USOC CEO Says Lochte et al. Will Face Sanction After Gas Station Flap

Scott Blackmun, the CEO of the United States Olympic Committee (USOC), says that his organization will be announcing further action regarding American swimmers Ryan LochteJimmy Feigen, Gunnar Bentz, and Jack Conger.

Speaking with ESPN, Blackmun didn’t offer details on what is being considered, but did say more action would be coming.

“They let down our athletes,” Blackmun said. “They let down Americans.

“And they really let down our hosts in Rio who did such a wonderful job, and we feel very badly about that. I think we ended up in the right place in terms of being able to shine a light on what really happened there.”

There are several organizations that could sanction the athletes, including FINA, USA Swimming, the International Olympic Committee, and in the case of Bentz and Conger their respective collegiate programs or even the NCAA.

So far, though, all have taken a ‘wait-and-see’ approach and none have announced any specific actions they will take. CNN late last week announced that USA Swimming had suspended Lochte, but a USA Swimming spokesperson denied those reports, claiming that no decisions had been made on any punishment, suspension or otherwise.

The four swimmers are under fire after Lochte, who has become the lightning rod, told international media that the group was robbed at gun point by men impersonating police officers early in the morning on August 14th. Videos would later show that after Lochte caused some damage at the gas station, the group was held by station security guards (who had guns) until around $50 USD equivalent was paid for the damage, when they were allowed to leave. Brazilian authorities claim that the security guards were awaiting police to arrive after the swimmers urinated on the outside of the building and Lochte caused damage. Statements by two of the swimmers, Conger and Bentz, affirm that the swimmers did urinate on the building and concurred that Lochte did cause damage to a sign at the bathroom, and that they knew they weren’t being robbed in the most literal senses – despite Lochte’s claim as such to the media.

Lochte appeared in an interview on NBC on Saturday to explain what he called an “overexaggeration.” Read more about that interview here.

Lochte and Feigen were indicted on charges of falsifying a police report, though there’s been no indication yet of any charges pressed by the owner of the gas station. Lochte left the country prior to those charges being filed against him, but Feigen was unable to leave until making a $10,800 donation to charity, which is allowed under Brazilian law to escape prosecution on minor offenses. All four swimmers are now back in the United States.

 

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FLIP
4 years ago

To sanction Jack or Gunnar is absurd.

NSwim
Reply to  FLIP
4 years ago

Agreed, they didn’t make statements backing up Ryan’s statement and they did not appear to act as though they were victims of a crime. They just were in the wrong place at the wrong time with the wrong people.

Coach Mike 1952
Reply to  NSwim
4 years ago

Let this be a VERY GOOD lesson to them. Grow up time guys!

Scott Morgan
Reply to  Coach Mike 1952
4 years ago

Yes, the lesson to not hang out with 30 year olds in the 50 IQ range who also suffer from megalomaniacal delusions and an inflated sense of importance.

Yada
Reply to  Scott Morgan
4 years ago

“I’m Scott Morgan and I can calculate someones IQ and provide psychiatric diagnoses without ever meeting them”-Scott Morgan, probably

Scott Morgan
Reply to  Yada
4 years ago

Weak

Yada
Reply to  Scott Morgan
4 years ago

Goldberg rule. Look it up, smartypants

Yada
Reply to  Yada
4 years ago

GoldWATER Rule. Auto-correct, apologies

Wasted
Reply to  Scott Morgan
4 years ago

Scott Morgan, super genius. It must be nice to be perfect. Though if I had to choose, I am definitely going out partying with lochte.

Yada
Reply to  Wasted
4 years ago

Wile E Coyote, Thuuuperrrr Geniusss
*falls off thousand foot cliff*

Yada
Reply to  Yada
4 years ago

Guess it’s too young of a crowd for that reference eh?

Coach Mike 1952
Reply to  Yada
4 years ago

Not

Scott Morgan
Reply to  Wasted
4 years ago

If by “super genius” you mean someone who wouldn’t urinate on someone’s property, cause a scene after damaging property, lie and exaggerate to the media and authorities, and disrespect my team, then yes. And if you think not saying “I over exaggerated” makes me “perfect”, then perfect I am. Otherwise, it would seem that my words simply offended another Lochte fanboy who either likes or condones his behaviour and public persona. I do not.

Yada
Reply to  Scott Morgan
4 years ago

That’s not being disputed by anyone anymore, at least I don’t think it is. But your self-righteousness is still pitiable

John
Reply to  Yada
4 years ago

Not as pitiable as your defence of Lochte, whom you want to “party” with, unless of course you know him personally and know how being in his company is so desirable. Perhaps you like to be around famous people because it makes you feel better or you have a similarly low IQ. (Your grammatical mistakes do tend to suggest the latter.)

