A tweet by legendary skateboarder Tony Hawk on Wednesday put the Virginia State Police in an extremely negative light when he wrote “cop runs over skateboarder … intentionally” and posted incredible video that appears to show a state trooper running over a skateboarder and driving away.
On Thursday, Hawk tweeted a retraction: “I had the wrong info on that cop/skater video; it was NOT intentional (but an apology would still be nice).”
As it turns out, the incident near Virginia Commonwealth University’s campus occurred nine months ago, but the misleading video (shown at the bottom of this post) was posted Wednesday and went viral, thanks to Hawk tweeting it out to his 3.4 million followers, prompting a response from the Virginia State Police.
WWBT, the NBC affiliate in Richmond, Virginia, has the story:
Tim Crawford, the skateboarder who was eating a bagel on the sidewalk when it happened, and the state police both say the video doesn’t show everything. It seems to show the trooper running into the skateboarder on the sidewalk while turning around in the street and then hurriedly driving off.
“The trooper did stop at the scene and followed proper departmental procedures,” the state police said in a written statement, according to WWBT. Emergency personnel treated Crawford for a minor injury at the scene, and the police paid for the medical bill.
Crawford was dumbstruck by the incident, thinking the trooper might have been angry about him skateboarding and was “just going wild or something.”
“All I remember is being back up on my feet,” he told WWBT. “It was pretty quick. I still had the bagel. I didn’t drop it ever.
“It’s like a mistake. It happens. I’m all right with that.
“I don’t really remember getting an apology, but he was concerned about my safety.”
The video serves as just another example of why you shouldn’t believe everything you see on the Internet.
Here’s the YouTube video that was posted Wednesday (warning: extremely strong language):