Ryan Lochte has confirmed that he and three other members of the United States Swim Team were robbed this morning in Rio de Janeiro.
The four swimmers – a group that also included Gunnar Bentz, Jack Conger and Jimmy Feigen – were in a taxi headed for the Olympic Village when the incident occurred, according the the U.S. Olympic Committee.
Patrick Sandusky, a spokesman for the organization, explained what happened via the following statement:
“According to four members of the U.S. Olympic Swimming Team, they left France House early Sunday morning in a taxi headed for the Olympic Village.
“Their taxi was stopped by individuals posing as armed police officers who demanded the athletes’ money and other personal belongings.”
“All four athletes are safe and cooperating with authorities.”
Lochte’s mother, Ileana Lochte, also spoke to USA Today of the incident.
“I think they’re all shaken up. There were a few of them,” she told the newspaper. “No, they were just, they just took their wallets and basically that was it.”
A 12-time Olympic medalist, Lochte won one gold medal during the Rio Games.
He wrapped up his 2016 Olympic experience on Thursday night.
Lochte himself, meanwhile, described the robbery to NBC on Sunday afternoon.
“We got pulled over, in the taxi, and these guys came out with a badge, a police badge, no lights, no nothing just a police badge and they pulled us over.
“They pulled out their guns, they told the other swimmers to get down on the ground – they got down on the ground.
“I refused, I was like we didn’t do anything wrong, so – I’m not getting down on the ground.
“And then the guy pulled out his gun, he cocked it, put it to my forehead and he said, ‘Get down,’ and I put my hands up, I was like ‘whatever.’
“He took our money, he took my wallet – he left my cell phone, he left my credentials.”
Damn. Scary stuff.
Police officials have told NBC News they weren’t contacted about the incident, but they are available to help the athletes if necessary.
When news of the robbery first hit, an IOC spokesperson denied that it took place.
This spokesperson has since acknowledged that it took place, claiming he didn’t have pertinent information upon first making the denial.
In a recent interview with E! News, the 32-year-old said he needed a break from swimming.
He said he was unsure if he would complete four years from now in the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, Japan.
“Going in day in and day out just beating up your body, it takes a toll. Being at the age I am now, it’s definitely time that I need a break, but I can’t say it’s over,” he said.
Taking advantage of his fame after the 2012 Olympics Games in London, Lochte signed on for What Would Ryan Lochte Do?.
This E! reality series, which chronicled life for Ryan Lochte as the single and somewhat goofy Ryan Lochte, lasted just one season.
We wish Lochte well.