Yada
Reply to  John
4 years ago

That was actually Wasted’s comment, not mine. Good try though.

Charlotte
Reply to  FLIP
4 years ago

They likely broke the code of conduct and should be punished, we will see how much. Six months and missing a few championship meets would not be too big a deal to Conger and Bentz. Feigen may retire and get on with post swimming life at age 26.

Attila the Hunt
Reply to  FLIP
4 years ago

Gunnar actually broke a very specific rule:
Under 21 were not allowed to go out of olympics village after 1 am.
Gunnar is still 20.

Taa
Reply to  Attila the Hunt
4 years ago

In bulldog years that’s 140

Attila the Hunt
Reply to  Taa
4 years ago

Bulldogs also pee in house yards and on the walls.

Billabong
Reply to  FLIP
4 years ago

I would also like to see leniency for Jack and Gunnar. Their culpability is very minor. I’m still flabbergasted that these two young men paid the $50 to the attendants and The Big Man Lochte, who didn’t even pony up a single dollar was the one moaning about getting robbed! You couldn’t make it up.

jarrettbrown
4 years ago

How were Americans let down? Granted there was a language barrier and Lochte and Co where drunker than a frat boy at a rush party, but how is an entire country let down because of something that happens in the US on a regular basis?

northernsue
Reply to  jarrettbrown
4 years ago

For me, there are two big reasons. 1) These men were representing America, so I expect more than drunken frat boy behavior. 2) Ryan not only lied but told a story that took advantage of Rio’s hospitality and poked at Rio where it was most sensitive (the global readiness to believe in Rio’s violence and Rio obviously wanting to put a good face forward). Without Ryan’s mouth, this story never hits the press, and then he continues to lie, lie, lie. Classless.

R.P
Reply to  jarrettbrown
4 years ago

They were In a foreign country representing the United States. The flag on the cap is more important than the name under it.

Chris
Reply to  R.P
4 years ago

Really? They were in street clothes at a gas station near a nightclub. This is way outside the scope of the USOC. The proper sanctions if any are criminal and come from a court of law in Brazil.

DutchWomen
Reply to  jarrettbrown
4 years ago

Really? How about…. they are our top athletes, representing the US in a foreign country, wearing the stars and stripes, anthem played for gold medals and so forth…

When you go to a party you represent yourself, your family, your school perhaps…if you screw up you let down those people and perhaps a few more. When you put on the American flag, represent the US OLYMPIC TEAM, and screw up in another country, you thereby let down the entire US, yes. It is hard to comprehend how/why people want to keep defending Lochte and co…Lochte said it himself in a previous SwimSwam article about dry season “yeah, we had it in college, but I never followed it blah blah blah.”

H2O Bruin
Reply to  jarrettbrown
4 years ago

If you really have to ask, then you really don’t understand anything. Athletes come and go, but the image, reputation, the goodwill, sportsmanship etc. can be tarnished if certain athletes do not behave in an ethical manner according to the high standards of what US athletics is supposed to be then it is pretty clear they have no business representing an influential, powerful, diverse country such as ours.

John
Reply to  H2O Bruin
4 years ago

The image can only be tarnished when people lump people together by nationality. It’s like saying Trump represents all Americans. I have no problem in looking at a swimmer as an individual and nothing more. Always have done, always will.

Coach Mike 1952
Reply to  jarrettbrown
4 years ago

Look at the statement released by Notre Dame today about their misconduct issues. Clear, crisp & decisive.

Just Another Opinion
Reply to  jarrettbrown
4 years ago

Well, not the entire country – just the part who expect high standards of behavior from the people representing them. People with low standards aren’t likely to see anything wrong with what happened in the first place.

American Lawyer
Reply to  Just Another Opinion
4 years ago

Touche!

John
Reply to  jarrettbrown
4 years ago

Agree – but I don’t understand the opposite either! When they do well, lots of people here think it reflects on them and bask in reflected glory! Inexplicable to me in both cases.

WHAT
4 years ago

I can’t believe Lochte got worse press than the moroccan athlete who raped a girl… Honestly the double standard of media and people is incredible.

But of course Ryan is more vandal and criminal than him. It’s Ryan Lochte … and deserves the dead.

Jim C
Reply to  WHAT
4 years ago

I can believe that Lochte got worse press than the Moroccan athlete who raped a girl.

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Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder of SwimSwam.com. He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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