have to look at. >> for the most part, a lot of people know everyone. so it's a small town. >> reporter: he calls rock hill home, he played football with adams in south carolina state. >> he was a person that everyone on the team looked up to. >> reporter: some call this place football town usa. it is known for churning out elite athletic talent. >> kids dream of playing high school football and college football, and the nfl. it's a big football team town. >> reporter: adams played defensive back and making it to the top of his sport. the nfl. >> they are not usually the guys making the tackles on the field, but they can definitely sustain hard hits. here is why. one of the main duties is to guard receivers. when that receiver catches that ball. they have to try to bring them
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down. that can create impact. adams played in the leaguer to five years. starting his career with the 49ers in 2010. while playing adams sustained multiple injuries. >> great leaping interception by philip adams. >> reporter: including two concussions in three games in 2012. experts have not linked adams conkecussions to the shooting. everyone takes it differently, that is one of the toughest things of diagnosising and understanding concussions as it relates to playing football and contact sports. >> it can have but certainly with concussions or even repetitive impacts, that you have in contact sports, cognitive, emotional and later on, other problems can occur in a minority of people. >> reporter: new regulations in recent years have tried to quell
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the tide of head injuries to rules on hits and upgrades on helm helmets. >> it's heart to ascribe human behavior to an area of the brain. it's a tragic sad story for the victims and their families and for mr. adams and his family. >> reporter: i think you would find a lot of players out there that said is, football messed them up. did it mess him up to the extent that he committed a crime where it had a cause in him committing a crime? that is impossible to know. did it impair his judgment had in a way that made him vulnerable to commit a crime. again, that is impossible to know at this point. i think you will find a lot of players out there that said, as a rut of playing the game of football, my life has never been the same. these rock hill murders come on the heels of an already bloody year of gun violence, including the back on back shootings of
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atlanta spa shootings and a grocery store. >> enough prayers, time for action. >> reporter: the president announced limited executive action on gun control and called on the congress to act. >> i think they should pass three house bills to close loop poles that allow gun purchasers to by-pass the background checks. >> would any of it have an affect on the shooter? south carolina, it's hard to say. if he had no felony convictions he was eligible to buy a firearm. there's no easy fix through regulation to make the numbers go down. >> reporter: now, a town left in grief. grappling with this incomprehensible loss. >> you cannot go on facebook now, you cannot be in town now. you cannot do anything in town now without realizing what an impact that each of them have had on so many people. and that'ses something that will survive them.
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>> reporter: dr. leslie was a published author who chronicled 25 years of experience as an er doctor in his book, angels in the er, a life spent healing others. reflected in his own words. i know without a doubt had that life is fragile. >> our thanks to will. coming up what a deadly car crash reveals about the desperation at the u.s./mexico border. itchy? squirmy? scratchy? family not getting clean? get charmin ultra strong. go get 'em. it just cleans better. with a diamond weave texture, your family can use less while still getting clean. goodbye itchy squirm. hello clean bottom! we all go. why not enjoy the go with charmin. people everywhere living with type 2 diabetes
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. ♪ ♪ the crisis at the u.s./m
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u.s./mexico border exploding when a crash occurred. showing the perils that some are willing to face for a slim shot at a better future in america. >> reporter: at first it appeared to be a standard, fatal, tragic accident. an suv and truck colliding in this desert and then the heart stopping report. >> a semitruck colliding with an suv, packed with more than two dozen people. >> reporter: ask the chief told me, it's unfathomable how 25 people were crammed in one suv that are supposed to fit nine people safely. >> we need as many ambulances as you can send right now. >> reporter: dozens of people packed in the vehicle, andsuddenly this story was so much more. >> the fire department had to cut the right front seat out of the vehicle to help get people out of the vehicle. and in examining that after they hae done that, we do see that there are not seats in the rest
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of the vehicle. >> reporter: first responders combing through the wreckage, that suv carrying 25 undocumented migrants, all of them victims of the accident. men, women and children from places in latin america, departing together from maxicali, mexico. >> some were ejected so it's a chaotic scene. >> range of injuries are head traumas, a lot of on orthopaedics injuries. a lot of them were confused and some talked and were able to communicate to us a bit of a story. >> reporter: along the u.s. border the moment of impact reportedly a mere 15 miles where the suv burst through a hole in the bored fence, they appeared to be in a frenzied desperate push for new lives in the u.s. the migrants had paid up to $10,000 each to be smuggled across the border.
