tv NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt NBC May 17, 2022 6:30pm-7:01pm PDT
the supermarket where ten people were killed and meeting with victims' families. and the new details, the suspect's online rant showing the attack was months in the planning his previous visit to the store back in march and the other targets he allegedly considered also tonight, the baby formula shortage. house democrats unveiling a $28 million emergency bill to address the crisis as u.s. companies turn abroad to find supply how soon could imported formula hit shelves. news on covid. the fda okaying booster shots for children 5 to 11 new york city raising its level to high. the victory for russia and mariupol after hundreds of ukrainian soldiers were evacuated from a steel plant. richard engel in ukraine. it's election night. five states holding primaries including a wild race in pennsylvania newly declassified video revealed of the first public congressional hearing on ufos in more than 50 years.
the tale of triumph for a baby giraffe "inspiring america. >> announcer: this is "nbc nightly news" with lester holt good evening a solemn journey to buffalo for president biden today meeting with some of the grieving families who lost loved ones in saturday's supermarket massacre the president and first lady visiting the site the president offering comfort and giving full-throated voice to the anger so many feel over the racist ideologies that drove the attack that allegedly targeted black people the president declaring white supremacy will not have the last word this evening a chill still sweeping across buffalo as the pieces of the horrific plot reveal themselves. tonight what we've learned about the suspect's previous journey to the city, the planning, the alternate targets allegedly considered all under the nose of an unsuspecting community. emilie ikeda has new details for us tonight.
>> evil will not win, i promise you. >> reporter: today president biden and the first lady near the tops grocery store at the memorial site for ten people killed in a hate-fueled shooting rampage as they shopped on a saturday afternoon >> white supremacy is a poison it's been allowed to fester and grow right in front of our eyes. >> reporter: president biden denouncing hate and again pushing for stricter gun control >> we can keep assault weapons off our streets. we've done it before. >> reporter: and tonight we're learning more about the 18-year-old suspect's months' long preparation for his twisted attack nbc news has reviewe a series of online rants on the chat forum discord which appear to be written by the suspect where he describes his reconnaissance mission at the store back in march, detailing how he mapped out the store's aisles, was confronted by a store security guard for repeatedly entering the store and considered a school and churches as other possible targets he thought would have high percentages of black people >> you think you've seen the suspect
before >> no, i know i saw him. he was in my store. >> reporter: rose is a produce manager at tops >> he had said to me, you're out of place here you look like you belong out in the suburbs. >> reporter: on the day of the shooting spree she took cover in a conference room. >> i could hear the gunfire. it was just like massive gunshots, just massive, and you could hear them getting closer and closer and closer. >> reporter: while nearby 8-year-old london thomas hid behind her dad as the suspect opened fire. >> we all ran to the back, like at the place where the milk freezer is at, and he was shooting at the milk and then the milk was like leaking through the middle. >> reporter: the staggering loss here is heartbreaking roberta drury, margus morrison, andre mackneil, aaron salter, celestine chaney, heyward patterson, katherine massey, pearl young, ruth whitfield and geraldine talley. talley's sister describing her final
moments shopping with her fiance >> he said bullets were actually flying by his head and i do believe at that time my sister was already shot >> emilie, a new york prosecutor is weighing in on how authorities responded following the suspect's threat at his high school last year. >> reporter: that's right. the broom county district attorney says police and school officials followed protocol when they put the suspect in a mental health evaluation he was soon released lester >> emilie, thank you. in dallas this evening a suspect is under arrest in a shooting at a hair salon in the koreantown section of the city last week three women of korean descent were wounded and the case is now being investigated as a hate crime police say the suspect who is black suffered delusions and had received mental health treatment. police are looking into whether there are connections to other local crimes let's turn now to the nationwide shortage of baby formula. house speaker nancy pelosi suggested today without being specific
