Photo: Gregory Pace/BEImages.
When we read that New York Mayor Bill de Blasio was responsible for the mysterious death of a groundhog, we were more than a little confused. Then, we found out that the Staten Island Zoo attempted to cover up the entire thing. Now, we're completely in awe.
On Thursday, the New York Post reported that the groundhog from last year's Groundhog's Day ceremony died a week after its public appearance from "acute internal injuries." Even worse, it turns out Charles G. Hogg (or Staten Island Chuck, as he's better known) — the groundhog that was supposed to be present for the event — was actually not the one there that fateful day: It was his stunt double, Charlotte. (Chuck bit Mayor Bloomberg in 2009, which is why the zoo made the swap.)
So, what really happened that fateful day? Apparently, the mayor lost his grip while holding a squirmy Charlotte, and she plummeted six feet to hit the ground. Although she was examined immediately after her fall and "revealed no sign of trauma or pain," a week after the incident, the groundhog was found dead in her exhibit at the Staten Island Zoo, the place she called home.
According to the Post, the zoo requested that the mayor's office keep quiet about the death, as well as Charlotte's true identity. And, while there have been many conflicting statements about the timeline of events, a spokesperson for the zoo is sticking to the script. The official statement: "It appears unlikely that the animal’s death is related to the events on Groundhog Day."