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this tragedy once again high lying the danger of lives dangling in the balance of a flawed immigration system. had in tend, 13 people all of them from inside the suv died. the new york times would put faces and names to several of those victims and the families now picking up the pieces on both sides of the border. one of the deceased, a 23-year-old law student. her father a construction worker in new york telling the "itimes" he was unaware she made the trimpt the reason, she was getting threats from gangs. and one of the survivors, jose martinez, staples holding his wounds closed, heading to utah to work with his uncle. the boy's uncertain journey to the u.s. a long one and his road to recovery much longer. earlier this evening i spoke with the photo journalist and
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new york times national immigration correspondent, who chronicled the stories of those killed in the crash. thank you both so much for joining us. >> our pleasure. >> let me start with you, miriam, the images of jose are so disturbing and i understand from your reporting he tried many times to cross the border. tell us about his life before the crash and what it says about the people fleeing to the borderer now? >> right, jose was the most moving character whom i met as i reported the story. he is just 16 years old. he comes from a village in mexico where his mom, brother, live in a one-room hut. they have nothing to their names. he wanted to help his family. so he arranged to come to america, and work in utah in construction and this happened. >> what is his prognosis, will he stay in the states? >> well, it's not clear whether he will be able to stay her
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long-term. but many people who do cooperate with authorities investigating crimes have an opportunity to apply for a witness protection kind of visa. >> and these 25 people did not climb in the suv on their own and this crash in many ways shows the light on the human smuggling that happens. >> absolutely, human smuggling enterprises are well and thriving along the border. you know, there's a lot of dispair now, the pandemic has ravaged economies in the developing world. people are looking to come to this country and often do work americans might not want to do. >> arianna, as a photo journalist, tell us why it's so stirring, the father holding the iphone with his daughter's picture in it. she looked like a woman with so much promise. >> that picture was taken, and the reason is, it puts a face to
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the name. right. so, a lot of times when you hear about migrants, people trying to seek a better future in the u.s. and then getting killed, or dying in tragic accidents. you know, it's not just a name. right. it's a face. and i think that's why it was impact. >> miriam, we were talking about jose martinez, he is just 18 and he told his mother there's no future in mexico and i want to work in the u.s. to support my family. what show, this recent surge, this human tide of miserry? >> he is a symbol of all the teenagers who are, you know, flooding the border now, you know, they are fleeing violence, they are fleeing poverty. you know, they are looking for opportunity. and do many of them have family
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in the united states who are prepared to receive them. so, jose knowing that he uncle who had come here many ago. he wanted to give it a try as well. >> well, ladies thank you both for your reporting and for joining us tonight with your insights. >> thank you. ♪ ♪ and up next, the ceremonial first pitch for the covid-19 survivor. throwing it straight to her hero. ♪ ♪ i'll be right back. with moderate to severe crohn's disease, i was there, just not always where i needed to be. is she alright? i hope so. so i talked to my doctor about humira. i learned humira is for people who still have symptoms of crohn's disease after trying other medications. the majority of people on humira saw significant symptom relief in as little as 4 weeks. and many achieved remission that can last. humira can lower your ability to fight infections.
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♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ comfort in the extreme. ♪ the lincoln family of luxury suvs.
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♪ ♪ finally tonight, the home run. hi name is carla, i'm a covid-19 survivor. >> surviving the fight of her life, carla of new york city, spending three weeks in a hospital last year. and her life saved by her doctor. with a innovative therapy and today, two throwing the ceremonial first pitch relay for the mets. carla celebrating a home run and a second shot at life. and that's "nightline" for tonight. you can watch all the full
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episodes on hulu, we will see you back here same time tomorrow. thanks for staying up with us. good night, america.

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