Witness: Hogan's Son Racing Before Crash

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The Associated Press
Wednesday, August 29, 2007; 1:20 PM

CLEARWATER, Fla. -- A woman said Hulk Hogan's son was racing another car moments before he lost control of his vehicle and crashed into a tree, critically injuring his passenger.

Frances Vitalis, a registered nurse from Plant City, said she saw 17-year-old Nick Bollea's Toyota Supra smash into a median and spin into a palm tree Sunday night. She said the Supra and a Dodge Viper were revving their engines and racing between traffic signals before the crash.

"We knew something was going to happen," said Vitalis, who was riding a motorcycle with a friend behind the cars. "You know that this is a bad situation and these guys are hotdogging."

Bollea's attorney, J. Kevin Hayslett, declined to comment.

Clearwater police spokesman Wayne Shelor also declined to comment on the witness accounts, citing an ongoing investigation. He said detectives have talked to "a number of eyewitnesses." Police so far have said only that excessive speed contributed to the crash.

Shelor issued a statement Wednesday afternoon saying Hulk Hogan "was not driving a car beside or near the one his son, Nick, was driving when it crashed." Shelor said Hogan arrived at the scene minutes after the crash.

Meanwhile, Bollea's passenger, 22-year-old John J. Graziano of Dunedin, remained in critical condition at Bayfront Medical Center, a hospital spokeswoman said.

Bollea appears on VH1's "Hogan Knows Best" with his professional wrestler-father, his mother and sister.


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© 2007 The Associated Press

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