Ryan Lochte botched his summer plans in Rio when he lied about having been robbed at gunpoint. Since then, the Olympian has been trying to distance himself from the scandal he caused, though the 10-month ban handed down by the United States Olympic Committee and USA Swimming probably isn’t what he had in mind. But one of the stops on his redemption tour does include Dancing With The Stars, where Lochte is competing against fellow gold medalist Laurie Hernandez and former Texas governor Rick Perry. Lochte made his ballroom debut last night, much to the chagrin of some audience members.
As Lochte and his partner, Cheryl Burke, submitted themselves to judging post-foxtrot, two men who rushed the stage and interrupted panelist Carrie Ann Inaba’s analysis. The incident wasn’t captured for posterity by ABC’s cameras; instead, host Tom Bergeron instructed the audience to “take a deep breath” before he kicked it to commercial. But one People magazine reporter got footage of security tackling one of the protestor.
A different audience member managed to capture the action in the seats, where the rest of the anti-Lochte contingent had hung back before being removed from the auditorium.
The protestors haven’t been identified, nor has their anti-Lochte message been specified. Were they opposed to Lochte being allowed to benefit from his Olympic fame? Or were they just itching to see the lindy hop instead? No other details have been released, but Inaba confirmed that Lochte and the rest of the DWTS crew were left unharmed.