Nick Bollea, the 17-year-old son of wrestler Hulk Hogan, was arrested Wednesday morning by police in Clearwater, Florida, for his role in the August street-racing crash that left his passenger critically injured.
According to The Associated Press, Bollea turned himself over to police and was arrested on charges of reckless driving involving serious bodily injury. He was handcuffed and transported to the Pinellas County Jail for processing.
“Because Nick is still a juvenile and has no prior criminal record, we are disappointed that he is being charged as an adult offender,” Hogan family spokesman Adam Handelsman said in a written statement. “However, we are confident that the evidence will demonstrate that this was an accident.”
In addition, Handelsman’s statement attempts to discredit reports that Hogan’s son caused the crash by driving too fast. It claims preliminary expert reports indicate that it was not a high-speed accident, after all.
Bollea was discharged from a hospital in St. Petersburg soon after the August 26 crash. His 22-year-old friend and passenger, John Graziano, wasn’t as fortunate. He suffered a broken skull and has been comatose at Bayfront Medical Center since the accident.
According to police, Bollea, who was featured in VH1’s “Hogan Knows Best” reality series, was driving his Toyota Supra at a high speed in a race against a Dodge Viper when he lost control of the vehicle and slammed into a raised median. The car reportedly flipped over, and the rear of the vehicle collided with a palm tree.
Bollea, according to AP, was further cited for using a motor vehicle in commission of a felony, being under 21 while operating a vehicle with a breath-alcohol level of .02 percent or higher and having illegal window tinting.
“Nick will meet and answer these charges in the appropriate arena, a court of law,” Bollea’s lawyers, Sandy Weinberg Jr. and Kevin Hayslett, said in a statement. According to reports, Hulk Hogan picked his son up from the jail not long after he was transported there.