And the investigation into the #LochteGate scandal that nearly caused an international incident continues! Authorities claim that Ryan Lochte and his U.S. swim teammates vandalized a gas station restroom during a wild night out in Rio. So… how can they explain the untarnished bathroom The ‘Today Show’ found while looking into the story?
Okay, even we’re having a hard time keeping up with this situation. During Today’s morning news coverage on Aug. 19, correspondent Keir Simmons, 44, visited the gas station where Ryan, 32, Jimmy Feigen, 26, Jack Conger, 21, and Gunnar Bentz, 20, allegedly kicked down a bathroom door and urinated on the property.
Upon arrival, Keir walked through the gas station and back to the bathroom to see the alleged damage. But as he observed the area, he admitted that he couldn’t see any signs of damage or vandalization the boys were accused of doing. Even inside the bathroom, the news correspondent couldn’t detect any signs of foul play. Keir only noted that a poster had ben pulled off of a wall close to the bathroom. Hmm, very interesting.
While this is definitely an interesting piece in the very large puzzle, it doesn’t necessarily indicate Ryan’s innocence. It could either mean that the door was fixed prior to Today’s arrival, or that the security guards were not telling the truth about what happened that night. Nevertheless, this may play a big factor as authorities finish up their investigation.
Whether Ryan and his teammates are liberated from the serious accusations or not, the 12-time gold medalist has already admitted his fault in the incident on Twitter. “I want to apologize for my behavior last weekend — for not being more careful and candid in how I describe the events of that early morning and for my role in taking the focus away from the many athletes fulfilling their dreams of participating in the Olympics,” he wrote in a long-winded post he shared on Aug. 19. Ryan continued to take responsibility for his actions, as well as apologize to his teammates, sponsors, and other olympic athletes that he stole the spotlight from during the whole debacle. Jimmy has also owned up to his part in the incident, agreeing to pay $11K to Brazil for lying to the police about the robbery.
And while the new evidence at the gas station may have altered some of the minds of Ryan’s fans, it isn’t likely that it will have much affect on Brazilian officials or the U.S. Olympic Committee (USOC), who issued an apology to Brazil. “The behavior of these athletes is not acceptable, nor does it represent the values of Team USA or the conduct of the vast majority of its members,” the USOC said. “We will further review the matter, and any potential consequences for the athletes, when we return to the United States.”
Today’s Bob Costas noted that the “consequences” for Ryan specifically, could cost him up to $11 million in endorsements. Yikes! Let’s just hope that Ryan and the team learned a huge lesson from this.
HollywoodLifers, do you think the new evidence clears Ryan’s name, or is he still responsible?