March 30, 2007 09:30 AM

Comic Eddie Griffin says his car wreck on Monday was no publicity stunt.

After Griffin crashed a Ferrari into a concrete barrier at a California race track, hoax rumors arose because in a video of the incident, a cameraman standing behind the barrier apparently doesn’t flinch as the car careens toward him.

But Griffin, 38, explained on Thursday’s Jimmy Kimmel Live!: “This nut knew he had the footage of life. This is the kind of nut that worked at CNN and they send to Iraq and he’s over there dodging bullets.”

The comic also said he was mildly injured during the crash – “I have a knot on the head, a nice little bruise here” – but turned down a trip to hospital: “I said, ‘I’ve been in your ambulance before. Y’all charge $700 for oxygen. I said, ‘Did I not walk on two good feet into this ambulance? I’m going to walk right the hell back out of here.'”

His greatest concern at the time, he joked, was his hair. “Everyone was asking me, what I was thinking? Who’s thinking? … Boom. Car up in the air, air bag in face, smoke all in the car. All I’m thinking is, ‘Am I on fire?’ So I kick the door open and step out and I’m checking my hair.

“Because, you know, I didn’t have a helmet on and I’m thinking my hair might be jacked up and they have the cameras out here.”

As word of the crash spread, news helicopters started to hover and panic set in for the comedian. “I’m hiding underneath the tent because I’m in a state of shock and they’re trying to get a shot of me,” Griffin said. “I felt like I was back in the ghetto and the police ‘copter was after me.”

Even worse were the news reports themselves: “The crazy thing is … the newscasters, they’re more concerned with the car! If you watched the news, they were saying, ‘Eddie Griffin wrecked a million-and-a-half-dollar car.’ How about, is Eddie Griffin okay?

“Now my mamma and my children are watching television. At least say I’m okay,” Griffin said. “You can give my mamma a heart attack!”

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