Teo to Couric: "I didn't lie." - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Teo to Couric: "I didn't lie."

Katie Kouric Katie Kouric
Manti Te'o Manti Te'o
Kouric and Te'o family Kouric and Te'o family

During an hour-long taped interview. Manti Teo admitted to ABC's Katie Couric that he kept up the illusion of his dead girlfriend even after he learned Lennay Kekua was a fake person.

"Can you see why people would view this at worst as a complete lie, and at best as incredibly misleading?" Couric asked.

"I can see that. For people feeling that they're misled, that I'm sorry for. But I wasn't as forthcoming about it. But I didn't lie," Teo said.

Couric asked Teo if he is gay.

"No. Far, far from it," he laughed.

Couric played three voice-mails left on Teo's telephone from someone claiming to be Kekua.

"Just letting you know I'm here. I'm getting ready for my first session. I want to keep you posted. Miss you. Love you. Bye," the caller said.

"Doesn't that sound like a girl?" Teo asked Couric.

"It does," she said.

"It didn't sound like a man. It sounded like a woman. If he somehow made up that voice, its incredible," Teo said.

On Thursday, the lawyer for the man seen as the mastermind behind the elaborate hoax said his client, Ronaiah Tuiasosopo, faked a female voice when talking to Manti.

During the interview, Teo's parents became emotional when they spoke about the controversy surrounding their son.

"It just hurts to see his picture and name being displayed as someone who's dishonest," Ottilia Teo said.

"The story of this, as bizarre as it may seem, was reality for us," Brian Teo said. "I'm proud of this kid. I really am. He's not a liar. He's a kid."

Teo told Couric he wasn't party to the deception, and as the hoax came to light he felt overwhelmed by the "circus of events" and what it was doing to his family.

"The greatest joy in any child's life is to make their parents proud. The greatest pain is to know that they're experiencing pain because of you," he said.

Copyright 2012 Hawaii News Now. All rights reserved

 

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