Alleged Manti Te'o hoaxer Ronaiah Tuiasosopo may speak out - | WBTV Charlotte

Alleged Manti Te'o hoaxer may speak out

LANCASTER, Calif. (AP) -

The person cast as the mastermind of the hoax involving Notre Dame's Manti Te'o may tell his side of the story, a family member said Sunday.

Peter Navy Tuiasosopo, uncle of Ronaiah Tuiasosopo, says the family plans to hold a meeting this week to determine when and how his nephew would talk about the bizarre prank.

"We want to do it right," he said, also noting that the family has hired an attorney. He never directly mentioned the hoax or his nephew being involved.

Te'o insisted he had no role in the hoax involving his "dead" girlfriend and told ESPN on Friday night that he was duped by a person who has since apologized to him.

In an off-camera interview, Te'o identified that person as Ronaiah Tuiasosopo, a 22-year-old acquaintance who lives in California. He said the young man contacted him soon after Deadpsin.com broke the news on Wednesday. The Deadspin story indicated Ronaiah Tuiasosopo was involved, and suggested Te'o was, too.

"We're just a family of faith. The family is holding up well," Peter Navy Tuiasosopo said. "They're holding up the way I would expect a family to. This is a storm."

He made the comments after attending a two-hour service at the Oasis Christian Church, where his brother, who is Ronaiah's father, is pastor.

Titus Tuiasosopo, the father, choked up as he thanked people for their prayers.

"I've been practicing how to say `no comment' in 20 languages," the pastor told his congregation. The family has not commented publicly since news of the hoax broke.

Ronaiah Tuiasosopo wasn't seen in attendance, and two church members said he was not there.

Earlier in the day, ABC news announced that Te'o would do his first television interview with Katie Couric. The interview will air Thursday on Couric's daytime talk show and Te'o's parents will be with him. ABC was not releasing details of when the interview would take place or where.

Also, in a story published in Sunday's South Bend Tribune, a Notre Dame spokesman said the university decided against disclosing the hoax before the Irish played Alabama in the BCS championship game on Jan. 7 because it wasn't in the best interest of the teams.

University spokesman Dennis Brown said some school administrators thought they should release what they knew about the hoax when they became aware of it. Te'o went to coaches and school officials with his story on Dec. 26. The school commissioned an investigation that it says confirmed Te'o was not involved. Investigators gave their findings to the school on Jan. 4.

The university officials said the investigators did not examine cellphone records, emails or other electronic communication to determine the length or extent of Te'o's communication over the past few years with the person claiming to be Lennay Kekua, nor did the university ask Te'o to take a lie detector test.

The school informed Te'o's parents about the investigation results on Jan. 5.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.

  • Local NewsMore>>

  • Crash shuts down part of John Belk Freeway

    Crash shuts down part of John Belk Freeway

    Monday, April 24 2017 7:10 AM EDT2017-04-24 11:10:05 GMT
    (Credit: CharMeck)(Credit: CharMeck)
    A wreck shut down part of John Belk Freeway near uptown Charlotte Monday morning.  Charlotte-Mecklenburg police say the wreck happened just before 7 a.m., closing all lanes of John Belk at Kenilworth Avenue.  There's no word on injuries or what may have caused the crash. Copyright 2017 WBTV. All rights reserved.  More >>
    A wreck shut down part of John Belk Freeway near uptown Charlotte Monday morning.  Charlotte-Mecklenburg police say the wreck happened just before 7 a.m., closing all lanes of John Belk at Kenilworth Avenue.  There's no word on injuries or what may have caused the crash. Copyright 2017 WBTV. All rights reserved.  More >>
  • Flood warning in place for Rowan County

    Flood warning in place for Rowan County

    Monday, April 24 2017 7:09 AM EDT2017-04-24 11:09:34 GMT
    David Whisenant-WBTVDavid Whisenant-WBTV

    Parts of Rowan County are now under a Flood Warning. The National Weather Service has issued a Flood Warning for Urban Areas and Small Streams in Southwestern Rowan County in the Piedmont of North Carolina until 6:30 pm on Monday.

    More >>

    Parts of Rowan County are now under a Flood Warning. The National Weather Service has issued a Flood Warning for Urban Areas and Small Streams in Southwestern Rowan County in the Piedmont of North Carolina until 6:30 pm on Monday.

    More >>
  • More than 60,000 without power in Mecklenburg County

    More than 60,000 without power in Mecklenburg County

    Monday, April 24 2017 6:59 AM EDT2017-04-24 10:59:07 GMT
    Tree down on Marvin Road (Micah Smith | WBTV)Tree down on Marvin Road (Micah Smith | WBTV)

    A huge tree took down power lines on Marvin Road in the Ballantyne area, leaving more than 1,000 homes without power.

    More >>

    A huge tree took down power lines on Marvin Road in the Ballantyne area, leaving more than 1,000 homes without power.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly