04/19/2004 at 01:00 AM EDT
From what sounds like a page ripped right out of the script of the movie "The Usual Suspects" -- which happened to star Kevin Spacey -- the actor on Monday was trying to clear up conflicting reports about an incident that happened to him over the weekend, when he claimed to have been mugged and robbed of his cell phone in a London park.
Spacey, 44, initially told police that he was attacked and robbed in the Geraldine Mary Harmsworth Park in Lambeth, and Scotland Yard has confirmed that a man was treated for a head injury early Saturday in the ER of St. Thomas's Hospital. The Yard also says that a man reported a robbery at 5 a.m. Saturday and subsequently withdrew the allegation.
Speaking on BBC Radio Monday, Spacey, who is fiercely protective of his personal image, tried to clear up the story.
"What actually happened is, I fell for a con," Spacey said. "And I was incredibly embarrassed by it. Some sob story about somebody needing to call their (sic) mother and could they use my phone."
He said the stranger was so convincing that Spacey dialed the number himself, then handed over the phone. "This kid took off and I was so upset I ran after him. I tripped up over my dog, and ended up falling onto the street and hitting my head. And now I'm bleeding relatively profusely -- I'm extremely upset, I feel like the biggest fool that has ever lived."
Spacey confirmed that he went to the police station to report that he had been mugged. "And I'm thinking they are going to run out and find this kid a block later. They take me to the hospital, and they were very kind. That is one of the reasons I went back on Saturday morning to the police station.
"I woke up after a couple of hours' sleep and I thought, there is a difference between assault and theft, and it just wasn't on for me to not come clean about my own level of embarrassment and being humble at the fact that I got taken by the oldest con going."
Spacey expressed his apologies "to the police and any readers and anyone who picks up this story thinking it is true. I'm fine. It is probably good that I got bumped on the head because obviously I wasn't thinking."
He also agreed that some people might be curious as to what he was doing in the park at that hour, and answered: "My doggy had to go."