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Ronaiah Tuiasosopo fell in love with Manti Te'o and said all his energy went into pretending to be the woman the Notre Dame linebacker came to know as Lennay Kekua.
The 22-year-old Tuiasosopo said he built the online persona of Lennay Kekua, a nonexistent woman who Te'o said he fell for without ever meeting in person and later believed to have died of leukemia.
Dr. Phil McGraw says Ronaiah Tuiasosopo, who masterminded the dead girlfriend hoax involving Manti Te'o, told him the Notre Dame linebacker was not involved in the scheme and that he ended up falling "deeply, romantically" in love with the football player.
Dr. Phil McGraw has booked the first on-camera interview with the man who allegedly concocted the girlfriend hoax that ensnared Notre Dame football star Manti Te'o.
The person Manti Te'o says was pretending to be his online girlfriend told the Notre Dame linebacker "I love you" in voicemails that were played during his interview with Katie Couric.
Manti Te'o told Katie Couric the feelings he had for what turned out to be a fake, online girlfriend were real and reiterated he had nothing to do with the hoax.
Scandalized Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o says yes, he did lie about his supposed girlfriend, Lennay Kekua — but that he only did what anybody in his position would do.
Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o admitted to Katie Couric he answered questions about his "dead," online girlfriend even after he received a call Dec. 6 from a woman posing as the fake person.
Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o has told Katie Couric that he briefly lied about his online girlfriend after discovering she didn't exist, while maintaining that he had no part in creating the hoax.
When Notre Dame football star Manti Te'o ordered two dozen white roses delivered to 21503 Water Street, he says he thought they were headed to the home of his dead girlfriend, Lennay Kekua. In fact, the man implicated as the ringleader of a false-identity hoax and many of his relatives have lived in the single-story, stucco bungalow, according to publicly available records and interviews with neighbors.
Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o insisted he had no role in the bizarre hoax involving his "dead" girlfriend and told ESPN on Friday night that he was duped by a person who has since apologized to him.
Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o tried to clear the air late Friday about how he fell into an online relationship with a fictitious woman he met online who called herself Lennay Kekua. His grief at her "death" became a major story during the college football season. The problem was Kekua was a hoax _ there was no such person.
Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o tried to clear the air about how he fell into an online relationship with a fictitious woman he met online who called herself Lennay Kekua. His grief at her "death" became a major story during the college football season. The problem was Kekua was a hoax _ there was no such person.
Not long before Notre Dame played Michigan State last fall, word spread that Fighting Irish linebacker Manti Te'o had lost his grandmother and girlfriend within hours of each other.
All-American linebacker Manti Te'o talked to, and about, someone posing as Lennay Kekua online and on the phone in late 2011 and 2012. After media were told Kekua died of leukemia last September, Te'o talked about her with reporters numerous times. This is a chronology of how the fake girlfriend story grew, based primarily on Te'o's comments in social media and interviews.
He told his parents about what had happened while home for Christmas break and called Notre Dame coaches on Dec. 26 to let them know.
He acknowledged that the hoax was cruel, but said it was never intended as a joke and that he got no financial gain from it.