that indictments could eventually be handed down she made the comment as desperation grows around the country here is jo ling kent >> reporter: tonight growing outrage among parents as the formula shortage drags on. >> i'm actually terrified. i don't know how i'm going to feed him. >> reporter: the fda facing new calls for accountability one day after it struck an agreement with abbott nutrition to re-open its michigan formula facility within two weeks. house democrats are proposing $28 million in emergency funding for the fda to restore formula supply and increase fda staff for inspection did the fda fail parents? >> yes the fda fell down on their job in terms of protecting babies and parents. and what we're trying to do with this legislation is to provide the infrastructure and to
provide resources, funding. >> reporter: the agreement requires abbott nutrition to hire an independent inspector to evaluate the plant and install automatic sampling technology, which experts expect will be completed soon in february abbott issued a voluntary recall and closed the plant after reports of serious bacterial infections in four infants, including two deaths abbott has said there's no evidence to link its formulas to the illnesses, but with at least eight weeks until abbott's formula hits the shelf, the fda announced increased flexibilities to import formula from australia, new zealand and the united kingdom, which the agency says has similar safety inspections to the u.s. the fda telling nbc news products that can confidently meet our standards could hit u.s. stores in a matter of weeks. but parents like candace hendricks who spends every day on a quest for formula to feed her 3-month-old son kasen who has a
dairy allergy are concerned. >> that would be one of the last options i would have i would definitely try it if it's something that he could tolerate >> reporter: for now hendricks is relying solely on formula samples from her pediatrician's office. >> my worst fear is that when i call to schedule a pickup for samples, that they will say -- sorry -- that they don't have any more. >> reporter: jo ling kent, nbc news, los angeles. >> a real struggle for a lot of americans in ukraine, one of the longest and bloodiest battles of the war has ended. hundreds of ukrainian troops at that steel plant in mariupol have now surrendered. it's a major victory for russia which now controls the city. richard engel is in ukraine tonight. >> reporter: in the end, hunger and injuries won out over bravery. more than 200 ukrainian fighters bunkered down for
weeks beneath the mariupol steel factory surrendered to russian troops they'd fought even though they were outnumbered and surrounded as russian troops bombed the city relentlessly destroying a theater where hundreds of children were sheltering and a maternity hospital the steel factory was their last hold-out, their alamo, but it couldn't last forever. the fighters, including many seriously wounded, were bused to a russian controlled enclave in ukraine ukraine's president zelenskyy said combat operations in mariupol are over for now "ukraine needs ukrainian heroes alive. that's our principle," he said. the ukrainian government said they'll be part of a prisoner swap, but russia said tonight it's considering labeling the ukrainian soldiers members of a terrorist group and will investigate each fighter for possible
crimes against civilians. it appears to be russia's way of pressuring ukraine not to put more russian soldiers on trial for war crimes the loss of mariupol is a significant blow to ukraine and a victory for russia, which now controls its first major ukrainian city since russia invaded this country nearly three months ago. lester? >> richard engel in ukraine, thank you. we're watching key races on this primary election night a look to where the nation's political winds are blowing. a new nbc news poll find three-quarters of americans say the country is on the wrong track. what does that mean for the midterms this fall? dasha burns reports from pennsylvania. >> how are you feeling? >> reporter: conservative commentator kathy barnette headed to the polls today hoping to capitalize on her late surge in this tight senate primary barnette made claims of election rigging and voter fraud in 2020 but a different message today. >> can the voters you're asking to turn
out for you today trust this process and trust in the results of this primary? >> you know what we all have such a wonderful opportunity. make sure you're coming out and voting. don't allow anything discourage you >> reporter: her rivals in the race bringing big names and big money. >> what if this -- i'll give it to you. >> reporter: celebrity dr. mehmet oz received donald trump's endorsement but hasn't been able to capitalize on it why aren't you running away with this thing >> 35 million reasons why i haven't run away with the election but i'm in the lead and i will win on tuesday. there is a lot of outside money coming in people are uncomfortable with an outsider like me. >> reporter: businessman david mccormick pushing his america first message even as he's taken shots from former president trump. at a rally recently he said you were more pat toomey than maga what do you say to that >> well, listen. i knew when i got into this race it would be rough and tumble i knew the president would double down. and i think that's
