Ryan Lochte is getting help for an alcohol addiction of many years, his lawyer confirmed Friday.
“Ryan has been battling from alcohol addiction for many years, and unfortunately it has become a destructive pattern for him,” Jeff Ostrow said in comments first reported by TMZ and confirmed by Ostrow.
“He has acknowledged that he needs professional assistance to overcome his problem and will be getting help immediately.
“Ryan knows that conquering this disease now is a must for him to avoid making future poor decisions, to be the best husband and father he can be, and if he wants to achieve his goal to return to dominance in the pool in his fifth Olympics in Tokyo in 2020.”
TMZ reported Lochte was involved in an early morning California hotel incident Thursday.
Lochte, a 12-time Olympic medalist, is currently banned until July for a doping rule violation.
One of Lochte’s social media accounts published an image of him receiving an IV infusion of a legal substance that, after a U.S. Anti-Doping Agency investigation with Lochte’s cooperation, was deemed above the legal limit of 100 milliliters on May 24.
Lochte was previously banned 10 months in 2016 and 2017 by USA Swimming for his role in the infamous Rio gas-station incident. Lochte said he had too much to drink that night at the Olympics and was “very intoxicated.”
Lochte will turn 36 years old during the Tokyo Olympics, when he will be older than all but two previous U.S. Olympic swimmers in individual events (Edgar Adams, 1904, and Dara Torres, 2008).
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