Prince Harry, his wife Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, and mother, Doria Ragland, were involved in a “near-disastrous” car chase while being followed by paparazzi Tuesday night in New York City, a spokesperson said.
“Last night, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex and Ms. Ragland were involved in a nearly disastrous car chase at the hands of a group of very aggressive paparazzi,” said a statement, calling the chase a “non-stop pursuit” that spanned two days. hours and involved the New York Police Department.
The couple's statement did not specify who was driving their vehicle or where the chase took place, but Meghan was in Midtown Manhattan for the event. Women of Vision awardat the Ziegfeld Ballroom, where he was one of the honorees.
Police Headquarters has not yet received a report. But Mayor Eric Adams told reporters at an unrelated news conference Wednesday morning that he had been told “two of our officers could have been injured” and condemned what happened as “rather reckless and irresponsible.”
“It's clear that the press, the paparazzi, they want to get the right opportunity,” said Mr. Adams. “But public safety must always come first.”
The mayor said he expected to be given an in-depth briefing at a later date, adding, “I would find it hard to believe that there was a two-hour high-speed chase.” But even a 10-minute chase would be “very dangerous in New York City. We have a lot of traffic, a lot of movement, a lot of people using our roads.”
He added that “you shouldn't be speeding anywhere” in the city, and recalled Harry's mother, Princess Diana, who died in 1997 in a crash in Paris while her vehicle was being chased by paparazzi.
“I don't think there are many of us who don't remember how their mother died,” said Mr. Adams, “and it would be terrible to lose an innocent bystander during a chase like this and have something happen to them. as well. I think that's a bit reckless and irresponsible.”
Harry and Meghan have had an uneasy relationship with the paparazzi and several media organizations, and have taken legal action against several British newspapers for invading their privacy. The prince also said that the tabloid media's harassment of his wife reminded him of his mother's experiences.
After Harry and Meghan announced in 2020 that they had decided to “step back” as senior members of the royal family, they lost out on publicly funded security, both in the UK and overseas. The couple later moved to the United States, settling in Montecito, California.
Concerns over personal safety and tabloid reporting have plagued the couple. Harry filed a lawsuit against the government after the UK Home Office refused to allow him to pay for police protection while he and his family were in the country. Last year, a judge in England ruled that parts of tabloid reports about his battle with the government over protection were libelous.
Remy Tumin And Chelsea Rose Marcius reporting contribution.