ABC is increasing security on “Dancing with the Stars” after two protesters ran onto the stage after Ryan Lochte’s performance last Monday.
“They have ramped up security even through rehearsals and for the crew,” a source told Page Six.
The two men who rushed at Lochte were taken down by security, detained and later arrested for criminal trespassing, according to TMZ. (RELATED: Men Rush Stage During Ryan Lochte’s ‘Dancing With The Stars’ Performance)
“It was very scary,” the source told the outlet. “You didn’t know what was going on. Security handled it very poorly.” (RELATED: Michael Moore Defends Ryan Lochte After He Loses $1 Million In Endorsement Deals)
Audience members are also being told to come earlier and plan for a longer wait to get into Television City Studio in Hollywood for Monday’s show.
“This time they’re going to be patting people down,” the source said. “They’ve already sent out a memo saying come an extra hour early. They’re going to lockdown the stage an hour ahead of time.”
Last Monday, viewers saw one of the judges, Carrie Ann Inaba, evaluating Lochte’s performance, then saying “excuse me, excuse me. Hey, back off,” and saw Lochte’s stunned expression while he was waiting to hear what she thought of his performance before ABC cut to a commercial during the live show.
— Brandon Wall (@Walldo) September 13, 2016
Lochte later posted a message on his Instagram account thanking everyone for their support following the incident.
“I want to thank my family, girlfriend, friends and fans for being so supportive of me after the incident on ‘Dancing with the Stars’ Monday night,” Lochte wrote. “When I was asked to do the show, the one thing that I kept hearing was that it was like joining a big family. After Monday’s incident, I now know what that means.”
“I have gotten so much love from everyone on the show, including my partner Cheryl, my fellow competitors, the producers, the security team and its fans,” he added. “I appreciate the opportunity to be a part of the show, and more than ever, I am dedicated to my new family and to working hard to do my best.”