It’s Friday, October 16th - and NBC 6 has the top stories for the day.
No. 1 - President Donald Trump was evasive Thursday night when pressed if he took a COVID-19 test before his first debate with Democrat Joe Biden during a town hall in Miami that was hosted by NBC News.
Biden, appearing nearly 1,200 miles away at a dueling town hall from ABC News, denounced the White House's handling of the virus that has claimed more than 215,000 American lives, declaring that it was at fault for closing a pandemic response office established by the Obama administration. Trump, meanwhile, was defensive and insisted that the nation was turning the corner on the virus, even as his own battle with the disease took center stage.
No. 2 - A boat explosion in Fort Lauderdale caused multiple injuries and sent at least five people to the hospital Thursday afternoon, authorities confirmed.
The explosion happened just before 2 p.m. on the New River in the 2000 block of Southwest 20th Street. Sources told NBC 6 the boat was being used for a music video shoot.
Fort Lauderdale Fire Rescue officials said about 21 people were on the 41-foot Wellcraft boat. A fire led to multiple explosions, and several people were thrown into the water and some people jumped in, sources said.
The boat's captain fled and was questioned, sources said.
No. 3 - More than 17 million Americans have already cast ballots in the 2020 election, a record-shattering avalanche of early votes driven both by Democratic enthusiasm and a pandemic that has transformed the way the nation votes.
"It's crazy,” said Michael McDonald, a University of Florida political scientist who has long tracked voting for his site ElectProject.org. McDonald's analysis shows roughly 10 times as many people have voted compared with this point in 2016.
In Florida, half of all ballots sent through the mail so far have been from Democrats and less than a third of them from Republicans.
No. 4 - Broward Sheriff Gregory Tony has fired a Department of Detention colonel and lieutenant colonel after an inmate gave birth in jail last month.
Tony announced the terminations of Colonel Gary Palmer and Lieutenant Colonel Angela Neely Thursday for "command level failures," the department said in a news release.
The firings follow an administrative review of a late September incident in which a female inmate in the infirmary at the North Broward bureau gave birth to a child.
No. 5 - Police have arrested a suspect who they say fatally stabbed a 93-year-old man inside his Miami home.
Silverio Fonte, 56, is facing a second-degree murder charge in the killing of Humberto Mijares, Miami Police said Thursday.
Police said Mijares' daughter found his body inside his home in the 2300 block of Southwest 22nd Terrace when she went to check on him Wednesday morning.
No. 6 - Weatherwise, lots of humidity will increase rain chances for the afternoon. Keep your NBC 6 app handy for push alerts on any severe weather as well as First Alert Doppler 6000.