Rio police have charged American swimmer Ryan Lochte with filing a false robbery report stemming from an incident at the Olympic games.
Lochte initially said that he and three other teammates were pulled over and held up at gunpoint by individuals claiming to be police officers after leaving a party in the early morning hours of Aug. 14. After evidence revealed that the four swimmers were not pulled over, and were instead involved in an altercation with armed security guards at a Rio gas station who accused them of vandalizing a bathroom, Lochte retracted his claims, saying he “over-exaggerated” parts of the story.
According to the Associated Press, Lochte will be informed of the charges in the U.S. and the indictment will be sent to the International Olympic Committee’s Ethics Division.
As Lochte’s story began to fall apart, the other three swimmers involved in the incident — Jack Conger, Gunnar Bentz and Jimmy Feigen — were called in for questioning from Rio police before being allowed to leave the country, but Lochte had already flown home. Earlier Thursday, Lochte was summoned to testify in front of Brazil’s justice department.
The AP reports that the penalty for the charges carries a maximum penalty of 18 months in prison. If Lochte is found guilty, Brazilian authorities could ask the U.S. to extradite Lochte.
In the wake of the incident, four of Lochte’s sponsors, including Speedo and Ralph Lauren, dropped him and he is awaiting punishment from the U.S. Olympic Committee. Not all is lost for the 12-time Olympic medalist, though, as he is reportedly set to compete on the latest season of “Dancing With the Stars.”