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Wednesday
May232018

Video of police tasing Milwaukee Bucks rookie Sterling Brown could be released today

Ron Elkman/Sports Imagery/Getty Images(MILWAUKEE) -- Milwaukee police are expected to release video Wednesday that shows officers tasering Milwaukee Bucks rookie Sterling Brown in an incident stemming from a parking violation, according to the basketball player's attorney.

Brown's attorney, Mark Thomsen of Gingras, Cates and Wachs, told ABC News he expects the police body camera video to be released Wednesday afternoon.

Several sources who have seen the video told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that it does not show Brown do anything to provoke police during the January encounter, which is contrary to how the police report describes the incident.

According to the police report, the incident began around 2 a.m. on Jan. 26 when officers saw a vehicle parked across two handicap spaces at a Milwaukee Walgreens drugstore. According to the report, officers approached the vehicle and were informed by an unidentified passenger that the driver - later identified as Brown - was inside the store. When Brown came out of the store, the police report says, officers repeatedly asked him to step back which he refused. The report says Brown became "very aggressive" and "physically resisted" the officers' attempts to handcuff him.

"A taser had to be employed to get Brown in control with handcuffs," the police report states.

Brown was arrested on possible misdemeanor charge of resisting or obstructing an officer, but after police reviewed the incident - including the body am footage slated to be released - they failed to refer the case to prosecutors for charges. Ultimately, the NBA player was cited for a parking violation.

Brown played in a game later that day with bruises on his face, but would say only that it was a "personal issue" when asked by reporters how he had been injured.

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports police have reportedly prepared community leaders for possible backlash from the video's release, including showing it to Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett who called the video "disturbing."

Just a day before the video's expected release, Milwaukee Police Chief Alfonso Morales released a video, promising to defend officers, but also admit when they make mistakes.

"If there is ever an incident when one of our members makes a mistake," Morales said in the video, "I"m going to be honest and transparent about it."

Morales took over as police chief in February, weeks after Brown's arrest.

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Wednesday
May232018

Former Mets, Phillies star Lenny Dykstra arrested after allegedly threatening to kill Uber driver

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Former Mets and Phillies star Lenny Dykstra was arrested in New Jersey on Wednesday after a dispute with an Uber driver, Linden police said.

Dykstra, 55, who lives in Linden, was charged with making terroristic threats and drug offenses after he was allegedly found with cocaine, MDMA, commonly known as ecstasy, and marijuana.

After the Uber driver had picked him up in Linden, Dykstra wanted to change the destination, police said. When the driver refused, Dykstra put a weapon to his head and threatened to kill him, police said.

No weapon was found but police allegedly found illegal drugs after the driver drove to the police station and honked his horn until officers came outside.

Dykstra was released on a summons and is due back in court next month.

ABC News has been unable to reach Dykstra, but he told the Daily News in New York that the Uber driver took him hostage during the early-morning ride.

"The guy went nuclear on me," Dykstra said. "He … kidnapped me and almost killed me going 100 mph. He locked me in his … car, and he wouldn't let me out."

Dykstra also told the newspaper he had not been arrested. "No dude," he said. "It's another day in the life of Lenny Dykstra."

He has been in legal trouble before. He was sentenced to three years in prison for grand theft auto and filing false financial claims. He served six and a half months.

Dykstra was a World Series champion with the 1986 Mets. He also reached the World Series with the Philadelphia Phillies in 1993.

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Wednesday
May232018

NFL mandates that players on the field stand for national anthem

Drew Angerer/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell announced Wednesday that the football league's players who are on the field will need to stand for the national anthem -- capping months of controversy and coming in the wake of a series of player protests.

"The policy adopted today was approved in concert with the NFL's ongoing commitment to local communities and our country — one that is extraordinary in its scope, resources, and alignment with our players," Goodell said in a statement. "We are dedicated to continuing our collaboration with players to advance the goals of justice and fairness in all corners of our society."

