Reports have surfaced that the groundhog dropped by Mayor Bill de Blasio at a February ceremony, apparently died of internal injuries a week after the incident.
Via the New York Post:
Mayor de Blasio has groundhog blood on his hands!
A week after Hizzoner dropped Staten Island Chuck in front of a crowd of spectators on Feb. 2, the winter-weather prognosticator died of internal injuries — and then the coverup began, The Post has learned.
During Staten Island’s own version of the Punxsutawney Phil ceremony, in which a groundhog uses several Doppler weather radars and a degree in meteorology to pinpoint the end of winter, de Blasio had a rough time of it, mishandling the beast known as Charles G. Hogg.
Watch below …
And here we have exclusive footage of Vice-President Joe Biden encouraging Staten Island Chuck to get back in the game…
The Post also reports that there were multiple layers of a cover-up surrounding the incident.
Staten Island Zoo officials went to great lengths to hide the death from the public and keep secret the fact that “Chuck” was actually “Charlotte,” a female imposter, sources said Wednesday.
The zoo told a few Staten Island Zoo supporters, but claimed the groundhog died of natural causes.
The stand-in was found dead in her enclosure at the Staten Island Zoo on Feb. 9 — and a necropsy determined she died from “acute internal injuries,” sources said.
She had fallen nearly 6-feet when the mayor lost his grip during the Groundhog Day photo-op. Sources said her injuries were consistent with a fall.
Prior to the incident, de Blasio had quipped that he hoped to establish a better relationship than Chuck had with the previous mayor.
“Chuck and my predecessor didn’t always get along, let’s be honest about that. But I’m hoping we can start a new day, a new relationship here,” said Mr. de Blasio before the encounter. “I’m reaching out a hand to Chuck and I hope he will consider shaking it rather than doing other things.”
In 2009, Chuck took a bite out of Bloomberg’s finger, drawing blood.
If establishing a better relationship with Chuck meant a painful week-long, internal injury-riddled death, then yea, it went swimmingly.