A 'Relaxed' Ryan Lochte Touches Down in North Carolina with Playboy Playmate While Brazilian Judge Orders His Passport Seized
"They were just talking normally, not laughing, but just normal," an eyewitness tells PEOPLE of Lochte and Reid
Olympic swimmer Ryan Lochte has been spotted on U.S. soil after reports surfaced that a Brazilian judge requested the athlete turn over his passport amid reports that he lied about being held at gunpoint during a night out in Rio while competing at the 2016 Games.
The 32-year-old 12-time Olympian was seen walking through Charlotte Douglas International Airport in North Carolina with Playboy Playmate Kayla Rae Reid around 10:30 a.m. on Wednesday, according to an eyewitness.
Lochte seemed “relaxed” and was wearing tennis shoes and track pants.
“They were just talking normally, not laughing, but just normal,” Janie Sircey, 23, tells PEOPLE. “They didn’t look worried.”
She adds, “His platinum hair was showing, and it’s so in your face, it was very obvious it was him.”
Over the past few months, Reid has shared other glimpses of the pair’s relationship. She also joined Lochte in Rio. Ahead of the swimmer’s birthday earlier this month, she wished him a happy birthday, calling him her “favorite person on the planet.”
Earlier in the week, Lochte claimed that he and three other Team USA swimmers – James Feigen, Gunnar Bentz and Jack Conger – were held at gunpoint after robbers posing as police officers pulled them over in their taxi in Rio. However, police have been unable to find their taxi driver (or any witnesses). In addition, the athletes were unable to provide key details in police interviews, reports Associated Press.
“Judge Keyla Blanc De Cnop, the Special Court of the Fan and Major Events, ordered the dispatch of search warrants and seizures of passports of American swimmers Ryan Lochte and James Feigen,” the judge’s office confirmed in a statement to PEOPLE on Wednesday.
Subsequently, Lochte and Feigen are prohibited from leaving the country of Brazil. But when officials went to the Olympic village, Lochte was already gone.
A U.S. Team source tells PEOPLE that police went to the Olympic village early Wednesday morning to confiscate the swimmers’ passports.
“The entire swim team had moved out already, so they couldn’t take the passports,” the source said. “They don’t believe his version of events, so there will be an inquiry.”
“This was the most high profile incident that has occurred here in Brazil, so the government is really taking it seriously,” the source continued. “The USOC is cooperating fully, of course, but they want to talk to Ryan. They’re not happy at all that this has given Rio a black eye, and they are vowing to get to the bottom of it. It’s a mess right now.”
Feigen remains in Brazil, according to the swimmer’s hometown paper, the San Antonio Express-News.
“I can’t talk right now,” Feigen told the newspaper. “I’m being s—stormed right now. I’m still in Brazil and [an interview] is going to have to wait.”
Jeff Ostrow, Lochte’s lawyer, did not immediately return PEOPLE’s request for comment.
“It doesn’t behoove Ryan and anyone else to make up a story,” he told the AP.
•With reporting by STEVE HELLING