Rio Olympics: Stray bullet flies into equestrian media center

Sun Aug 7, 2016 1:30am EDT
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By Caroline Stauffer and Daniel Flynn

RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) - A stray bullet cut through the plastic roof of the equestrian media center on Saturday, alarming journalists and underlining concerns about the host city's ability to guarantee security at the world's biggest sporting event.

No one was injured in the incident. The equestrian venue is sited next to a military complex, though police are still trying to discover who fired the bullet and from where, a spokesman for the Rio 2016 organizing committee said.

"It was a stray bullet and has nothing to do with the Games," Mario Andrada said at a news conference, adding that security around the venue had been increased as a precaution.

Defence Minister Raul Jungmann was in the area accompanying the investigation and would return there on Sunday, a spokesman said.

Dozens of police and troops patrolled the streets en route to the equestrian complex. The area was not evacuated.

Some of the world's most expensive animals are housed nearby, and the dressage phase of the eventing competition was being held just a few meters away.

The bullet struck around 1 p.m. local (1600 GMT), when the press room was crowded at the end of a lunch break.

A spokesman for New Zealand's Olympic team said the bullet had fallen close to where the team's press attache was seated.   Continued...

A television cameraman films two holes in the tent that serves as a media center for the Deodoro Olympic Equestrian Center during the first day of competition of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, August 6, 2016. REUTERS/Tony Gentile