Fast and Furious star Paul Walker's Nov. 30 death in a fiery crash was not caused by drag racing, investigators have concluded, despite recent indications prompting that suspicion.
As we reported yesterday, investigators received a phone call tip over the weekend claiming that Walker and his driver, Roger Rodas, were engaged in a race with another vehicle when their car collided into a light pole and burst into flames. TMZ additionally noted that the site of the crash, in Valencia, Santa Clarita, is popular for street racing.
But that rumor may have been an overzealous blurring between reality and the plot of the Fast and Furious street-racing franchise, which starred Walker as undercover cop Brian O'Connor. CNN reports that the second-car theory has now been ruled out:
Earlier, Los Angeles County Sheriff's Sgt. Richard Cohen told CNN that authorities received a tip Sunday suggesting that another car was at the scene racing the Porsche when it slammed into a light pole and burst into flames.
But investigators have since ruled out the presence of a second vehicle and the theory that the Porsche was drag racing, a spokesman said Monday afternoon.
An unnamed source also told the New York Daily News that there's "no way" Walker and Rodas were drag racing:
“If someone pulled up and wanted to race, Roger wouldn't even entertain it. It would be ridiculous. It would be like an airplane versus a car,” the source said.
That leaves high speed, along with the infamous difficulty of handling the Porsche in question, as the apparent major factor in the crash. Autopsies on the victims will take place today, as Universal Pictures tries to figure out what will become of the future of the Fast and Furious series.