Goodell said "it was unfortunate" that on-field protests by players taking a knee during the national anthem "created a false perception among many that thousands of NFL players were unpatriotic. This is not and was never the case."

This is a breaking story. Please check back in for updates.



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Wednesday
May232018

Congress looking into alleged sexual abuse in USA Swimming and other Olympic sports

iStock?Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- Congress is looking into more alleged sexual assault of Olympic athletes beyond gymnastics – this time involving USA Swimming and other sports.

The president and CEO of USA Swimming, Tim Hinchey, is testifying Wednesday before a House Energy and Commerce subcommittee looking into whether U.S. Olympic organizations have policies and procedures in place to protect athletes given all the recent accusations.

In his prepared testimony, Hinchey admits his sport has been a big part of the problem since even before the gymnastics scandal.

“USA Swimming acknowledges and deeply regrets the abuse suffered by children, athletes, and other participants in swimming programs. Participation in sport should offer physical, social and emotional benefits, but for some, it has resulted in abuse and trauma that will negatively impact the rest of their lives,” Hinchey says in his prepared remarks.

While conceding that “child sexual abuse still occurs in swimming,” Hinchey says “there will be no complacency on [his] watch.”

On Monday, Olympic swimmer Ariana Kukors Smith sued USA Swimming, claiming that the organization knew that her former coach – Sean Hutchison – was sexually abusing her and attempted to mask the scandal.

After Kukors Smith made the accusations public in February, Hutchison released a statement.

“At no time did I ever abuse Ariana Kukors or do anything with her that was not consensual,” he said. Hutchison has not been charged with any crimes at this time. Hutchison’s lawyer, Brad Meryhew, explained to The New York Times that he and his client had no response to the lawsuit following its filing on Monday. ABC News has reached out to Meryhew and is awaiting further comment.

The one-time world champion alleged that Hutchinson began assaulting her about one decade ago when she was 16 years old. Hutchinson supposedly groomed the athlete for a sexual relationship when she was just 13.

While Kukors Smith will not testify at Wednesday's hearing, she did appear on ABC News’ Good Morning America on Tuesday.

In that interview, the 2012 USA Olympic Team member claimed that USA Swimming, the chief governing body of the sport, failed to protect her from sexual abuse by Hutchison.

“He stole many things from me, including my swimming career, my college experience, friendships, my virginity and ultimately my Olympic dream,” she said. “Not all athletes will become Olympians but all athletes deserve to feel safe on a pool deck.”

Shortly after Kukors Smith’s civil lawsuit was filed in Orange County Superior Court in California, USA Swimming released a statement.

“We respect Ariana Kukors' bravery in stepping forward and sharing her story," the statement said. "We have been in regular contact with her legal team over the last several months and will continue to work with them and Ariana through this process."

Kukors Smith contends that Mark Schubert, USA Swimming and longtime Olympic Coach, was aware of the abuse but failed to act.

Hinchey assumed his position with the sports organization in July 2017, just months before Kukors Smith went public with the alleged abuse.

This case is not an isolated incident for USA Swimming or other Olympic sports. And the swimming scandal comes after dozens of victims testified they were sexually abused by Larry Nassar while he was a doctor for both the USA Olympic and Michigan State Gymnastics teams.

Nassar was found guilty and received what amounted to a life sentence.

Acting CEO of the United States Olympic Committee Susanne Lyons and President & CEO of USA Gymnastics Kerry Perry are also scheduled to testify at Wednesday’s hearing.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Wednesday
May232018

Scoreboard roundup -- 5/22/18

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Here are the scores from yesterday's sports events:
    
INTERLEAGUE
 Final  Cleveland    10  Chi Cubs        1
 Final  Houston      11  San Francisco   2
 Final  Kansas City   5  St. Louis       1

