tv NBC Bay Area News Tonight NBC November 29, 2021 7:00pm-7:30pm PST
doing to get answers from big retailers. next on nbc bay area news tonight, what are we doing about it locally? the omicron variant, scientists say it has the potential to be the most contagious strain yet. our covid expert joins us to break down what you need to know and how the bay area is prepping for the potential spread. also, elizabeth holmes on the stand and in tears. what she said today about being raped at stanford and the abuse she suffered at the hands of her long-time boyfriend and theranos sfo sunny balwani. also, twitter founder jack dorsey is out, stepping down. why he says it's time to move on. plus -- >> around 11:00 p.m. we heard growling. >> not one, but two mountain lions on one city in the peninsula.
there are two reasons why we may be seeing them more in residential areas. good evening. this is nbc bay area news tonight. i'm raj mathai. back from thanksgiving, all that love with your friends and family, but quickly we're hit by this sobering reality. this omicron variant. might lead to a lot of changes in the bay area in the next several weeks. perhaps more travel bans and a rollback of covid regulations by many of our local counties. here's where we stand now. there is a lot going on here. this variant is not here in the united states as far as we know. but health leaders are already preparing for the arrival. the first confirmed case of this variant was detected by three weeks ago in south africa. as of today, it's been detected in a dozen other countries. canada among them, hong kong and the uk. late today the cdc urging everyone 18 and older to get
that booster shot because of the new variant. that bears repeating. if you are 18 and older, you are urged per the cdc to get that booster. it's a message that people in the bay area and health leaders are also echoing. people taking action today. the santa clara fairgrounds in san jose, hundreds getting their booster shots, many said the threat of this new variant helped convince them. >> we don't really have the data to support everything yet. so i want to make sure i am doing everything i can to stay safe >> in santa clara county and the bay area we are extraordinarily well placed because our vaccination rates are high. we have boosters available. people are getting boosted. we want people to get boosted if they have not gotten boosted yet. >> well, how concerned should we be and really what can we do here? we have tapped one of our covid experts for clear cut guidance on this. dr. peter chin-hong, nice to have you back on the program. perhaps the best way to ask this to you, what don't we know about
the omicron variant right now? >> well, raj, i think we are in the infancy in terms of our understand of omicron. the three main questions i ask myself are, is it more transmissable? it seems that way. it's acting like delta did in one region surge and spreading beyond that region. and that's in that province in south africa called gauteng. the second question is do our vaccines work? so far, so good. i mean, it's-related to some of the mutations we have seen and data and described in brazil and our vaccines work against it. even if it gets antibodies, our t-cells will kick the virus out if it enters the body. the third question is, does it cause us to get sicker? again, we don't really know full information, but so far it seems that it's affecting mainly young
unvaccinated individuals in south africa between the ages of 18 and 34. so i think that it may be milder, but again it hasn't really gone into the older population yet as we know it, and it's not sending people to the hospital in droves in south africa. >> doctor, when will you and your colleagues know? is it weeks away or two months away, if this is more damaging? >> well, i think we'll know in a matter of weeks. in south africa, then we can extrapolate it to the united states and other countries. i think we still really need to know even basic questions like, you know, do the antibodies generated by the vaccines neutralize this new enemy, and how much do they get hit by the mutations that we're seeing on the spike protein. >> we are so global here. we talked about this for so many
months with you. do you presume it's already here in the bay area? >> yes, undoubtedly it's here. we only sequenced about 1% to 2% of infected virus in this country where, you know, amongst the developed countries where amongst the lowest, say in england, the uk, for example, about 10% of cases. we have the technology. it takes a while to come back. there is a rapid screening for omicron that, say, the netherlands and other countries are using. we are not using that for visitors into the united states. but it's undoubtedly here already. >> why push for these boosters? correct me if i'm wrong. we don't know if they will work against omicron, correct? >> there is a very strong probability that they will work. so we want to give everyone the benefit of the doubt by building that force field and keeping that force field strong. i think that again, you know, there is a very strong
possibility that these vaccines will work because they have worked against all the other scarier looking variants in terms of vaccine invasion like beta, gamma, and even lamda that never really took off. given what we know, it makes sense to get that booster shot as soon as people can. >> dr. chin-hong, final question. a fundamental question here. is all of this is a byproduct that the rest of the world, specifically africa, it's undervaccinated and we saw this coming here? >> yes, definitely. every two weeks there is a new variant being created. only some of them rise to the most wanted list, and i it think omicron is just the latest of, you know, us revolving door of new variants that we'll see. we will have a conversation make in two months, raj, about some other greek letter named variant. >> we always appreciate your time and perspective with all of this. dr. peter chin-hong from ucsf.
