In Brief

Lance Armstrong 'let girlfriend take blame' for car crash

Shamed cyclist's partner lied to police and said she was behind wheel in December accident

Disgraced cyclist Lance Armstrong has been charged with crashing into two parked cars after his girlfriend admitted she had lied to police when she said she had been driving, says the Denver Post.

The incident took place in the ski resort of Aspen, Colorado, in December. The 43-year-old and his partner Anna Hansen were driving home from a fundraising event at an art museum when their 4x4 hit two parked cars.

Police say a resident heard the crash and called police. In the meantime, Armstrong's vehicle had carried on round the corner and stopped. Hansen ran back round through the snow in high heels and spoke to the resident, apologising.

The witness said Hansen told him: "I'm Anna. We're the Armstrongs, my husband's Lance. He was just driving maybe too fast around the corner or something." She insisted they would "pay for everything" and left her details.

When police spoke to her later, however, the 33-year-old said her former Tour de France winner husband had had "a little bit to drink" so she had been driving.

Police checked with the hotel which said Armstrong had left behind the wheel. When Hansen was confronted, she admitted lying and said the pair had decided between them that she would take responsibility to avoid the bad publicity.

Now Armstrong, who was stripped of his seven Tour de France titles and banned for life from cycle racing in 2012 after he admitted doping, has been charged with failing to report an accident and with driving too fast.

The Post says he could face 90 days in jail or a fine of between $150 and $300 (£100 to £200) for the first charge and a fine between $15 (£10) and $100 (£65) for the second.

Hansen will not face charges as she eventually told the truth and Aspen police have a policy of not pursuing such misdemeanours for fear of discouraging other witnesses from coming forward, says The Guardian.

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