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tv   NBC Bay Area News at 5  NBC  November 20, 2021 5:00pm-5:30pm PST

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right now at 5:00, the cleanup begins after a wild night in san francisco. thieves run from store the store in a string of smash and grab robberies. what the mayor and police chief are saying tonight. plus, a major scare at a major airport. fear of an active shooter cause panic. police searching for the man who fired that shot. a new development in san jose state sex abuse scandal. how much the university is paying nearly two dozen former student athletes. the news at 5:00 starts
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right now. thanks for joinings. >> san francisco's mayor and police chief say there will be changes in union square after a wild scene last night. dozen os people running into a high end store and ransacking it. >> today shoppers are stunned. here's nbc bay area's christy smith. >> reporter: videos on social media show a night that turned out of control in union square. the louis vuitton store looted. people running away with as much merchandise as they could carry. >> i heard that on the news this morning. i'm really sad about it. it's a beautiful city. >> reporter: a much different picture today as the holiday ice rink and decorations remind shopper of the season. but boarded windows reminding them of friday night. former mayor willie brown was in union square today and had this to say. >> i think it's horrible. i think it really has to be
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something seriously done about union square. this is going to be the shopping district. >> reporter: police responded quickly and arrested eight people, incluing a person in a car who they say was armed. we've learn a number of businesses in different parts of the city were hit, including a cannabis dispensary and wall greens. >> what happened last night is absolutely unacceptable. >> reporter: the police chief and mayor are promising action. >> we will flood this area with police officers for the foreseeable future. as you walk around today you see police officers all around union square, but we're not going to stop at union square. >> we are not going to let people turn it into an ugly city. this is a beautiful city. we will protect this city. >> reporter: the mayor adding changes might be coming for drivers near union square in response to the violence. many shoppers are still trying to make sense of it. >> it is very heartbreaking. it is heartbreaking. >> reporter: police say they
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expect more assists. in san francisco, christy smith, nbc bay area news. moments of panic at atlanta's airport after a gun was accident sli fired. passages flooding out. a passenger was caught with a gun at screening. when tsa flagged him the man grabbed the gun and it fired. three people were hurt during the evacuation. the suspect has not been caught. that scare comes at a busy time for travelers. a tsa spokesperson says more than 2 million travelers screened at checkpoints nationwide yesterday. that is the busiest day since the pandemic began back in early 2020. aaa predicts more than 53 million americans are going travel over the thanksgiving holiday. a huge rebound from last year. >> sure is a lot of people. county super visor david canepa is running for congress.
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he declared his congressional bid, he says the hospital is symbolic, because it's the same place where he was born. now it's the birthplace of his candidacy for congress. he says he wants to amplify san matteo county's voices in d.c. >> i'm gathered here today with you, some of my closest friends and allies to make a special, special announcement. we are running for congress! [ cheers and applause ] >> he'll be running for the seat currently held by congresswoman jackie spears. she represents district 14, which includes most of san mateo county and southwestern san francisco. spear announced tuesday she'll not seek re-election, saying it's time for her to be more than a weekend wife. san jose state university is paying out more than $3.3 million to be split among 15 student athletes that were
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sexually harassed by a sports trainer there. it's the latest on the a scandal that prompted a federal investigation. the investigation found dozens of female athletes were abused by a long time trainer and that the university in order complaints for more than a decade. the payout is the second largest settlement by the university tied to this investigation. today the universe released a statement saying changes are being made to ensure nothing like this happens again. today marks a solemn remembrance for trans. comes nearly a year to the day after a deadly stabbing there. two people killed and another three hurt last year. one victim was transgender. her picture is included on the memorial. they were both homeless and taking shelter from the cold.
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their attacker was staying at the shelter as well. there's a concert plans for the event. it's a rush to get booster shots before the holidays pick up. how many people have gotten them so far -- as of tonight, more than 3 million americans have gotten the booster shot. that according to the cdc. that's about 17% of americans fully vaccinated. california's numbers are the same. about 4 million have gotten the booster, which is about 18% an adults already vaccinated. thousands gathers in austria to protest the lockdown movement in response to covid cases that threatens to overwhelm intensei care units. it was initially going to be solely for the unvaccinated but the government changes that to everyone and it begun on monday. 65% of austria's population is vaccinated. that's one of the lowest rates in western europe. starting february 1st, austria
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will make vaccinations mandatory for everyone. lockdown have driven oil prices to their lowest. crude oil don't have an immediate impact on prices. friday, the national average for a gallon of regular was $34.01, which is up seven cents from last month. here in california, prices are much higher as you already know, right? current average is $47.00 a gallon. a month ago it was $45.02 a year ago, gas was just $3.17 a gallon. >> last year was the good old days. still ahead, the training program for foreign student in the u.s. may leave a back door open to fraud. >> we had hundreds if not thousands of foreign nationals openly lying about why they were working and what they were doing. obviously there were very serious national security implication there is. >> see how our team uncovered
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dozens of fake companies and what homeland security says to a major threat to national security. and our clearing sty sky, drier air setting the stage for a chilly night? 62 in san francisco. who could see 30s by tomorrow morning? we come right back.
