Several media outlets reported early this morning that Pittsburgh Penguins star Sidney Crosby had been arrested in Ottawa. They were wrong.
They were wrong.
The initial report in the Toronto Sun, which has since been taken down, noted that Crosby was driving a rented Porsche and his arrest appeared to be "driving related." According to the same report, Crosby was taken after his arrest to Ottawa police headquarters, were he was booked and had his fingerprints and mug shot taken.
The stories—on the websites of the Sun's papers in both Toronto and Ottawa—were pulled down when it was revealed to be a hoax. The Sun's mobile link, however, is still live.
Penguins confirm, Crosby is in Vail, Colorado training this week.— Darren Dreger (@DarrenDreger) September 3, 2014
Chris Johnston of Sportsnet secured this statement from the team: "The Pittsburgh Penguins have spoken to Sidney Crosby. He is not in Canada, and was not in Canada yesterday."
It's hard to fathom how any legitimate news organization could screw up a story of this magnitude. If Canada's most famous athlete was indeed detained in the nation's capital, there would be an easily traceable paper trail and, presumably, witnesses to attest to the event. To go live with this report without multiple sources, or at least one truly unimpeachable one, defies belief.
"It's a great day for journalism!" -- words not on the wall in the Penguins' dressing room.— Nick Cotsonika (@cotsonika) September 3, 2014
UPDATE: Nearly eight hours after first running the story, the QMI Agency offered this retraction.