Olympic swimmer Ryan Lochte suspended after sharing Instagram photo of IV treatment
The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency has suspended Ryan Lochte until July 2019 for a rule violation
Ryan Lochte was suspended on Monday for committing an anti-doping violation, according to to the United States Anti-Doping Agency. The 33-year-old Olympic swimmer -- who has participated in four Summer Games and taken home 12 medals -- is banned for 14 months after he shared an image on social media on May 24 of himself receiving an IV, or intravenous injection, without a therapeutic use exemption (TUE).
Athletes are banned from using an IV greater than 100 mL within 12 hours, except in the case of athletes with TUEs. Lochte, meanwhile, claims that everything was legal. The USADA said that Lochte offered his full participation in the investigation, and despite the legality of the drugs themselves, Lochte said that he accepts the punishment.
"I wasn't taking anything illegal," Lochte said at a press conference, per Nick Zaccardi of NBC Olympics. "Everything was legal. You can get it at CVS, Walgreens, but there are rules, and you have to obey them. ... Don't worry. I'm not giving up. I'm going to keep going."
Lochte, of course, had a run-in with the law at the 2016 Olympics in Brazil when he and teammates Jimmy Feigen, Gunnar Bentz and Jack Conger falsely claimed they were held at gunpoint by Brazilian robbers posing as police. Lochte was later charged for falsely reporting a crime in the incident.
The suspension's official start date will be May 24, the day the photo was posted. Lochte will be eligible by July 24, 2019, meaning that he can still try to prepare for the 2020 Games in Tokyo.
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