what's happening. >> reporter: on the democratic side front-runner john fetterman casting an emergency ballot today from the hospital after suffering a stroke >> we're not different than any other family facing a health scare like many other americans do. >> reporter: his wife giselle will headline his event tonight as the candidate remains hospitalized set to have a pacemaker implanted. and in the race for governor, presumptive democratic nominee josh shapiro off the trail. he just tested positive for covid it's the latest twist in a set of races going down to the wire lester >> dasha, thank you. for more join chuck todd and kristen welker tonight for the "meet the press" election special streaming on nbc news now. now to a major development in the battle against covid the fda authorizing booster shots for pfizer's vaccine for children 5 to 11 the cdc could give the final signoff by thursday, but it comes as data show less than a third of kids 5 to 11 have received their first two doses. also tonight, new york city raising its covid
alert level to high as new cases and hospitalizations continue to rise tonight actress amber heard returning to the stand for cross-examination in the contentious $50 million defamation suit filed by ex-husband johnny depp miguel almaguer has the courtroom drama. >> i would -- >> yes or no >> -- try everything >> reporter: the contentious. >> you would harang him. is that correct? you would harang him >> reporter: the confrontational cross-examination of amber heard allowed johnny depp's legal team their first full day to scrutinize his ex-wife's testimony. >> you weren't scared of him at all, were you? >> this is a man who tried to kill me of course, it's scary. he's also my husband >> reporter: attempting to turn the tables on a sometimes visibly frustrated heard, depp's attorneys laid out a case where the actress tormented the actor. >> you called him a sellout. right, ms. heard >> i called him a lot of ugly things. >> and a joke. >> i called him a lot
of ugly things. >> you called him a joke on that recording. you called him a washed up piece of [ bleep ]. >> reporter: depp's team also using audio recordings where they say heard fueled fights. >> i'm really, really, really sick of this argument >> stop. i'm sorry. >> okay? so let me go and you go and i'll speak to you in a couple of hours. okay okay >> stop. >> why are you saying stop >> because you -- >> may i go? >> reporter: beyond painting heard as the antagonizer and abuser and drug user herself, depp's attorneys also accused her of embellishing alleged bruises, questioning how she could have been abused one day and on the red carpet the next >> your nose doesn't appear to be injured in any of these pictures, does it, ms. heard? >> that's why i'm wearing makeup. >> right and makeup covers up swelling, right? >> reporter: with each actor claiming to be the victim of physical abuse, depp is suing heard for 50 million after she wrote an op-ed calling herself a domestic abuse
survivor heard is countersuing for 100 million. with the trial expected to last another week, the world will soon learn more sordid details behind the curtain of a hollywood marriage miguel almaguer, nbc news. in 60 seconds, hundreds of possible new encounters reported with ufos congress says it wants to know what's out there.
they're officially called unidentified aerial phenomena or uaps we know them better as ufos, and today top pentagon officials told congress there have been reports of hundreds of them gadi schwartz explains the so far unexplainable. >> reporter: tonight new video of a ufo shown to lawmakers in congress raising more questions than answers. >> i do not have an explanation for what this specific object is >> reporter: the footage recorded from a fighter pilot's cell
phone capturing a few frames of a metallic object >> uaps are unexplained, it's true, but they are real they need to be investigated and many threats they pose need to be mitigated. >> reporter: pentagon officials using the video during a congressional hearing as an illustration of how hard it is to determine what the objects actually are last year, the pentagon releasing a report looking into more than 140 cases of what they called unidentified aerial phenomena. >> look at that thing, dude >> reporter: today pentagon officials said at least 18 cases included sensor data showing the objects behaving in ways they could not explain but also releasing video of other cases they say are likely man-made drones appearing to swarm navy ships during a series of incidents that involved an object seen dropping into the water. >> splash, splash. >> do we have any sensors underwater to detect on submerged uaps >> i think that would be more appropriately addressed in closed session. >> reporter: intelligence committee
members then briefed behind closed doors while other members of congress expressed frustration over a lack of answers. >> i do not fear the american public knowing what we have i would sure as heck would like them to see it >> reporter: the committee hopes it will mean more service members come forward and already the stigma seems to be lifting. the pentagon saying they received hundreds of new reports in the year alone. lester >> a lot to consider there. gadi, thank you. up next the buffalo supermarket attack shining a light on the food access crisis facing communities across the country.
