7 things to know now: Charlie Sheen investigated; iPhone hack; 'American Idol' finale

Here's a roundup of news trending across the nation and world today.

What to know now:

1. Sheen  investigated: Los Angeles Police confirmed Wednesday that Charlie Sheen is the subject of a felony threat investigation which was  triggered by an audiotape in which the actor confesses to lying about his HIV status and threatening to kill his ex-fiancée. Officials have served subpoenas to both  RadarOnline and the National Enquirer which both published the tape. In it Sheen is alleged to have threatened  Scottine Ross, a former star of  pornographic films who was engaged to Sheen.

2. iPhone hack: FBI director James Comey said Wednesday that the government “purchased” the tool it used to bypass the password security system of the phone belonging to Syed Farook, the man who shot and killed more than a dozen co-workers in San Bernardino, Calif., in December. Before, the only thing Comey had said about breaking into the locked phone was that a third party had shown the FBI a method that allowed them unlimited tries at the password. The phone is designed to allow only 10 tries at the password before information on the phone is erased.

3.  Haggard dies: Merle Haggard, the “Okie from Muskogee” whose often hard life war reflected in his music, died Wednesday on his 79th birthday. His son, Ben Haggard, told fans on Facebook that his father had told him a week ago that, “he was gonna pass on his birthday, and he wasn't wrong.”

>> Read more trending stories  

4. Body found: Police continue to search for the person who killed a young woman in Austin and left her  body  on the campus of the University of Texas. The woman, who was not identified, was found  dead near the school’s Alumni Center around 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday.  "This is a difficult time for our community," UT Austin President Gregory L. Fenvessaid said in a letter to students on Wednesday. "There is a lot of justified anxiety, and I want to let you know that law enforcement is working hard to investigate this week's homicide while campus leadership is actively addressing safety at UT Austin."

>>UPDATE: The young woman who was found on UT's campus has been identified 

5. Kesha suit: Pop singer Kesha’s sexual assault lawsuit against her music producer was dealt a blow Wednesday when a judge in New York ruled the case couldn’t go forward because the alleged abuse did not happen in New York. The singer claimed that Lukasz Gottwald, known as “Dr. Luke,” drugged and sexually assaulted her over a period of time. The judge also ruled that the statute of limitations in the case had expired. Gottwald was never charged with a crime. 

And one more

“American Idol” is saying goodbye Thursday after 15 seasons on the air. Some of the show’s  most famous stars will be back to send off one of the most popular talent shows in television history. Oscar winner Jennifer Hudson, who was a contestant but not a winner on the show, along with Kelly Clarkson Carrie Underwood, Chris Daughtry and Clay Aiken are expected to be part of “Idol’s” finale.

In case you missed it

Check out 80-year-old Gary Player’s shot in this Par 3 contest at  the Masters Tournament.  The tourney is set to tee-off Thursday. 

Thank you for reading the Springfield News-Sun and for supporting local journalism. Subscribers: log in for access to your daily ePaper and premium newsletters.

Thank you for supporting in-depth local journalism with your subscription to the Springfield News-Sun. Get more news when you want it with email newsletters just for subscribers. Sign up here.