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NASCAR's Hailie Deegan said she skipped event after threats against boyfriend

The Truck Series driver said the menacing messages came from a man who had been "catfished by a fake Hailie Deegan account."
Hailie Deegan
Hailie Deegan in the garage area during practice for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Victoria's Voice Foundation 200 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on March 4.Meg Oliphant / Getty Images file

Aspiring NASCAR racer Hallie Deegan said Monday that she skipped a recent event after an obsessed fan, caught in a catfish scheme, threatened to kill her boyfriend.

Deegan passed on last week's Freedom 500 in Bradenton, Florida, apologizing to fans and telling them she had to "deal with something on the personal, safety side."

In a 15-minute YouTube video Monday, Deegan and her boyfriend, race car driver Chase Cabre, explained that an obsessed male fan once sent her an eight-page handwritten letter "stating that he was dating me, in a relationship with me for months and months."

She looked up the man's name and "figured out that he was getting catfished by a fake Hallie Deegan account," said Deegan, who drives in the Camping World Truck Series, NASCAR's third tier, behind the Cup and Xfinity Series.

Deegan, 20, said she has kept an eye on the man's social media accounts and that he is convinced that Cabre is abusive and that she is "practically being held hostage."

"And so this guy ends up getting wrapped in this whole deal believing Chase beats me," Deegan said. "And I would normally not be worried about this, if the fact wasn't this person, this guy, lives near my race shop, near where I live, my home. It makes me uncomfortable. It makes me scared. You shouldn't be scared at your own house."

The situation had been escalating recently, the couple said.

"It pretty much changed a few days ago, when he posted stuff saying he was going to practically come and kill Chase," Deegan said. "And his exact words were not 'going to kill Chase,' but he's going to come and he is going to be the last thing Chase ever sees."

Deegan then posted audio of an altered voice, purportedly that of the obsessed, 36-year-old fan.

The man, via social media, gave Cabre until "sundown" to get out of town or face consequences, the couple said.

"'Chase sun's down. You know what I said. I'm a man of my word,'" Cabre said, quoting the man. "At that point, somebody who lives not, I wouldn't say close, but not too far away, where it wouldn't be impossible. It makes you a little skeptical and worried inside."

Deegan, Cabre and her father, the famed motocross racer Brian Deegan, have tried to tell the fan to back off but to no avail, the couple said.

Deegan has been in contact with police, the FBI and NASCAR security, but she said she doesn’t want the man arrested. She said she fears he would only be slapped on the wrist for making verbal threats and become even more agitated.

The couple said they've decided to stop looking over their shoulders and go back to their normal lives, which means racing Wednesday night at Millbridge Speedway in Salisbury, North Carolina.

"I'm over this. I'm completely over this," Deegan said.

She will get back into Truck Series competition Thursday with the Blue-Emu Maximum Pain Relief 200 at Martinsville Speedway in Virginia, her manager said.

NASCAR spokesman Mike Forde said Tuesday, “We have measures in place to increase her safety on and off the track."

And Cabre added: "We're doing everything in precautionary measures to make it go away and to make everything stop."