Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are not backing down on claims that they were in a near “near-catastrophic” car chase in New York City last week.
According to Us Weekly the pair are “shocked” by the response to reports regarding the incident and claims that they exaggerated the story.
“They insist their account of the car chase was absolutely not exaggerated, and for people to say otherwise is so hurtful and out of line,” an insider told the magazine.
A rep for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex claims that after Markle was honored at the Women of Vision Awards on May 16, they — along with Markle’s mother, Doria Ragland — were recklessly pursued by relentless paparazzi in a chase around Manhattan that was “near-fatal.”
“Last night, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex and Ms. Ragland were involved in a near catastrophic car chase at the hands of a ring of highly aggressive paparazzi,” the pair’s rep said in a statement the following day.
“This relentless pursuit, lasting over two hours, resulted in multiple near collisions involving other drivers on the road, pedestrians and two NYPD officers.
“While being a public figure comes with a level of interest from the public, it should never come at the cost of anyone’s safety.”
However, almost immediately there was backlash regarding the veracity of the story. Even the NYPD pushed back at the language used by their publicist.
“There were numerous photographers that made their transport challenging,” a police spokesperson recalled of the ordeal in a statement. “The Duke and Duchess of Sussex arrived at their destination, and there were no reported collisions, summonses, injuries or arrests in regard.”
The photo agency that had photographers following the couple also denied the allegations.
The View host Whoopi Goldberg also cast doubt that the pair were chased at a high speed.
“… I think people in New York know if it was possible to have car chases in New York, we’d all make it to the theater on time,” she said sarcastically.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s also publicist angrily shot down charges that the chase was a publicity stunt.
“Respectfully, considering the duke’s family history, one would have to think nothing of the couple or anybody associated with them to believe this was any sort of PR stunt,” publicist Ashley Hansen told Page Six, referencing Princess Diana’s fatal car crash with paparazzi in 1997. “Quite frankly, I think that’s abhorrent.”
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