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i did some early shopping this year. one for you, one for me. awww. i love it. i got us a little something, too. yeah? yep. one for you and one for me. i love it! oh! actually, that was.. i love it! i like red. current eligible gmc owners get over 25 hundred purchase allowance on 2021 gmc sierra light duty crew cab models when you finance through gm financial. we are professional grade. gmc a high risk to national security from foreign espionage. that is the conclusion about a massive job training program for foreign students. >> it's called the f-1 optional
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practical training program or opt for short. after year of digging senior investigator steven stock continues to find possible fraud and thousand of students working for companies that appear not to exist. >> reporter: this dhs am budsman report from our report that airs two years ago says the vulnerabilities in the f-1 visa program still have not been fixed and foreign spies could be exploiting the vulnerabilities to steal u.s. technology. we went door to door. from a business park along i-880. >> they're no longer here. we're renovating the suite. >> reporter: to a private home in sunny vail. >> there's no one here associated with that name. >> reporter: from a fremont
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dentist office -- to this empty building in a neighborhood outside dallas, texas. all of them addresses listed on the web side and business filings of a company called innovative intelligence solutions. department of homeland security records show that company employeed more than 200 students in the f-1 optional practical training program, or opt, since 2017. >> thank you for calling innovative intelligence solutions. >> reporter: dhs lists innovative intelligence solutions as one of the top 200 employers of f-1 student in data that dhs published a few years ago, but it appears the company doesn't exist. >> sorry, but the user's mailbox can't accept more messages. >> reporter: and it's not the only suspicious company on the list we found. >> and we got one phone number for them. >> reporter: we tried tracking down a dozen of those companies. >> yes, i'm trying to get an ahead of hr or ceo.
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we got disconnected phone lines. >> your call cannot be transferred. >> reporter: voice messages that could not take messages. we have data from 2019 and they close in the 2018. sounds suspicious. and representatives couldn't provide detail about the company. two show this address in oklahoma with this big modern building as one of their offices. but when you look at that address on google maps, this is what you find, an old empty building and our data producer sean meyers found that building they were showing a their website more than 500 miles away from durant. >> this building is supposed to be in oklahoma but i'm standing here in new orleans and as you can see, it's right behind me. >> the federal indictment saying the ceo -- >> reporter: we first uncovered these phantom companies in 2018 after a mountain vue businesswoman pled guilty in
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federal court to conspiracy to commit fraud. federal prosecutors say her company findream charged students hundreds for fake employment papers so they could stay in the u.s. we started knocking on doors and found dozens of other suspicious companies. after we reported what we found, dhs stopped publishing that information on companies that employed students. >> the concern a lot of us were beginning to have is this fraud was going unchecked. >> reporter: jon served as senior adviser to director of dhs. he left dhs when the new administration took office. >> when you have dozens and dozens and dozens of foreign nationals entering the exact same place of business, and that place of business doesn't actually exist, you know that it's fraud. >> reporter: feere now works for
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the center for immigration study, a conservative think tank in washington. he worries not enough has been done to fix the problem by either administration. >> we had hundreds if not thousands of foreign nationals openly lying to dhs about where they were working and what they were doing. obviously there are very serious national security implication there is. >> had we known this was a fraudulent company, i would say 90% of these people would never have chosen the companies. >> reporter: this houston labor lawyer tells us they were getting calls from foreign student about to be deported because they were employed by fake companies. he said many of the students might be victims here. >> they fell into the trap laid by these companies. 4,000 people getting opt from a company that transferred from a salon or massage place? that's a problem. >> reporter: this worries f-1
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advocates who argues the program does a lot of the aggregate eff overall -- >> reporter: he says the opt program attracts the best and brightest from around the world to the u.s., allowing foreign college students to stay in the country for up to three years after they graduate if they find work related to their area of study. >> so if your region attracts more opt participants you're likely to see more patenting and innovation taking place there. >> it's great work that you did, but we need to do more. >> reporter: this congressman of walnut creek does not want to end the program but did say our reporting should spur congress to fix system, something he pledged to try. >> thank you for the work you're doing, but it's encumbent on us in congress to provide the oversight to hold people
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accountable and persuade people from trying to do this and protect honest people. >> reporter: we tried to ask the department of homeland security about all this but they said they could not talk to us, citing an ongoing investigation. in an interview two years ago, dhs did say that they worked behind the scenes to catch bad actors using the exact same data we've used. last year, they did arrest 15 students on fraud charges, but so far, no companies have been publicly charged beyond findream and another associated company. i'm stefan stock, nbc bay area news. >> stefan, thank you. if you have a story for our investigative unit, all you have to do is call 888-996-tips. or you can visit our website, nbc bay area.com/investigations. boy, a story of an absolutely gorgeous, spectacular saturday. rob, it was fantastic. >> yeah, clear skies, warm temperatures. though we have reached an interesting part of the year
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where you need an extra blanket at night, thick coat in the evening and t-shirt weather by the afternoon. upper 60s. 62 with clear skies outside. dublin, 61 degrees. it was the breezy dry offscore breezes which helped dry out the air and keep the fog out of the area. walnut creek seeing 60. san francisco, west northwest wind aft 14, 59 degrees currently. i think as the breezes back off we'll see more fog as we head into next week. the areas that will see 30s tonight, lake county, mendocino county. for some of the wind shelters valley, santa rosa, probably will see upper 30s for the north bay valley. winter weather for the morning, then watch what happens by lunchtime. mid 60s.
