Ryan Lochte incident: Summons to testify in Brazil expected


UPDATE: Olympic swimmer Ryan Lochte is expected to be summoned to testify in Brazil about a robbery he reported during the games. If he fails to appear in Brazil, he could be tried in absentia and would not be able to engage in a plea deal, according to the Fox News report.

Read the original report below.

Following the loss of endorsement deals after Lochte admitted he "over-exaggerated" his story of being robbed at gunpoint by Brazilian civilians posing as police officials, a report claims there may be gaps in the version of the story that was given by Rio police.

USA Today said in a report it has constructed a narrative of the events in the incident, which also involved Olympic swimmers Gunnar Bentz, Jimmy Feigen and Jack Conger, that it says may indicate Rio police fabricated reports of the incident as well.

>> Read more trending stories

Here are the investigation findings, according to USA Today:

Claims that the Rio police were not transparent

USA Today said that when its reporters requested information, Rio police declined, saying the investigation was confidential. It said that part of the released reports of testimony given by Conger and Bentz, which contained statements that expressed doubt about Lochte's story, does not include the part of the statements that mentioned interactions with armed Rio authorities.

The newspaper said Rio's civil police would not provide the full testimony, and the portion of testimony that was released was removed from the organization's social media sites.

Related: Ryan Lochte loses 4 endorsement deals in one day

It reported that police accused Lochte and Feigen filing of a false police report, which may result in six months in prison and a fine. Bentz and Conger do not face charges. Feigen paid a settlement to avoid charges.

USA Today cited Deborah Srour, who said she practiced law in Brazil for 25 years and has represented Americans arrested in Brazil, as saying the swimmers' actions do not match the accusation by police.

"This crime only happens when you go to the police and you make a report, you file a report,"’ Srour said. "This did not happen."

Damage by swimmers to gas station restroom unclear

According to USA Today's report, Brazilian authorities said the swimmers vandalized a gas station restroom, but the paper said a reporter who visited the area did not see evidence of a broken soap dispenser, restroom doors or mirrors as Rio police chief Fernando Veloso said at a news conference.

Related: Al Roker blasts Ryan Lochte: 'He lied!'

The report said that, upon observing released surveillance video, swimmers were not seen going near any of the restrooms, contrary to Rio authorities' statements. USA Today said it only found a sign that was torn down, which it said matched statements from authorities and bystander Fernando Deluz. It also said Bentz's statement to police and authorities' narrative supported that the swimmers urinated behind the gas station.

Whether guards drew weapons on the swimmers is also unclear

It is not clear whether or not the guards, who USA Today said were police working a private security detail, drew a weapon on the swimmers. What is agreed upon, according to USA Today, is that the guards who allegedly showed their law enforcement badges to the swimmers after they urinated behind the gas station prevented the swimmers from leaving.

Related: Report: Teammate claims Lochte fabricated robbery story

As the swimmers tried to leave in a cab, USA Today reported that surveillance videos show a man stopping the cab. The man appears to have something in his hand. Veloso confirmed in a news conference that the guards were state police, but would not identify them and defended the guards for drawing weapons. USA Today said Bentz's statement about what happened after the cab was stopped -- that guards pointed their guns at the swimmers -- "could be attributed to cultural and linguistic clumsiness or to the swimmers allegedly being inebriated."

Debate over whether the swimmers were robbed, as Lochte claimed

Bentz's account said the swimmers were held at gunpoint until they paid the guards. "I gave them what I had in my wallet, which was a $20 bill, and Jimmy gave them 100 reais, which is about $50 in total. They lowered the guns, and I used hand gestures to ask if it was OK to leave, and they said yes,” his statement said.

USA Today cited witness Deluz, who said that the damage to the sign could have been resolved with an apology even if the swimmers had no money to pay for the damage, but the newspaper said the witness's claim does not match Bentz's statement, or Lochte's story, in which he said "there was a gun pointed in our direction and we were demanded to give money."

Related: What Ryan Lochte said about the Rio robbery

USA Today cited Rio Judge Joao Batista Damasceno as saying it may not be a robbery if the guards only asked for the amount of the damage. "But if the amount taken is higher than the value of the damages, with the use of a weapon by the 'security,' this is robbery."

Deluz said if the men were robbing the swimmers, they would have taken all the money rather than accept the requested payment, which Deluz said was understood as being tied to the damage to the sign.


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Springfield Entertainment

Artists bringing the funk to downtown Dayton wall 
Artists bringing the funk to downtown Dayton wall 

A wall near the edge of downtown and the Oregon District is being covered with funk.  Dayton-based artist Morris Howard says the “Land of Funk” murals being painted on the Stone Street railroad wall is long overdue.  “I want them (Dayton’s funk musicians) to get the appreciation they have earned,” Howard...
’No Erasin’: Steve Perry releases first new song in 20 years, album to be released in October
’No Erasin’: Steve Perry releases first new song in 20 years, album to be released in October

Steve Perry fans have waited decades for new material from the former Journey lead singer. They’ve finally gotten their wish as he released the video for “No Erasin” on YouTube late Tuesday night. The song begins with the lyric, “I know it’s been a long time coming.” >> Read more trending news ...
JUST ANNOUNCED: Bellwether Music Festival to return next summer — and tickets are on sale now
JUST ANNOUNCED: Bellwether Music Festival to return next summer — and tickets are on sale now

Just days after its debut in Southwest Ohio, the Bellwether Music Festival has announced it will return next year.  The debut event took place this past weekend at Renaissance Park in Waynesville. The two-day music and camping festival will return in 2019 and take place on Friday, Aug. 9 and Saturday, Aug. 10. Early bird passes are on sale now...
Viva Las Aerosmith! Steven Tyler announces band’s Vegas residency
Viva Las Aerosmith! Steven Tyler announces band’s Vegas residency

Aerosmith is setting up shop in Sin City. Steven Tyler and the rest of the legendary band announced that they’re setting up residency on the Las Vegas Strip next year. Shows begin at the Park Theater at Park MGM on April 6, 2019, Variety reported. Sales for “Deuces Are Wild” concerts will open to the Aerosmith fan club ...
Jury says former NASCAR driver Greg Biffle intruded on ex-wife's privacy
Jury says former NASCAR driver Greg Biffle intruded on ex-wife's privacy

Jurors reached a verdict Monday in the civil court case involving former NASCAR driver Greg Biffle.  According to the jury, Greg Biffle did invade the privacy of his ex-wife, Nicole Biffle. Nicole Biffle and her mother sued him, claiming Greg Biffle had hidden cameras installed in bedrooms and bathrooms of their mansion, recorded them and...
More Stories