The Duke and Duchess of Sussex were allegedly involved in an hour-long “near-disastrous car chase” with paparazzi. The event is an eerie reminder of the tragic death of Prince Harry’s mother in 1997.
Harry and Meghan feared for their lives in “hour-long car chases” with paparazzi, says a spokesman
Prince Harry And Megan Markle, and Markle’s mother, Dorian Ragland, were reportedly followed by paparazzi on Tuesday night, according to the Independent. The trio had just attended a charity awards ceremony hosted by the Ms. Foundation for Women in New York City, where Meghan was honored.
The event marked the couple’s first public sighting since the coronation of King Charles III.
According to the couple’s spokesman, the Duke and Duchess feared for their lives when six cars chased them and their vehicle “for over two hours”.
“Last night the Duke and Duchess of Sussex and Mrs Ragland were involved in a near catastrophic chase by a group of extremely aggressive paparazzi,” the statement confirmed.
The pursuit reportedly involved several near misses involving other drivers, pedestrians and two NYPD (New York Police Department) officers.
Video taken prior to the alleged chase shows the couple entering and exiting the venue, surrounded by a crowd of photographers.
Meanwhile, images have surfaced on social media of Harry, Meghan and their mother sitting in the back of a cab.
“(This is just) a little insight into the defenses and decoys needed to end the harassment,” the couple’s rep said. “While serving as a public figure involves some interest from the public, it should never come at the expense of anyone’s safety.”
The couple’s rep added that posting these images “encourages an extremely intrusive practice that is dangerous for everyone involved.”
NYPD, Mayor, Photo Agency: The couple’s alleged cab driver downplays the incident
However, the NYPD, which provided a security guard, did not seem to see the situation that way. The department described the incident involving the evening paparazzi incident as “challenging.”
However, the Independent reported that there had been “no reported clashes, summonses, injuries or arrests”.
Meanwhile, New York Mayor Eric Adams called the photographers’ behavior “reckless.” However, it was “hard to believe” that a two-hour high-speed car chase ensued in the city’s notorious traffic jams, he added.
Adams admitted that even “if it’s 10 minutes, a 10-minute chase in New York City is extremely dangerous.”
A man who claimed to be her cab driver told the Washington Post, “It wasn’t like a car chase in a movie.”
Additionally, Backgrid USA, the photo agency accused of stalking the former royal couple, tweeted a lengthy statement refuting their allegations.
News reports from NYC Paparazzi Chase recall the tragic death of Harry’s mother, Princess Diana
Harry’s sensitive reaction to the situation is likely due to the death of his mother, Princess Diana. She was killed in a high-speed chase in Paris in 1997, reports the Independent.
According to the Independent, the vehicle crashed after its driver tried to flee the paparazzi.
In fact, Harry and Meghan both relocated to the United States after stepping down from their royal roles in 2020.
The couple said they left the UK mainly because of the intense media and tabloid harassment.