American figure skater Mariah Bell apparently had a lapse in judgment, according to the Yonhap News Agency. According to reports, prior to the ladies’ short program at the International Skating Union World Figure Skating Championships in Saitama, Japan, the 22-year-old American star is alleged to have intentionally attacked her rival during warm-ups.
Bell is accused of intentionally slicing the left calf of her 16-year-old rival from South Korea, Lim Eun-soo.
“Lim was slowly skating on the edge of the rink after completing her turn,” the representative said, according to the Telegraph. “Mariah Bell, who was scheduled to rehearse after Lim, suddenly kicked and stabbed Lim’s calf with her skate blades.”
“Mariah Bell didn’t apologize to Lim Eun-soo after the incident and instead continued to rehearse for her routine,” the spokesperson continued. “We believe this is not a minor situation that can happen in an official rehearsal.”
“People stop harassing Mariah Bell on ig before all the facts getting cleared out. Those comments are just atrocious and show how vile humans can be,” one user wrote on social media. “Wait for the official statements and then make your judgments. What if it turns out that Mariah is in fact innocent?”
While some claim that it was an accident, others aren’t buying the story.
Despite the incident, Eun-Soo was able to edge out her rival with a personal-best score of 72.91. Eun-Soo finished in fifth-place, just ahead of Bell’s 71.26.