Ryan Lochte Says He's Seeking Treatment for 'Serious' Alcohol Problem

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistOctober 5, 2018

FILE - In this Aug. 9, 2016, file photo, United States' Ryan Lochte prepares before a men's 4x200-meter freestyle heat at the 2016 Summer Olympics, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Lochte says he feels
Michael Sohn/Associated Press

Olympic gold-medal winner Ryan Lochte intends to seek professional treatment for alcohol abuse. 

Per TMZ Sports, Jeff Ostrow, Lochte's attorney, described the Olympian's problem as "serious" and said Lochte will be seeking immediate assistance to help him with the issue:

"Ryan has been battling from alcohol addiction for many years and unfortunately it has become a destructive pattern for him. 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 5th Olympics in Tokyo in 2020."

TMZ noted Locthe was involved in an alcohol-related incident at a Newport Beach hotel on Thursday when "he drunkenly tried to kick in his own hotel room door" in the middle of the night. 

No one was arrested as a result of the incident, though police were called after hotel security responded. 

Lochte was previously arrested in Rio de Janeiro during the 2016 Olympics for falsely reporting a crime. Authorities in Brazil noted Lochte and three other United States swimmers who were with him were "so drunk they couldn't give an accurate description" of the robbers. The charges were dropped last July. 

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Lochte is currently serving a 14-month suspension for a United States Anti-Doping Agency violation after posting a photo on social media of himself receiving an intravenous infusion.