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dress warm sunday. may fin tish day with 70s, south of san jose, morgan hill, san da utah cruz, everyone upper 60s in the north bay after the chilly start to the morning. the top concern this week with thanksgiving plans, patchy fog across the central valley. doesn't look like we're going to see rain. the one chance that could bring showers to northern california looks to be tuesday. the storm track for the most part is going to hang out in the pacific northwest, so it is very likely from now to the end of next weekend, those rain chances are going to be staying anchored to the north. all the way through next weekend, both medium range models keeping things quite dry but the seven-day forecast, which overall is great news for your thanksgiving plans around the bay area. temperatures are going the stay mild. mild afternoon, san francisco, low to mid 60s as we go through the week. inland forecast looking pretty
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good as well temperature wise. chilly mornings, mild afternoons. travel fog the top concern around here. central valley locations during the week, for now, a pretty dry look seven-day forecast as we head towards the holiday weekend. >> can't argue with the weather it's just going to be there. gorgeous. if we're not going get rain, this is a nice way to go. thanks a lot. getting to coachella from silicon valley just got a little easier. the big announcement coming up next.
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it's been in the works for years but today a new pedestrian bridge open in the palo alto. if you drive 101 you might have seen it. the mississippi than 100 feet over. you probably noticed the construction if you drive 101 that's been going on for a while. it didn't take long, as you can see, for people to get up there. look at the new bridge that will allow for year round access to the mainland. >> a lot of people already using it. looks good. traling between silicon valley and coachella valley got more convenient. today the airports announced they'll start running daily flights between the two cities. the san jose airport director says it has been a top requested route for several years.
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so every morning flights will leave san jose to palm springs and head back to san jose. alaska airlines will provide the daily service. >> san jose rocks. this rocks as well. still ahead, nourishing neighbors. how much has already been raised, next.
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with the holidays nearly here, many families, maybe your
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own neighbors, may be in need. >> we here at nbc bay area are teaming up with our partners at telemundo and safeway. so far we've collected $113,000 in donations. members of bay area family were at a safeway in bay area getting the word out. they spoke to other members who say this food drive is important since we're still fighting to come out of the pandemic. >> people don't realize a lot of people still haven't been able to go become to work or they have had their hours cut, and so -- and plus, they have rent that's due, you know, back rent from the pandemic. and so they're really struggling still to make ends meet. >> the food drive runs through christmas. you can make a donation at any safeway store. we'll be back in a moment.
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finally tonight, we're celebrating a little here at nbc bay area. that's because a former star with ties to the station helped the washington spirit win its first national women's soccer league title. >> a lot of reasons to tell you about this. tiegen mcgrady and the spirit beat chicago in the championship game. couldn't get much closer. in fact, in regular time they didn't have a winner. winning score came in extra time. mcgrady is a defender for the spirit. she is from san jose, and she's a winner. she won a national championship with stanford in 2017. oh, but there's more. here she is after the match with her mother and father, and her father looks very familiar to
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those of us at nbc bay area. his name is willie mcgrady, our director of broadcast operations. congratulations to tiegen and the wash spirit and i think willie's going to have that smile on his face, it's going to be locked on. >> proud parent. what a beautiful family as well. congratulations to them. >> thanks for watching. nightly news is next. breaking news tonight. chaos at the airport after a passenger fires as gun while stopped at a tsa check point. travellers at atlanta's airport running for safety, flights grounded, the gunman fleeing and it happened during the historic holiday travel surge the nation's airports hitting a new record ahead of thanksgiving. protests from portland to new york in the wake of the kyle rittenhouse acquittal. the new video of his reaction immediately after the verdict. >> the jury reached the correct verdict. self defense is not illegal. >> reporter: as a father of one of the men he killed speaks out to us. boosters for all, the new recommendation

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