thank you, doctor. >> thank you. >> how will we know when there is a reported case of omicron in the united states? state and local health departments are on the lookout. the doctor was talking about it. sequencing these covid samples, we don't see skbens enough like other countries, but we wanted to give you an idea how this works. someone goes in for a covid test. that sample is sent to a diagnostics lab and shows up as positive or negative. if it comes back positive, here's what's happens next. the sample may be sent to a second lab that sequences or analyzes the makeup. virus, figuring out what variant it might be. the result then goes to a state database. that database is used by scientists, epidemiologists and health leaders to watch how the virus is spreading. how many positive tests are sent to the sequencing labs? it depends here. but marin county, for example, tells us one-quarter of the positive tests ind up being
sequenced. right now 99% of all samples that come back as one variant, and that's the delta variant. our question of the day. is this omicron variant making you rethink your holiday plans? we asked it on facebook, twitter and instagram. we got a lot of responses. bob anniversary on twitter, we have been careful and will be smart and cautious. we have young grand children and want to be free of any variant. brenda replies on facebook, months ago i booked the extended family christmas for the first weekend in december. i expected a surge but i did not expect a new variant. we will have our event done before any new restrictions arrive. other stories on this monday night. a surge in gun violence in the east bay. today oakland mayor libby schaaf laying out her solution. her solution? adding more police officers to the police department. just yesterday police say a man was shot and killed steps away
from lake merritt after trying to stop a thief from breaking into someone's car. the shooter was in a black toyota rav4. the third homicide in one week. mayor schaaf wants to beef up the police force by adding at least one more academy and a rollback of some of the budget cuts to public safety that were approved earlier this year. >> that budget current freezes an additional 50 positions in the police department starting july 1st in 2022. and we will be proposing that we cancel some of those cuts. >> it is time for us to show up in a way in our community, so they can depend and trust that we are moving forward. >> the mayor says 38 cadets have joined the city's latest academy, but police union is losing ten officers each month to retirement or leaving for other departments. also tonight, of the 80 or so people that robbed that nordstrom, three arrested. today one of those three was arraigned. this happened nine days ago now.
dozens of thieves running from that nordstrom in broadway plaza into getaway cars. they stole about 200,000 bucks worth of merch. rodney robinson was arraigned and the judge ordered him kept in jail. business leaders want people involved to be held accountable and to send a message to the community. >> the holiday season is a special time. the gathering of family and friends and shopping is a significant part of that, and we're taking every precaution in our community to have people feel safe. >> as an added precaution police cars are now blocking the street in front of that nordstrom where the getaway cars all gathered during that robbery. the smash-and-grabs, the latest last night in the south bay. this is the fix kicks store, which sells high-end shoes and designer clothes. dozens broke in just before
midnight. this is the second time this specific store has been hit in the past week. no arrests in either burglary. well, also tonight a shocking turn of of events in that san jose courtroom. for the first time theranos founder elizabeth holmes spoke about the abuse she says she suffered at the hands of her long-time boyfriend and former theranos sfo sunny balwani. she testified that balwani abused her physically and verbally. holmes also tearfully told the jury she left stanford early because she was raped as a student. our business and tech reporter scott budman was in court. this comes as a big shock because i don't think we have ever read or heard about this. how did this come about in court? >> it's still part of the elizabeth holmes origin story, why she started theranos, why she pursued it so doggedly. it was a surprise when she said that's why she left stanford and in processing her experience and what happened to her she decided to put her life and energies
