Lolo Jones Won't Be Punished Following Alleged Bar Fight

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistJuly 17, 2013

Photo courtesy of Red Bull
Photo courtesy of Red Bull

Olympic hurdler Lolo Jones has made her fair share of headlines since crossing over to the world of bobsledding from track and field. She'll likely face criticism after a reported bar fight, although she won't be disciplined by the U.S. Bobsled and Skeleton Federation, according to a report from Mike Singer of CBS Sports: 

USBSF spokeswoman Amanda Bird said team officials found no evidence that Jones had “knocked out” the woman, as had been previously reported. Police also said no charges were filed.

Darrin Steele, the CEO for USBSF, was disappointed about the incident, which took place in the small town where the federation is based, but said he doesn't believe any team rules were violated.

“That could change if new information emerges, but I'm not expecting that to happen at this point,” he said to the AP. “It's a good reminder of why our athletes need to avoid putting themselves in situations where things like this can happen.”

Kelly Whiteside of USA Today first reported the incident, as well as USA Bobsled and Skeleton Federation's investigation into whether Jones was involved in a bar fight on Friday night in Lake Placid, N.Y.

"We are treating this like we have with any other situation by investigating to see if there is a code of conduct violation," (USBSF spokesperson Amanda) Bird wrote in an email.

Whiteside is reporting that no charges have been filed by police.

News of the alleged bar fight spread when former Olympic swimmer Amy Van Dyken told the story on her radio show on Monday. According to Van Dyken's account, she heard that Jones had fought the stepdaughter of Bobsled Hall of Famer Tony Carlino, although the alleged altercation has yet to be confirmed by any firsthand parties.

Jones has come under fire to some degree since she was named to the US national bobsled team last October. This stems largely from a Vine that Jones posted on her Twitter account back in June. In the much-maligned Vine, Jones showed the meager paycheck she was given by USA Bobsled and Skeleton Federation, and she then proceeded to pretend like she was calling her landlord, while saying that the rent would be a little late.

While some saw the humor in Jones' Vine, others, like Olympic gold medalist Steven Holcomb, weren't so amused, according to a Whiteside report:

"It wasn't taken very well," Holcomb said. "People were really kind of insulted. You just made $741, more than most athletes in the sport. So what are you complaining about?"

Jones turned to bobsledding to try to experience Olympic glory after her track career in the hurdles flamed out following disappointments in the 2008 and 2012 Games.  

Her beauty and revelation before the 2012 London Games that she's still a virgin has kept her in the news and relevant in pop culture.

It will be interesting to see what comes of these recent allegations as Jones is already a polarizing figure in the sport. Even if it turns out to be a misunderstanding, it's still likely to impact Jones' reputation negatively due to the fact she's under the microscope more than perhaps any female athlete in the world right now.


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