New York Jets head football coach Rex Ryan told Bethlehem police he was trying “to beat the light” when he apparently caused a minor three-car crash in south Bethlehem during the evening rush hour eight days ago, Bethlehem Police said.
The accident occurred at the intersection of Wyandotte and W. Third streets, just south of the Hill-to-Hill Bridge on Jan. 14 at 6:13 p.m.
One eyewitness and the driver of one of the other two cars in the crash told police they saw a 2013 red Ford Mustang, which Ryan was driving, go through a red light as it traveled west along W. Third Street, police said.
Though police said the investigation into the accident is not complete, the partially redacted accident report city officials released Tuesday said Ryan, a son of former Eagles head coach Buddy Ryan, received a written warning for a red light violation.
However, in an email sent to multiple news organizations after the initial news release was issued, Bethlehem Police Chief Jason Schiffer said there had been no written warning.
According to the accident report, the owner of one of the cars in the crash, a 1995 Mazda, said he had been stopped in the left lane of Wyandotte Street, Route 378, when the light turned green. As he drove into the intersection, he told police, “a Mustang ‘traveling at a high rate of speed’ came up the hill and struck the driver’s side front quarter panel” of his car.
The impact from the collision caused the Mazda to spin into a third vehicle, a 2005 Toyota, that was in the right lane of Wyandotte Street and turning right onto W. Third Street, according to the report. The Toyota sustained moderate damage to the driver’s side, police said.
No one was injured, police said. Police did not release the names of the drivers of the other two vehicles.
An eyewitness who was driving directly behind the Mazda in the left lane of Wyandotte Street told police that he saw the red Mustang go through the light, police said.
A notation on the accident report, with today’s date, said police were waiting for a return telephone call from a second eyewitness.
Ryan “denied that he was speeding but did not deny causing the accident,” the accident report says. His Mustang had moderate damage to the front end, police said.
Though the investigation into the accident is not complete, city police said they were releasing details about the accident today in response to media requests.