AP- Police investigating reports that American swimmer Ryan Lochte and three of his teammates were robbed at gunpoint in a taxi so far have found no evidence supporting the account, and say the swimmers were unable to provide key details in police interviews. A police official with knowledge of the investigation told The Associated Press that police cannot find their taxi driver or witnesses. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because the investigation is ongoing. Lochte’s attorney, Jeff Ostrow, said there was no question the robbery happened and that Lochte had 24-hour security hired after the incident. He hasn’t been leaving his hotel room since.
“This happened the way he described it,” Ostrow said.
According to Lochte and the United States Olympic Committee, the swimmers were returning to the athletes’ village by taxi after a night out at the French Olympic team’s hospitality house in the Rodrigo de Freitas area in the upscale south zone of the city. The outing was several hours after Olympic swimming ended Saturday night at the Rio Games. Traveling with Lochte were Gunnar Bentz, Jack Conger and Jimmy Feigen. Lochte swam in two events at the Rio Games, winning gold in the 4×200-meter freestyle relay. He is a 12-time Olympic medalist. The group did not call police, authorities said, and officers began investigating once they saw media reports in which Lochte’s mother spoke about the robbery. Police interviewed Lochte and one other swimmer, who said they had been intoxicated and could not remember what type and color of taxi they rode in or where the robbery happened, the police official said. The swimmers also could not say what time the events occurred, or when they left the French House.
Is there honestly a chance that Ryan Lochte and his buddies made this whole thing up? I mean I heard all the conspiracy theories once this story broke, but didn’t think he would have the actual brainpower to even think of a plan like that, let alone execute it. At this point we basically have the word of Lochte, his mom, and three Olympians versus the Rio police. Definitely not a Mensa Conference or meeting of the minds.
One one side you have the Rio police, who if memory serves me right, told athletes they would not be safe once they arrived in the Rio airport. And it’s not like the cops are connecting the dots from camera footage shot around the city like the cop from The Night Of. I would imagine Rio has one security camera that they just pass around to whoever has more than $20 in their register that day. And I’m pretty sure this is the Rio chief of police and the detective on the Lochte case.
Then on the other side we have Ryan Lochte. A man that probably wanted some attention after being completely overshadowed by his teammate in yet another Olympics. Staging a fake robbery is straight out of the Pardon My Take PR 101 handbook. However, Lochte is also someone that trademarked the phrase “Jeah”. You cannot discount that. Lochte being able to successfully pull off a fake robbery would be the ultimate anti-Danny Ocean move. A plan with more holes than the 2015 Mets defense. To be honest, I think if the Rio cops pressed on Lochte hard enough, he would confess to being the one that actually robbed everyone a la Michael Scott at the end of The Dinner Party or our boy Hank during the Pirate Porn saga.
So who do we believe: The bumbling Rio cops or the bumbling American Olympian? If only there was one man that was respected by the rich decision-makers in Rio while also having street cred with the poor locals that may be able to shed more light on Lochte’s tall tale.
Boom. Put Olympic Melo on the case and everything will be solved before tonight’s tape delayed but maybe live but probably tape delayed orgy of events on NBC.