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Ex-cop Daniel Holtzclaw found guilty of rape, Serial is back & more

Ashley Austrew is a freelance writer who loves tacos, Target and screen time. Her work has appeared on Scary Mommy, The Stir, Mommyish and more.

Rapid Reads: 6 Big stories of the day

It's the end of the week, but the news never stops. Here are the top stories everyone will be talking about:

1. Guilty as charged

Yesterday a jury found Daniel Holtzclaw guilty of 18 of 36 charges of rape in the first degree and forced oral sodomy. For months, the officer preyed on women in some of Oklahoma City's poorest neighborhoods, choosing victims with drug or prostitution records that would undermine any claims they could make against him. The Oklahoma City police chief called his crimes "the greatest abuse of police authority I have witnessed in my 37 years as a member of this agency." Jurors recommend 263 years of prison. — CNN

2. Spending crisis

Congress has a deadline to pass a spending bill today, and — big surprise — they're not ready. In order to avoid a shutdown, they'll be passing a temporary spending measure that keeps the government open until next Wednesday. The only problem is, this is the second emergency measure like this they've had to pass. The last one was in November, and it's the one that comes to an end today. They're arguing over things like Planned Parenthood and funding gun research, but they'd better find something they can agree on or it's closing time in D.C. once again. — USA Today

More: Advocate for reproductive rights by sending your uterus to Congress

3. Turn on your listening ears

The mega-popular podcast Serial is back with a new season devoted to U.S. Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl. Bergdahl spent five years in captivity with the Taliban before being sent back to the United States in a prisoner exchange. He was accused of desertion and the Obama administration took a ton of heat for bringing him home. Now, the public will get his version of events, as well as some more information about his circumstances and motives for leaving his post. No word on how many episodes there are, but we're betting they're all going to be amazing. — NBC News

More: 7 Things we need from Serial season 2

4. End of an era

The last nude issue of Playboy hits stands today with the legendary Pamela Anderson on the cover. The magazine announced in October that they're doing a full editorial redesign and will no longer publish images of fully nude women. Anderson was interviewed by James Franco for the accompanying article in the issue. The cover, which is Anderson's 14th with the magazine, represents the end of an era for Playboy. — ABC News

5. Go for the gold

The Golden Globe nominees were announced yesterday, and tons of our favorites from this year were included: Trainwreck, Mad Max: Fury Road, Empire, Game of Thrones and Mozart In The Jungle. There are 25 categories in all — 14 in film and 11 in television. The Globes will be broadcast live on Jan. 10, and Ricky Gervais will host for the third time. Best of luck to all your favorites. — Los Angeles Times

More: The Golden Globes get the Ricky Gervais treatment

6. Celebs for gun sense

Celebrities are stepping up to end gun violence. Jennifer Aniston, Sofia Vergara, Amy Schumer, Michael J. Fox and others banded together for a recent Everytown For Gun Safety campaign. In a quick minute-and-a-half video, the celebrities are shown saying, "We can end gun violence." They then invite allies to record themselves saying the same phrase. The video comes as the White House is weighing executive action to expand background checks, and Connecticut is working to keep guns out of the hands of anyone on the no-fly list. Common sense about guns is finally starting to catch on. — Refinery29

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