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Ryan Lochte Apologizes After Armed Robbery Claim In Rio

RIO DE JANEIRO (CBS/AP) -- U.S. swimmer Ryan Lochte is apologizing for how he behaved the night he claimed he was robbed at gunpoint in Brazil after the last Olympic swimming races ended.

The decorated Olympian said he was sorry "for not being more careful and candid in how I described the events of that early morning." He also apologized for pulling the spotlight away from other Olympic athletes.

The saga began when Lochte claimed that he and his teammates were held at gunpoint and robbed by men with police badges.

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Brazilian police said Thursday that the swimmers were not robbed after a night of partying, and the intoxicated athletes instead vandalized a gas station bathroom and were questioned by armed guards before they paid for the damage and left.

The robbery that was or wasn't has become the biggest spectacle outside of the Olympic venues in Rio, casting a shadow over American athletes amid an otherwise remarkable run at the Summer Games. The ordeal was also a blow to Brazilians, who for months endured scrutiny about whether the city could keep athletes and tourists safe given its long history of violence.

"No robbery was committed against these athletes. They were not victims of the crimes they claimed," Civil Police Chief Fernando Veloso said during a news conference.

In his apology, Lochte still called the incident "traumatic," and reiterated that he had a gun pointed at him, but acknowledged that he should have been "much more responsible."

The swimmers could potentially face punishment — probation, suspension, a fine or expulsion — under USA Swimming's code of conduct. It was not clear if the swimmers would face criminal charges, though police said the athletes could be charged with destruction of property, falsely reporting a crime or both.

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(TM and © Copyright 2016 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2016 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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