It’s been nearly two full days sincePrince Harry,Meghan Markleand her mother were, they say,involved in a “near catastrophic car chase” involving paparazzi, and a source tells ET that the Duke of Sussex has not heard from his immediate family.
What’s more, ET has learned that neither Buckingham Palace nor Kensington Palace will be commenting on the couple’s claims of a terrifying car chase in New York City that they say unfolded Tuesday evening.
A source told ET that “since Harry and Meghan have stepped back from royal duties, the palace generally does not comment on their activities.”
In a statement to ET, the couple’s spokesperson said Harry, Meghan and her mother,Doria Ragland, “were involved in a near catastrophic car chase at the hands of a ring of highly aggressive paparazzi.”
“This relentless pursuit, lasting over two hours, resulted in multiple near collisions involving other drivers on the road, pedestrians and two NYPD (New York Police Department) officers,” the statement continued. “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. Dissemination of these images, given the ways in which they were obtained, encourages a highly intrusive practice that is dangerous to all in involved.”
The NYPD would later issue a statement, saying its officers “assisted the private security team protecting the Duke and Duchess of Sussex” and that “there were numerous photographers that made their transport challenging.” Furthermore, the spokesperson said the couple “arrived at their destination and there were no reported collisions, summonses, injuries or arrests in regard.”
The experience immediately conjured up images of Harry’s late mother, Princess Diana, who diedafter a car crash involving paparazzi in Paris, France, onAug. 31, 1997. She was 36.
A New York-based photographer, who did not want to be named but was among the paparazzi following Harry and Meghan’s car on Tuesday, tells ET that it is customary to follow cars with celebrities in NYC, but high-speed chases are not common due to the nature of the city streets and dense traffic.
Additionally, the photographer notes, many paps opt to use bicycles or vespas because they move faster than the cars. The photo agency Backgrid USA later responded to Harry and Meghan’s claims, saying it’s aware of the incident.