Scotty Lago, winner of the bronze medal in the men’s halfpipe snowboarding event Wednesday, voluntarily left the Winter Olympics Friday after risqué photos of a woman kissing and biting the medal surfaced in the media.
The free-spirited Lago, 22, was snapped with his bronze medal around his waist and the hardware hung over his groin area, allowing a woman to kiss it on a public street late Thursday in Vancouver.
A second shot shows the woman biting the medal, but this time Lago is holding it up by the logo on his Team USA T-shirt.
Lago apologized to the U.S. Olympic Committee and the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association, which required athletes to attend a special ambassador program prior to the games to avoid potential publicity nightmares.
“Scotty Lago is a great athlete, but with that comes a responsibility of proper conduct, and his involvement in this situation is not acceptable,” said Association President and CEO Bill Marolt in a statement. “Scotty realizes his conduct was inappropriate. He has formally apologized and also made a decision to leave Vancouver today.”
So far, officials have taken no action against the Seabrook, N.H., native.
The photos were published on the TMZ Web site.
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