into theranos. you're right. it was a big surprise in the courtroom. it took a turn all of a sudden. >> we covered her for years. we haven't heard about any sort of sexual misconduct at stanford against her. >> so much of her origin story was let's say mark zuckerberg or anyone who left college early because they had a big idea and was able to get funding for it and that is sort of how theranos started. so her origin story taking that dramatic very personal turn, the courtroom got very quiet all of a sudden. >> okay. talking about she suffered abuse by her fellow theranos executive, sunny balwani. >> they were together for ten years. >> can you describe some of the things she detailed today? >> yeah. she talked about very controlling. she talked about abuse, both physically, that we don't want to get into it, emotionally, telling her to make lists, telling her she was mediocre, telling her she had to be more manly to succeed and a
psychological beatdown as well as a physical beating. it was hard to listen to. for the jury you could see them suck in their breath. for the last few days they have been impressed by, maybe a little bit charmed by, and now to have this dark portion of her life come to light when they knew her partner, her mother, friends were in the courtroom was really, it was just a thick experience of very much sadness. >> here is the challenge. we are talking about a really dark part of her personal life. how does this come into why we are in court specifically? did she knowingly defraud investors? >> it's tough. that's what the -- it's going to be a challenge because now the defense that had her on direct examination has finished today and they finished on this very emotional note. now the prosecution we expect to go away from her personal life and in the business life and did she defraud investors. i don't think her personal struggles are going to get much play from here on out, only because, you're right, raj, it's kind of tough to make that
connection. they even, on the defense, direct examination, asked if sunny told her what to say to investors or reporters and she admitted, no, he did not. >> cross-examination begins tomorrow. >> tomorrow. >> we have more with you in a moment. another story. jack dorsey leaving twitter. scott will stick with us to talk about why he is leaving. is there hidden meaning here and who is take over. and a couple of mountain lions spotted is putting a peninsula neighborhood a little concerned on edge, rightfully so. you're watching nbc bay area news tonight.
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okay. he is stepping down from twitter. jack dorsey will no longer serve as ceo of the company he founded. dorsey tweeting in part, i believe the company is ready to move on from its founders. i want you all to know that this is my decision and i own. it was a tough one. i love the service and company. there aren't many companies that get to this level. his resignation is effective immediately. he will also leave twitter's board of directors. is there -- i ask this as a journalist, is there more to the story? usually there is. what do you say? >> there are a few thins. yeah, there are activist investors trying to get him to leave twitter. twitter has grown in the way that it's very important for us news people to be on twitter.
the stock hasn't moved much. they often blame quarterback. there has been pressure to get jack out and new leadership in. he has been ceo of two companies, square also in san francisco for years, and a lot of people say, hey, just think what we could do if he dedicated 100% to us. >> so out with twitter. but staying with square. one of the coolest parts of your job, get to talk to these guys before they are big megastars. this is a clip from almost ten years when he started square. take a listen. >> and we took a lot of great pains to make sure we could build something that people would be able to work in and feel inspired by and creative. >> he doesn't have a beard there. he looks like he is about 19. >> at the end of that day he says, i want to give you a book that's very important to me in the business world. it's written by bill walsh, the coach. he says, have you heard of bill
walsh? come on. he very serious about what he does. this good news for square and eventually for twitter. they are staying inside with their chief technology officer, but it's anytime you get new leadership, you get a new energy in a company. >> yeah, parag agrawal, their c will be elevated to ceo. >> with microsoft, they took someone not a founder, satya nay nadella has done well. it's pleasing investors. it's hiring people so they don't go to, you know, facebook or snap or tiktok. it's really in a competitive area even though it has a that huge advantage when it comes to news. >> you have done expensive reporting on indian ceos. i was born in india and i didn't turn into a ceo. must have missed in the gene pool there. look at this. you know many of these
