Jimmy Feigen, one of the accused Team USA swimmers in “Lochtgate,” has struck a deal to avoid prosecution.
As you’ve heard, Jimmy Feigen is one of the four swimmers who were caught in a scandalous lie about being robbed in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Once surveillance footage surfaced, Feigen, along with his accomplice teammates, was seen urinating on the store’s property, breaking a door, and ripping down an advertisement frame, as reported by the San Antonio Express.
Jimmy Feigen had been detained and not allowed to leave Brazil while facing possible prosecution. However, according to Brazilian law, these were minor offenses.
And in Brazil, trials for minor criminal offenses can be avoided if the charged person makes a contribution to a charitable institution.
According to Feigen’s attorney, Breno Malaragno, under Brazilian law, Jimmy was eligible to pay $10,800 (or 35,000 reals) to avoid formal charges for lying to police about being robbed.
The San Antonio Express reports Malaragno didn’t respond to emails and comments regarding Jimmy Feigen’s settlement.
However, the source mentions that the Olympic swimmer had chosen to donate the money to the Instituto Reacao.
The news source notes the charity as “an athletic organization that trained Rafaela Silva, who went from the City of God slum to winning a gold medal in judo and became an icon for this country’s downtrodden Afro-Brazilian population.”
ABC News mentions that Jimmy Feigen’s passport was confiscated during the investigation. Feigen’s attorney notes that Jimmy would be allowed to leave the country after payment is made.
The San Antonio Express also reports the United States Olympic Committee’s response to Jimmy Feigen and the other three swimmers.
“On behalf of the United States Olympic Committee, we apologize to our hosts in Rio and the people of Brazil for this distracting ordeal in the midst of what should rightly be a celebration of excellence.”
Distracting ordeal? It’s far more than “distracting.” It’s disrespectful.
These swimmers represented, in part, the very best of U.S. athletes. In essence, American representatives took it upon themselves to vandalize a business in Brazil.
Then, they made matters even worse by lying about it.
And adding insult to injury, Jimmy Feigen’s teammate, Ryan Lochte, has chosen to downplay the situation with an evasive apology.
If you look at Lochte’s Instagram page, you’ll see that many commentators aren’t buying his statement. It’s been called “shallow” many times.
You can read it for yourself below.
Although Jimmy Feigen’s teammate recalls the experience as “traumatic,” their reactions certainly weren’t those of traumatized individuals.
One commentator, Mari Rodriguez, notes the following statements regarding the Feigen/Lochte incident.
“For those AMERICAN who still say that security can get them on gun. They were all drunk! They made a mess in gas station! They broke thing’s there! They were out of control because they were drunk!. The security was gonna call the police but they offer money to fix the things they broken. I am REALLY happy that this was all a LIE. Accept it! It’s terrible that he made American people ashamed.”
Several others note their actions as “disgraceful.”
In case you haven’t heard of the other two U.S. swimmers involved in the Ryan Lochte and Jimmy Feigen scandal, they are Gunnar Bentz and Jack Conger.
As you can see from their return, they’ve ignored all questions regarding the incident.
While Lochte’s and Feigen‘s Twitter accounts are totally accessible, Bentz’s and Conger’s remain protected.
What are your thoughts regarding Jimmy Feigen’s payout to avoid prosecution? Feel free to share your comments below.
[Photo by Michael Sohn/AP Images]