Republican presidential candidate and retired neurosurgeon Dr. Ben Carson joked on Wednesday that he used to run from the police when he was younger, “back in the day before they would shoot you.”
Carson was speaking at the University of New Hampshire, where he joked about throwing rocks at cars.
“Everybody did it,” he said.
Carson went on to say that sometimes the “old people” whose cars had been hit by the rocks would chase them. And sometimes police would be called — answering in unmarked cars.
Police would chase the rock throwers throughout a field, Carson said, until they hopped over a fence.
“They had no idea how adept we were at getting over those fences. I mean full speed ahead, never break stride, leap high into the fence,” Carson said. “Allow the momentum of your feet to swing you over the top, drop down on the other side all in one motion. And laugh at them because they couldn’t do that.”
“Now, that was back in the day before they would shoot you, and then uh,” Carson said, then started laughing.
“I’m just kidding they wouldn’t do that,” Carson added, to some applause from the audience.
Watch Carson’s comments from NBC:
The comment was initially flagged by NBC reporter Alexandra Jaffe in a series of tweets:
Carson jokes about running away from cops as a kid: “That was back in the day before they would shoot you — I’m just kidding,” he laughs
— Alexandra Jaffe (@ajjaffe) September 30, 2015
This post has been updated.