AMERICAN LEAGUE
 Final  Toronto         5  L-A Angels    3
 Final  Boston          4  Tampa Bay     2
 Final  Texas           6  N-Y Yankees   4
 Final  Minnesota       6  Detroit       0
 Final  Chi White Sox   3  Baltimore     2
 Final  Seattle         3  Oakland       2, 10 Innings

NATIONAL LEAGUE
 Final  Washington    2  San Diego      1
 Final  Atlanta       3  Philadelphia   1
 Final  Miami         5  N-Y Mets       1
 Final  Cincinnati    7  Pittsburgh     2
 Final  Milwaukee     1  Arizona        0
 Final  L-A Dodgers   5  Colorado       3
    
NATIONAL BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION PLAYOFFS
 Final  Houston   95  Golden State   92

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Wednesday
May232018

Danica Patrick will be the 1st-ever female ESPYs host

Ben Gabbe/Getty Images(NEW YORK CITY) -- Racecar driver Danica Patrick will be the first-ever female host of the ESPYs.

Patrick told Good Morning America earlier in the day that she was flattered to be asked.

Past hosts have included former NFL quarterback Peyton Manning, Justin Timberlake and Samuel L. Jackson.

"This is such a huge honor. At the end of the day, I love a challenge and I love sports, [and] those are two things that come together to host the ESPYs," Patrick said. "It’s our only show! So, I love it, I love meeting all the different people and hearing all the stories. I truly leave the ESPYs every year and think to myself, ‘I am so inspired, I feel like I suck.’ Because everybody has such a great story. I want to be one of those stories!”

The ESPYs are an annual event meant to recognize athletic achievements and other sports-related moments from the previous year. This year's show will take place on July 18 and will be broadcast on ABC. Patrick told "Good Morning America" that she has her fingers crossed that she'll be able to make her fellow athletes laugh during the show.

"Hopefully somebody can help me write a good joke!" she said. "[But] at the end of the day, it's about honoring those who have had an amazing year."

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Tuesday
May222018

Serena Williams not seeded in French Open after taking break for maternity leave 

Scott Clarke / ESPN Images(NEW YORK) -- Serena Williams will not be given a seeding at this year's French Open, her first major tournament since taking maternity leave.

The 36-year-old gave birth to her daughter, Alexis Olympia Ohanian Jr., in September 2017.

She was ranked number one when she took leave from the Women's Tennis Association (WTA) tour last year, and had dropped to rank 453 during her absence.

Without a seeding, the 23-time Grand Slam winner could face highly-ranked opponents in the early round of a tournament she has won three times.

“This year, again, tournament officials will establish the list and ranking of the women’s seeds based on the WTA ranking,” the French Tennis Federation said in a statement to ABC News. “Consequently, the seeds will reflect this week’s world ranking.”

A spokesperson for the French Tennis Federation would not comment on the criticism they have received following the announcement.

In Paris, Williams will compete at her first Grand Slam since winning the 2017 Australian Open while pregnant with Alexis, her daughter with husband Alexis Ohanian.

The American champion returned to the WTA tour in March this year, and compiled two wins and two losses.

Williams spoke to "GMA" anchor Robin Roberts last month about the health hardships she's endured after sustaining a pulmonary embolism the day after her emergency cesarean section.

"Then everything was fine for the first, like, you know, eight to 12 hours," she said. "Then it was after that things started going crazy."

Williams said at the time she was still in the process of fully recovering from the medical ordeal, adding that "it hasn't been easy for me."

Williams' coach said in an interview published May 14, before the seedings were announced, that Williams, who recently attended Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's wedding, has been training very hard.

“She is improving in all the areas fast. I am very satisfied and confident that she will be ready for Roland Garros," Patrick Mouratoglou said in an interview for the WTA's website.

"Serena will play the French Open to win it," he said. "Can she do it? Serena can achieve anything -- after being her coach for six years, I'm even more sure of that statement."

The French Open draw will be made on Thursday. The tournament starts next Sunday.

