A Brazil police official said that Team U.S.A. swimmer Ryan Lochte fabricated his story about being robbed at gunpoint in Rio on Sunday.
According to the Associated Press, the individual has knowledge of the investigation, but spoke on the condition of anonymity.
The individual told the publication that around 6 a.m. on Sunday, Lochte and teammates Jack Conger, Gunnar Bentz and Jimmy Feigen stopped at a gas station in a Rio suburb. One of them tried to open the door of an outside bathroom but it wouldn’t open, so he pushed and broke it. A security guard confronted the four men. He had a pistol, but never drew it.
The manager asked the team to pay for the broken door — after discussion, they did pay and left.
The official also claims that Conger and Bentz, who were removed from a plane leaving Brazil on Wednesday, told police that the story had been made up.
Lochte’s reps could not immediately be reached for comment.
Earlier this week, Ryan Lochte’s mother told USA Today that he and several teammates were robbed by a group carrying guns and knives. The swimmers had claimed their taxi was stopped by people posing as police officers, who then demanded the athletes’ belongings.
On Wednesday, Lochte’s story changed. He told NBC News’ Matt Lauer that the swimmers used a bathroom at a gas station. When they returned to the taxi, the driver didn’t move — that’s when they saw two men approaching with guns and badges who told them to get out of the vehicle.
Later that day, a judge ordered search and seizure warrants for Lochte and teammate James Feigen, including the confiscation of their passports. Surveillance video shows the swimmers laughing and smiling as they returned to the Olympic Village on the night of the purported robbery, while records retrieved by investigators from an X-ray machine they passed through show that the men were in possession of the items they claimed in sworn statements were stolen.
On the same day, police removed Conger and Bentz from a plane before takeoff for questioning — Lochte had already left Brazil, while Feigen’s whereabouts are unknown, but he is believed to be in Brazil.
According to the Daily Mail, the false communication of a crime carries a maximum sentence of three years under Brazilian law.
The AP wrote that USOC spokesman Patrick Sandusky said Lochte’s teammates were scheduling a meeting with authorities.