To the surprise of absolutely no one, Italian police have refuted claims that Morrissey was “terrorized” by an officer in Rome. As we suspected, it appears that Moz exaggerated when he was quoted by his nephew in a Facebook post describing the incident, saying he “believed [the officer] was about to shoot [him].”
Here’s the full Morrissey quote:
This was a deliberate act of terror by this Officer, who had no personal identification, but whose Polizia 113 motor-bike had the plate G2458. I had not broken the law or acted suspiciously. The officer unlocked his gun and held it as he screamed into my face. Some people came to my rescue. This happened outside the Nike store, and many people filmed the obviously insane officer. I believe he recognized me and wanted to frighten me. I did not back down even though I believed he was about to shoot me. I urge people to beware of this dangerously aggressive Officer. He might kill you.
According to Italian police, who have shared their side of the story via Italian news site La Repubblica, Morrissey and his nephew were pulled over by an officer after speeding down a one-way street in the wrong direction. As per standard police protocol, the officer asked for identification. It seems Morrissey used this as the backbone for his more dramatic version of events.
Regardless of what happened, the incident has prompted Morrissey to cancel tour dates in Italy. Sorry, Italian Morrissey fans.