Prince Harry and Meghan Markle Involved in 'Near Catastrophic Car Chase' With Paparazzi

The incident occurred after the couple attended an awards ceremony on Tuesday.

Prince Harry, Meghan Markle, and Meghan's mother, Doria Ragland, were involved in a "near catastrophic car chase" involving paparazzi on Tuesday evening, ET has confirmed. 

"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," a spokesperson for the couple said in a statement to ET on Wednesday.

"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 car chase involved half a dozen blacked out vehicles, driven recklessly by unidentified individuals. Individuals involved were confronted by uniformed police multiple times, but sped off in continued pursuit. Among the traffic violations committed were driving on the sidewalk, running red lights, reversing down a one-way street, driving while photographing and illegally blocking a moving vehicle. 

Harry's mother, Princess Diana, died after a car crash involving paparazzi in Paris, France, on Aug. 31, 1997. She was 36.

Tuesday's harrowing incident occurred after the Duchess of Sussex was honored by Gloria Steinem at the Ms. Foundation Women of Vision Awards at the Ziegfeld Theater in New York City. She attended the event with her husband and mother by her side as she received the received the foundation's Woman of Vision Award, entering and exiting the venue publicly where paparazzi were able to take photos. The trio also posed together happily on the red carpet. 

In a statement shared prior to the event, which marks its 50th anniversary this year, Ms. Foundation president and CEO, Teresa C. Younger, said that honorees would be celebrated for "their many accomplishments and tireless work on behalf of gender and racial equity across the country and the world."

Earlier this year, Prince Harry addressed his mother's death in heartbreaking detail in his book, Spare

Among his numerous revelations, Harry shared that he believed Princess Diana had faked her own death for many years. 

"For a long time. I just refused to accept that she was gone. Part of [it was] she would never do this to us. But also, part of it maybe [felt like] this is all part of a plan," he noted in an interview with Anderson Cooper on 60 Minutes. "For a time [I believed she was alive] and then she would call us, and we would go and join her."

The 38-year-old Duke of Sussex said that it was "many years" before he accepted that his mother had passed away. He spent a lot of time thinking about the crash, and the logistics of the accident. He didn't even see photos of the crash until he was 20. When he did, they were distressing.

"I had huge amounts of hope," he said. "[I was looking mainly for] proof that she was in the car. Proof that she was injured and proof that the very paparazzi that chased her into the tunnel were the ones that were taking photographs of her lying half dead in the back [of the car]. The pictures showed the reflection of a group of photographers taking photographs through the window and the reflection on the window was them."