Lara Spencer reports the buzziest stories of the day in “GMA” Pop News.
Lara Spencer reports the buzziest stories of the day in “GMA” Pop News.
The arrest of a man accused of financially preying on women he meets through dating apps followed weeks of warnings from Wisconsin police to be on the lookout for the alleged perpetrator. It also came as the man -- 52-year-old Timothy Olson -- was being sought for questioning in the recent death of a woman he was with at a South Milwaukee bar when she fell unconscious, dying days later, according to police. Olson was arrested in Franklin, Wisconsin, on Tuesday after allegedly committing three burglaries in the city, including one involving a 79-year-old woman who rebuffed him in a bar.
A judge declared a mistrial Wednesday in the Danny Masterson rape case after the jury was unable to reach a verdict. The three alleged victims were members of the Church of Scientology, as was Masterson. All three women said they were initially hesitant to speak to law enforcement because they said church teachings discouraged reporting to police.
New York City Mayor Eric Adams has directed the NYPD and peace officers to take individuals who appear "to be mentally ill" into custody involuntarily for psychiatric evaluations, even if they are not considered to be an imminent threat to the public. "They cycle in and out of hospitals and jails, but New Yorkers rightly expect our city to help them and help them we will." The directive has stoked outrage, controversy and debate about homelessness and mental illness, and how to tackle both issues.
Sam Bankman-Fried, the embattled former CEO of cryptocurrency giant FTX and trading firm Alameda Research, told ABC News he was ultimately responsible for the downfall of both companies, but denied that he knew "that there was any improper use of customer funds." Bankman-Fried spoke to George Stephanopoulos and ABC News for his first network interview since both companies in his cryptocurrency empire filed for bankruptcy this month. The interview took place in the Bahamas island of Nassau where FTX was headquartered.
Attorney General Merrick Garland took something of a victory lap on Wednesday, a day after the Department of Justice secured convictions in one of the Jan. 6 investigation's highest profile prosecutions. Stewart Rhodes, a Yale Law School graduate-turned-militiaman, was found guilty Tuesday of his most serious charge, seditious conspiracy, following a sprawling two-month trial in federal court in Washington and three days of jury deliberations. An associate, Kelly Meggs, was also found guilty of seditious conspiracy in the first such convictions by a jury since 1995.
A grieving family is pleading with parents to monitor their children's online activity after a former Virginia police officer "catfished" a 15-year-old girl online and then traveled to her Riverside, California, home, where he allegedly killed her mother and grandparents. "Nobody could imagine this crime happening ... especially it just being one day after Thanksgiving," Mychelle Blandin, the sister and daughter of the three victims, said at a news conference Wednesday.
The House Ways and Means Committee has received access to former President Donald Trump's tax returns after the Supreme Court last week rejected his final objection on the issue. "Treasury has complied with last week's court decision," said a spokesperson for the department that includes the Internal Revenue Service in possession of Trump's confidential tax returns, which he has long resisted disclosing, unlike past presidents. The chairman of the House committee, Richard Neal, declined to comment earlier Wednesday when asked if the panel had officially received the documents.
Hundreds of thousands of rail workers stand on the brink of a strike that would snarl the nation's supply chain, driving up prices for households already under strain and eventually leaving some store shelves bare, supply chain analysts and industry groups told ABC News. "Let me be clear: a rail shutdown would devastate our economy," President Joe Biden said on Monday. "Without freight rail, many U.S. industries would shut down."
While arriving in Boston during her first U.S. tour in nearly a decade alongside Prince William, Princess Kate paid tribute to the late Princess Diana. Princess Kate was seen wearing a nearly matching suited look, and she matched her sophisticated look with a turtleneck and Princess Diana's sapphire and diamond drop earrings. The earrings were spotted on Princess Diana on several occasions, including the 1996 Met Gala where she wore them with a matching choker that included rows of pearls and a big blue sapphire at the center.
The House on Wednesday voted to block a strike by the nation's railway workers, intervening in a labor dispute with wide-ranging economic and political implications. The House voted 290-137 to adopt the tentative deal between the rail companies and employees reached in September and brokered by the White House. In a second, separate 221-207 vote -- aimed at addressing progressive Democrats' concerns over protecting workers -- the House added seven days of paid sick leave to the agreement, which currently calls for only one.
