Ryan Lochte released an apology statement regarding the recent controversy at the Rio Games that doesn't actually include much apologizing in it.
The American swimmer, who nearly got charged with falsifying a criminal report in Brazil after claiming he was robbed by men impersonating as police, posted the statement on social media Friday. He said he wanted to apologize for his behavior, then proceeded to spend the majority of the statement not actually apologizing for anything.
"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 the many athletes fulfilling their dreams of participating in the Olympics. I wanted to share these thoughts until it was confirmed that the legal situation was addressed and it was clear 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 much 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 to 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 all of the efforts of the IOC, the Rio '16 Host 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 decided to what happened last weekend, so I hope we spend our time celebrating the great stories and performances of these Games and look ahead to future successes."
Lochte, 32, started international drama earlier this week when he told reporters that he and three other American swimmers had been robbed at gunpoint after their taxi was pulled over by men impersonating police. It became a major news story, but days later, a Brazilian investigation showed parts of his claims were untrue.
The Americans did have a gun pointed at them by a security guard at a gas station, but video showed the swimmers acting inappropriately and damaging property beforehand. They also weren't pulled over, and had stopped at the gas station in a taxi. Falsifying a criminal report is illegal in Brazil, so the authorities were considering whether to press charges against Lochte and the other swimmers, Gunnar Bentz, Jack Conger and Jimmy Feigen. All four swimmers have returned home to the United States after Bentz and Conger cooperated with police and Feigen agreed to pay a $10,800 fine to charity.
Now the situation appears to be resolved, but Lochte's apology could easily be seen as lacking. He says he should have been "more responsible" and "more candid and careful," but there's no mention of his actions at the gas station, how he misled reporters and authorities about what had happened to cover his own tracks or how this situation impacted others. It's better than nothing -- and a Rio 2016 spokesperson said they accept his apology -- but this hasn't been the best week for the 12-time Olympic medalist.