US swimmer Ryan Lochte apologizes for his behavior and "not being more careful or candid" in how he described events.
Police announced Thursday that Ryan Lochte and three of his teammates had not been held at gunpoint after a night of partying, as Lochte claimed. Instead, Brazilian police said the men, while intoxicated, vandalized a gas station bathroom and were questioned by armed guards before they paid for the damage and left.
Lochte issued the following apology Friday morning:
Full text below:
"I want to apologize for my behavior last weekend -- for not being more careful and candid in how I described the events of that early morning and for my role in taking the focus away from many athletes fulfilling their dreams of participating in the Olympics. I waited to share these thoughts until it was confirmed that the legal situation was addressed and it was cleat that my teammates would be arriving home safely.
It's traumatic to be out late with your friends in a foreign country - with a language barrier - and have a stranger point a gun at you and demand money to let you leave, but regardless of the behavior of anyone else that night, I should have been more responsible in how I handled myself and for that am sorry to my teammates, my fans, my fellow competitors, my sponsors, and the hosts of this great event. I am very proud of represent my country in Olympic competition and this was a situation that could and should have been avoided. I accept responsibility for my role in this happening and have learned some valuable lessons.
I am grateful for my USA Swimming teammates and the USOC and appreciate al the efforts of the IOC, the Rio '16 Hose Committee, and the people of Brazil who welcomed us to Rio and worked so hard to make sure that these Olympic Games provided a lifetime of great new memories.
There has already been too much said and too many valuable resources dedicated to what happened last weekend, so I hope we can spend our time celebrating the great stories and performances of these Games and look ahead to celebrating future successes," Lochte said on Instagram.