The Daily Mail has published photos that clearly show Lochte and Jimmy Feigen returning to the Olympic village all smiles, and with all possessions in hand…the exact opposite disposition expected after being robbed at gunpoint in a foreign country.
As we reported yesterday, news broke that US swimmers Lochte and Feigen may have faked the entire robbery story after a Brazil judge asked that their passports be seized upon further questioning.
The judge and police got a look at the CCTV footage and noticed lots of inconsistencies in the swimmers’ robbery story.
The Daily Mail has published the photos take from the Olympic village camera.
Questions: Ryan Lochte (with blond hair) is seen entering the Olympic Village as his teammate Jimmy Feigen (in blue) is seen holding what appears to be a phone or wallet in one hand as he pulls out something else from his other pocket. Gunnar Bentz (being searched) also appeared to have two things in his hand.
Drop off: Feigen (in blue) then drops two items into the bin which could be both a phone and a wallet. Bentz meanwhile atill seems to be holding both a phone and a wallet in his hand while being searched (center).
More questions: Bentz (on right in foreground) is seen holding what appears to be a phone in one hand and a wallet in another as he walks out of frame.
On the one hand: As Feigen (in blue shirt) is searched he can be seen on one side holding his credentials and what looks to be a phone or wallet.
On the other hand: Feigen looks to be holding either a phone or wallet on the flip side of his credentials.
Answers needed: A look at Lochte’s alleged actions in the early hours of Sunday.
The olympic athletes are now accused of lying about the robbery after the publication of the photos and an accompanying CCTV video. Brazilian investigators want answers.
The Daily Mail further reports…
A formal request for their passports to be seized reveals that the two men will now be investigated for the false communication of a crime, which carries a maximum sentence of three years in jail in Brazil.
Records retrieved by investigators from the X-ray machine through which the athletes passed in the Village also showed that the men were carrying all the belongings which they had claimed in sworn statements to police had been stolen.
Lochte, 32, had already flown out of the country and is home in the US while Feigen’s whereabouts are still not known. Feigen, 26, had been in Rio all day Tuesday but it is unclear if he took a flight home before the judge’s order.
In the statement a public prosecutor said that the images from the surveillance video, along with ‘contradictory’ statements made by the athletes to police, further reinforced investigators’ doubt about the veracity of the athletes’ claims they had been robbed.
It read: ‘One sees that the supposed victims arrived with their physical and psychological integrity intact, even playing with each other, showing that there wasn’t any psychological shock inherent to such alleged violence.
‘The more than calm behavior of the athletes straight after the supposed violence, together with other details present in the inquiry, makes me believe that more investigations should be undertaken into the possible false communication of a crime.’
Police also revealed that the surveillance footage, showing the swimmers arriving around 7am, was recorded more than three hours after the supposed robbery.
Lochte and Feigen, the only two of the group who have so far given statements to police, claimed they were so drunk they did not know exactly where they were robbed, nor what type of taxi they took to return to the athletes village.
Further confusion has been caused by Lochte and his team mate’s insistence that they left Club France at 4am – a claim that emerged in court papers released today.
According to a statement made to police and cited by Judge Kayla Blank, the men said they picked up a cab from a nearby gas station.
Unfortunately for the US swimmers in question, the The Daily Mail decided to also follow up with the manager of the gas station, Lucas Alves. Alves said…
— he did not see Lochte or any of the other swimmers in surveillance footage when he reviewed it the following morning.
‘The police came and took all the video from that night,’ said Alves. ‘But I looked at it before they came and you could not see any of the swimmers on it.’
Ipiranga gas station sits on Avenida Borges de Medeiros, approximately 100 yards from the entrance to the Club France compound.
Club France is part of the French hospitality house – an effort to promote the country during the Olympics paid for by the country’s national delegation.
The US Olympic Committee refused to comment, but confirmed that Brazilian police were looking for the swimmers.
This all started when Fox Sports broke the story after speaking to Ryan Lochte’s mother.
Lochte’s mother, told Fox Sports, it was ‘terrifying’ and she had rushed from her hotel to meet her son.
Team USA’s Jenn Suhr told Fox Sports ‘it definitely would have been terrifying’ for Lochte and his teammates.
‘I’m just glad they’re safe… when you’re in another country you don’t know of, it’s not the smartest idea to go places you’re unsure of,’ she said.
Lochte popped up on Snapchat just before the robbery at around 2am to post a video of heavily graffitied Rio sidewalk, possibly taken from a taxi.
He followed up with an obscure photo of four sets of feet, presumably one set of his own, with the message ‘6kdeep’.
The caption, perhaps a reference to how much their smart footwear was collectively worth, could been seen by anyone following his movements on Snapchat.
The black shoes that two of the people in the shot were wearing appeared to be Adidas Yeezy Boost 350s, which are listed online as costing about $1,500.
None of those items were stolen either in the robbery.
At 2:25am Ryab Lochte posted a video of himself and Brazilian swimmer Thiago Pereira, inside a nightclub.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Duran.