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Tuesday
May222018

Houston Texans' star JJ Watt visits Santa Fe shooting survivors, hospital staff

Kathy Garza(SANTA FE, Texas) -- J.J. Watt, star defense end for the Houston Texans, brought cheer on Monday to survivors of the Santa Fe High School massacre.

Watt was seen posing for photos and signing a shirt at Clear Lake Regional Medical Center, where some of the 13 injured are being treated.

One survivor had a "huge smile on her face" after Watt's visit.

Watt has also offered to cover the costs of funerals for all 10 students and staff members killed in the Friday morning shooting.

"Absolutely horrific," the NFL star tweeted hours after the massacre.

This isn't the first time Watt has given back to his community.

Watt led efforts to raise more than $37 million for victims of Hurricane Harvey, which devastated Houston last year.

Watt told "Good Morning America" last year he decided to try and find a way to help Houston as he watched his city become inundated with deadly floodwater from his hotel in Dallas.

"You can't get back home, you can't physically help out in any way," Watt said. "I'm watching it on TV and seeing all these people help out, seeing people get in boats and help, seeing water rush down streets that I drive down every day ... I said, 'How can I help?'"



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Tuesday
May222018

Watershed moment for women sailors in grueling, 45,000 mile Volvo Ocean Race

Joseph Prezioso/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Spanning some 45,000 nautical miles around the world and crossing four oceans, the Volvo Ocean Race -- formerly known as the Whitbread Round-the-World Race -- is a challenging and grueling sporting marathon that takes place every three years.

Six continents are visited in 11 legs over a nine-month span that began last October.

For the first time in its history, the competition is making a big effort to have more women sailors participate. A new rule means that every boat in this year's race must have at least one female racing on board. The teams are allowed more crew members to compensate. That more inclusive spirit started with the 2014 to 2015 race in which the all-women’s Team SCA won one leg of the race.

The rule change means this competition has 20 women sailors, according to the U.S. media manager Robert Penner. This year’s race, which began in Alicante, Spain, brought the race teams to Newport, Rhode Island, from May 9 to May 20. Their next leg is a trans-Atlantic one to Cardiff. The boats will finish in The Hague, Netherlands, in June.

Among the women in this year’s race is Britain’s Dee Caffari, who is making her debut as a Volvo Ocean Race skipper. Caffari is leading a crew of five women and five men on Turn the Tide on Plastic. The Briton is already a role model in the sport, being the only female to have sailed solo around the world in both directions. She is also the only woman to have sailed around the world three times non-stop. She was a crew member on Team SCA for the last Volvo Ocean Race.

Not every male sailor has taken the rule change well. Dutch skipper of Team Brunel, Bouwe Bekking, told the BBC, “It’s better to be able to choose your own team. The rules have been rewritten in such a way that you are more or less forced to take two women.” Still, Bekking named Briton Abby Ehler as “boat captain.” Ehler is competing in her third Volvo Ocean Race.

With seven identically built 65-foot yachts in competition, who wins comes down to the skill of the crews as they face the challenges of the weather and the world's oceans.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Tuesday
May222018

Scoreboard roundup -- 5/21/18

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Here are the scores from yesterday's sports events:
    
INTERLEAGUE
 Final  St. Louis   6  Kansas City   0
    
AMERICAN LEAGUE
 Final  N-Y Yankees  10  Texas           5
 Final  Minnesota     4  Detroit         2
 Final  Baltimore     3  Chi White Sox   2
    
NATIONAL LEAGUE
 Final  Washington    10  San Diego     2
 Final  Philadelphia   3  Atlanta       0
 Final  N-Y Mets       2  Miami         0
 Final  Milwaukee      4  Arizona       2
 Final  Colorado       2  L-A Dodgers   1

NATIONAL BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION PLAYOFFS
 Final  Cleveland  111  Boston  102
    
NATIONAL HOCKEY LEAGUE PLAYOFFS
 Final  Washington   3  Tampa Bay   0

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