gentlemen. just the education in tech is strong? >> very much so. the education system in india is strong and the default used to be, well, we will start something in india. now, hey, we are going to silicon valley and start a company. so this there is a lot of back and forth. when i was in india i saw a lot of americans visiting. it's a great relationship and technology and consumers benefit 100%. >> i love the interview with jack dorsey. let's move on. here is something you don't see too often. we see plenty of mountain lions on the peninsula, but this mountain lion on a casual stroll in the middle of the day. this is san bruno and it's only one of the two big cats spotted in this neighborhood. here is ginger. >> reporter: this quiet residential street doesn't see much action. you could imagine the shock and fear that people felt when they saw a mountain lion make its way down the street in the middle of the day. the mountain lion sighting caught on video left these kids
and their mom in wonder and abit alarmed. the night before the burdette family heard suspicious noises. >> around 11:00 p.m. we heard growling and roaring. we look outside the window and saw two mountain lions walking down the sidewalk on wednesday night. we lived here four years. that was the first time we saw one. >> reporter: on thanksgiving, liz and her three boys were even more shocked. >> we saw a mountain lion in broad daylight giving itself a bath across the street. when we saw it during broad daylight it made it a little scarier. >> reporter: it was its first daytime sighting in the san bruno neighborhood. a neighbor who lived there 40 years says her first time. the number of a mountain lion sightings has been normal for this time of year, but wildlife may be coming into nor urban places because of the drought and summer wildfires and also people are just more equipped to catch wildlife with video and
photos. they say if you spot a mountain lion, day or night, it is important to report it to the authorities or local law enforcement. >> okay. a little tense there in san bruno. we hope everyone will be safe. take you outside on this monday night. a live look at sfo. jeff ranieri is going to join us next with this week's forecast. also, klay thompson back in action, but not at chase center. we will tell you where and why.
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news tonight. look at this. this could be the hottest ticket in town. maybe not the warriors at chase center, but the warriors g league team down in santa cruz. klay thompson has been signed to the santa cruz warriors. their next home game is december 3rd. we might see klay in action for the first time in 2 1/2 years. still no set date for his return to the warriors, but we are getting close. jeff ranieri with us now. >> he is getting headlines down there, too. >> how are we doing? >> good. >> it's warm. >> i know. end of november. definitely a little out of whack here. high pressure here and that's going to give us, well, some chilly weather to start. we will begin with 40s across the bay area and also some patchy fog. through the day tomorrow some hazy sunshine, upper 60s and low 70s. that puts us at 70 santa rosa,
70 concord, 71 san jose, near the coastline, mid-60s san francisco to half moon bay. the one problem you might have here is the air quality. we are moderate from the north bay down to the south bay. so if you have any asthma or respiratory problems, that could bother you. the seven-day forecast. we get 70s next three days. then some 60s coming in by this weekend. a system near the coast next monday do offer some showers next tuesday and wednesday, raj. tonight at 11:00, jewel thieves are swiping valuables from seniors across the bay area. the thefts happening in plain sight without victims even noticing until it's too late. we will hear from one victim and have some tips on how to protect yourself. and coming up in prime time, should be a lot of fun. at 8:00 "the voice" followed by jimmy fallon's new show called "that's my jam" at 10:00 and then we hope to see you back here at 11:00 for our late news. that does it for us here at 7:00. for everyone here at nbc bay area, thanks for joining us.
emergency planning for kids. we can't predict when an emergency will happen. so that's why it's important to make a plan with your parents. here are a few tips to stay safe. know how to get in touch with your family. write down phone numbers for your parents, siblings and neighbors. pick a place to meet your family if you are not together and can't go home. remind your parents to pack an emergency supply kit. making a plan might feel like homework, but it will help you and your family stay safe during an emergency.
ling but it will help you and your family stay safe anxious about the future, you're not alone. calhope offers free covid-19 emotional support. call 833-317-4673 or live chat at calhope.org today. my first thought is that person is obviously going through some things. >> from body share to loss of first husband valerie bertonelli has been through so much in the past year. why she's splitting from husband tom vitale. >> i have been married, he has been married. >> unfortunately, that's the way he took it. >> was it prince charles that caused the royal racial controversy? add to that a new bombshell dropped about the queen. >> gone too soon.