USA Swimming suspends Conger, Feigen in wake of robbery fabrication

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Photo Credit: Daulton Venglar | Daily Texan Staff

The United States Olympic Committee and Team USA Swimming announced in a statement Thursday that senior swimmer Jack Conger and former Longhorn Jimmy Feigen will be suspended from team swimming competitions for four months.

The two, along with USA swimmers Ryan Lochte and Gunnar Bentz, were involved in an incident outside the Olympic Village in August, where the swimmers vandalized a gas station and falsely claimed to have been robbed at gunpoint.

“As we have said previously, the behavior of these athletes was not acceptable,” U.S. Olympic Committee CEO Scott Blackmun said in a statement. “It unfairly maligned our hosts and diverted attention away from the historic achievements of Team USA. Each of the athletes has accepted responsibility for his actions and accepted the appropriate sanctions."

A video emerged on Aug. 18 showing the swimmers vandalizing a gas station before an altercation with a Rio security guard. The group claimed individuals dressed as police stopped their cab and held them at gunpoint that same night. Each swimmer issued an apology shortly after Brazilian police called the robbery claim a “fabrication” on Aug. 18.

“It’s our responsibility to take action that reflects the seriousness of what happened,” USA Swimming executive director Chuck Wielgus said. “Unfortunately, this storyline took attention away from the athletes who deserved it the most. These athletes took accountability for their mistakes and are committed to represent themselves and our country with the great character and distinction we expect.”

Both Conger and Feigen won gold medals in Rio competing in the 4x200-meter and 4x100-meter relays respectively.