The lava flowing out of Mauna Loa, the world's largest active volcano located on Hawaii's Big Island, is inching closer to a main highway, according to officials. The lava is flowing out of Fissure 3 in the northeast rift zone and is now just 3.6 miles from Saddle Road, a main highway that runs east to west through the center of the island and a route often used to travel between Kona and Hilo, the U.S. Geological Survey tweeted just before 10 a.m. local time. Volcanic gas plumes are lofting high and vertically into the atmosphere, according to the Hawaii County Civil Defense.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced Wednesday it will expand wastewater testing for polio to select communities across the U.S. after a person tested positive for the disease in New York this summer. The initiative will start in two communities: Oakland County, Michigan, and a yet-to-be named county in the Philadelphia area. Wastewater testing will extend to counties with low rates of polio vaccination or to counties connected to communities in New York where polio has been detected in wastewater, according to the CDC, including Rockland County, where a single case of vaccine-derived polio was detected.
Jordana Brewster marked the ninth anniversary of her "Fast & Furious" co-star Paul Walker's tragic death by sharing a few never-before-seen photos of him. The actress shared the pics, which she said were taken by an on-set photographer between takes and sent to her a few days after Walker's passing, in a heartfelt Instagram post on Wednesday. "I love them because they capture Paul's playfulness, openness, joy," she wrote.
House Democrats on Wednesday elected a historic new generation of leaders. Rep. Hakeem Jeffries of New York will succeed Nancy Pelosi as leader of the Democratic Caucus. The 52-year-old Jeffries will be the first Black lawmaker to lead a party in Congress.
A court has granted animal protection groups' request for an emergency court challenge to stop a black bear hunt from taking place next Monday in New Jersey. The state's Fish and Game Council authorized the hunt earlier this month. The Fish and Game Council approved emergency regulations on Nov. 15 to "control the black bear population and reduce the threat of dangerous encounters between bears and humans through regulated hunting and non-lethal management measures," according to the council's website.
Fleetwood Mac member Christine McVie has died at the age of 79, the band announced Wednesday. "There are no words to describe our sadness at the passing of Christine McVie," the band shared in a statement posted to their social media accounts. A statement on behalf of McVie's family was issued to the late musician's social media accounts as well, noting that McVie "passed away peacefully" in the hospital on Nov. 30 "following a short illness" while "in the company of her family."
Danielle Boyer knew she was interested in robotics from a young age. Now, as the founder of the nonprofit The STEAM Connection, Boyer, 22, is on a mission to promote technical and cultural educational opportunities among Native American youth like herself -- sometimes combining both in the form of robots that teach Indigenous languages, as they face risks of dying out. "I believe in equipping students with 21st century skills to be able to create solutions for our communities," said Boyer, who has since dropped out of college to run the nonprofit full-time.
A manhunt is underway for a suspect accused of stabbing and bludgeoning an elderly couple to death in their Massachusetts home in an apparent targeted attack, officials said. Police conducting a welfare check on the married couple Tuesday night found both dead with "obvious signs of trauma," according to Plymouth County District Attorney Timothy Cruz. The victims were identified as the homeowners -- Carl Mattson and his wife, Vicki Mattson, both 70.
Jennifer Lopez has starred in so many memorable films throughout her career but there's one in particular she hopes will get a sequel. "Gigli," a romantic comedy crime film directed by Martin Brest, was a failure both critically and commercially. It won worst picture at the Golden Raspberry Awards as well as worst actor and worst actress for Affleck and Lopez, respectively.
The Luzerne County Board of Elections in Pennsylvania met on Wednesday and voted to certify the county's results from the 2022 midterm election -- two days after an unusual delay caused by two Republicans and one Democrat on the board. The Democratic member who initially abstained from Monday's vote, Daniel Schramm, voted to certify on Wednesday. According to ABC affiliate WNEP, two Republican members of the board voted at a Monday meeting against certifying the results while two Democrats voted to certify and Schramm abstained, leading to the delay.