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a shooting at a buffalo supermarket has not only shaken the community, it's also left people stranded for now in a food desert. those are areas that lack access to healthy affordable food. and they're growing across the country here's ron allen >> would you like a juice? >> reporter: tonight in this neighborhood still grieving makeshift food pantries popping up for residents in desperate need of fresh food. >> it's really, really important. people have to come together to help one another. >> reporter: tops, the only big grocery store for miles, remains a closed crime scene, what was an oasis in a food desert. >> i stumbled and got knocked to the floor and, you know, just was crawling >> reporter: manager fragrance harris standfield was near the front when the gunman blasted in and says tops was more than a grocery store a meeting place, a community hub. >> this is our only major chain grocery store in the area so
we need this, you know, and it's been here for 20 years. >> reporter: the only market with fresh produce and meats in a neighborhood where many residents walk and don't have cars. nationwide some 50 million people, 17% of americans, live more than half a mile from a grocery store. what if this grocery store stays closed for a time >> honestly, i don't know what we'll do. >> reporter: today volunteers pitching in to help. does being here help deal with what happened >> absolutely. there is a lot who of senior citizens who lost their lives and it's very sad. >> reporter: despite the horror they witnessed, tops workers like fragrance say they will return to work. you sound determined. >> i am because this is our store, and this is our community >> reporter: and tonight investigators continue their work at the store that's still a crime scene with no indication from officials when it might re-open. lester? >> the strength of a community there, ron. thanks very much up next, she was barely able to walk at birth. next how doctors turned a life or death condition into a runaway success.
>> reporter: painfully adorable and just plain painful. baby msituni struggles with every step. what do you remember about the first time you saw her? >> we realized her limbs were abnormal. >> reporter: after her birth in february veterinarians at the san diego zoo safari park discovered the little giraffe suffered fro a range of ailments, including hyperextended joints >> the biggest concern was her right fore limb so the yoint th that's equivalent to her wrist wa bending in an abnormal direction. >> what would happen to her if she was in the wild >> this probably would have been a life or death. >> reporter: in came the hangar clinic, a group of specialists who build orthotics for humans. >> this is the first animal i've ever worked with. it was pretty surreal. >> reporter: they performed two procedures to fabricate a mold of msituni's legs, the basis for a custom, stainless steel leg brace. all that engineering plus flair with the giraffe pattern.
>> yes, correct. >> reporter: and now just ten days after wearing the custom brace for the first time, msituni is adjusting to roaming free >> she's thinking about it come on, darling >> reporter: she's back with her herd healed and, as you can see, hungry. >> it's absolutely inspiring. now to see her back with adult giraffes living in a herd, it makes you almost emotional. >> it was just the most gratifying thing i've ever done in my life. >> reporter: the baby giraffe who struggled with every step has now hit her stride maggie vespa, nbc news, san diego. >> love a success story. that's "nightly news" for this tuesday thank you for watching i'm lester holt. please take care of yourself and each other. good night
coming up next, brace yourself. a new record high for gas prices. more than six dollars per gallon statewide. why you shouldn't expect cheaper prices anytime soon. and restaurants are struggling with rising costs, covid outbreaks and staffing shortages. we will be joined by a bay area scientists that looks at other signs of life in our universe. why he believes the silicon valley will play a critical role . taking over the streets of the peninsula.