Russian Olympic Champion Narrates ‘Amicable’ Robbery in Rio

Russia's Evgeny Korotyshkin poses on the podium with his medal after winning silver in the men's 100m butterfly final swimming event at the London 2012 Olympic Games on August 3, 2012 in London. AFP PHOTO / MARTIN BUREAU (Photo credit should read MARTIN BUREAU/AFP/GettyImages)
Yevgeny Korotyshkin winning the silver medal at the 2012 Summer Games (MARTIN BUREAU/AFP/GettyImages)

The latest high-profile victim of a violent robbery in Rio de Janeiro is Yevgeny Korotyshkin, an Olympic silver medalist and the president of the Moscow Swimming Federation. He joins Portugal’s Minister of Education and the head of security for the 2016 Olympic Games in having experienced a mugging while traveling between Olympic venues.

Korotyshkin posted about his robbery on the social media network Instagram. “This post is not about sports, but how they failed,” he wrote Wednesday. “Walk toward the Bar Astor in Ipanema, I was robbed. All is well with me, they separated from me amicably.”

Korotyshkin describes the incident as an “emotional story” and notes the amicable departure was due to him handing over all his valuables.

Всем привет… Этот пост не о спорте,а о том куда его занесло. Сегодня по дороге в ресторан Astor на обед, в районе пляжа Ипанема, я был ограблен двоими не известными с оружием. Спешу сообщить ,что со мной все хорошо. Разошлись полюбовно. Я им все из карманов взамен на захватывающую историю для потомства. Не дорого. Но волнительно… P.S. Бэкап контактов не возможен по некоторым причинам. Скиньте плиз свои номера телефонов по whatsapp #roadtomoscow2016

A photo posted by Evgeny Korotyshkin (@ekorotyshkin) on

Ipanema is considered one of the more upscale and safe neighborhoods in Rio de Janeiro, though locals have recently increasingly protested that they no longer feel safe there.

Korotyshkin accompanied his message with an image of Brazilian youth holding firearms and smiling, which some media outlets have reported as an image of the robbers in question; it is actually Los Angeles Times photo from a feature about Rio de Janeiro’s notorious favela slums.

Korotyshkin’s is the latest in a series of similar incidents. On Saturday, Tiago Brandão Rodrigues, Portugal’s education minister, was robbed at gunpoint leaving an Olympic cycling event. He did not lose any of his belongings, as locals tackled the robbers and detained them until police could arrive; one of the robbers had to be hospitalized after the incident, but Rodrigues escaped unscathed. Rodrigues described the incident as a “fright” but little more and asked observers not to judge the Olympics through the lens of this crime. Shortly before that attack, robbers targeted Felipe Seixas, the head of Olympics security. As Seixas traveled with undercover police, one robber was immediately shot and killed, while the rest sped away on bicycles. There has not been a report that the assailants have been caught.

Athletes, particularly foreigners, have been the target of robberies for weeks since their descent into Rio de Janeiro to train for the Olympics. Two Australian Paralympians were robbed at gunpoint while training weeks before the event. An international jiu-jitsu champion was abducted and forced to take money out of an ATM shortly after that incident; Jason Lee of New Zealand asserted that his kidnappers were members of the Military Police.

Officials are also expressing concern regarding unintentional attacks on Olympic venues. The Olympic equestrian tent has now been the target of two stray bullets, one tearing through a press conference and the other found on the floor of the tent. Olympics security officials have vowed to increase surveillance of that particular venue after the discovery of a second bullet, which authorities claim likely landed there from a nearby gunfight between police and drug traffickers.

“I guarantee that the site was not the target, because the bullet was intact, and from out observation fell from the sky, without force,” an official identified by O Globo as General Ramos clarified. “It is dangerous, of course it is. But I give you my word for your safety,” he told reporters in the equestrian tent.


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