Ryan Lochte: USOC apologizes to Brazil for swimmers, talks consequences
Ever since swimmer Ryan Lochte alleged that he’d been robbed at gunpoint in Rio during the Summer Olympic Games, the United States Olympic Committee has been monitoring the situation – but not choosing a side in the dueling accounts of what really happened that night.
In a conciliatory statement obtained by PEOPLE, the USOC took the unprecedented step of apologizing to the entire country of Brazil for the alleged actions of Lochte, Gunnar Bentz, Jack Conger and James Feigen.
Lochte has said the foursome was robbed at gunpoint early Sunday, during a taxi ride back to the Olympic village. But the new statement – issued by USOC CEO Scott Blackmun – seems to corroborate what Brazilian authorities said their investigation revealed about the robbery claim, including that there was actually an altercation between the swimmers and gas station security.
Blackmun promises to review the matter for “potential consequences” to the athletes.
Brazilian police have recommended criminal charges of falsely reporting a crime for Feigen and Lochte, after they both gave police interviews about the incident.
Lochte, who returned to America earlier this week, has not yet publicly discussed the ensuing controversy, except when he reaffirmed his story in an interview with NBC. His laywer declined to comment to PEOPLE, but told ABC News in a statement that “a gun was pointed at the swimmers and they were forced to get out of their cab and give up their money.
“No matter what happened at that gas station, the swimmers were robbed by people with a gun appearing to be law enforcement. No matter what country you are in that is robbery and robbery is a serious crime.”
Below is the USOC statement in its entirety: