Comedian Steve Rannazzisi admits he lied about being in Twin Towers during 9/11

Confronted with evidence that undermined his account, he acknowledged that the story was fiction

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A comedian who claimed he was in the Twin Towers during the attack on 9/11 has admitted that he lied.

Steve Rannazzisi had previously described in elaborate detail how he had been working at Merrill Lynch’s offices on the 54th floor of the south tower when the first plane struck the north tower.

"I was there and then the first tower got hit and we were like, jostled all over the place," he said in an interview in 2009. “I still have those falling dreams."

However the New York Times reports Mr Rannazzisi, star of The League, had in fact been working in New York’s Midtown district at the time, far from the event where almost 3,000 people were killed by al-Qaida terrorists.

Confronted with evidence that undermined his account, he acknowledged that the story was fiction.

"I was not at the Trade Center on that day,” he said in a statement shared on Twitter. “I don’t know why I said this. This was inexcusable. I am truly, truly sorry.

"It was profoundly disrespectful to those who perished and those who lost loved ones. The stupidity and guilt I have felt for many years has not abated. It was an early taste of having a public persona, and I made a terrible mistake."

Mr Rannazzisi’s co-star on The League, Katie Anselton, has defended him on Twitter.

"What Steve Rannazzisi did was super wrong, but if we were all held accountable for lies we told when we were none [sic] of us would be clean.

"I love [Steve] and my heart goes out to him and his family. And my heart goes out to everyone he may have hurt. This sucks all around."

Buffalo Wild Wings, of which Mr Rannazzsi is currently the face in a new advertising campaign, said of the revelation in a statement: “We are disappointed to learn of Steve’s misrepresentations regarding the events of September 11, 2001. We are currently revaluating our relationship with Steve pending a review of all the facts."

Comedy Central also said in a statement to THR, "We just learned about this last night. We are very disappointed to hear about Steve's misrepresentations and are currently determining how we will move forward."