Justin Bieber has reportedly been recommended for criminal prosecution over battery allegations by Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. The decision on whether he will be charged now rests with the District Attorney’s office.
Previously reported that the Sheriff’s dept. would be recommending prosecution, according to TMZ, they have now done so in a report filed with the L.A County District Attorney’s office on Tuesday (May 7).
The battery allegations first arose when a neighbor at Bieber’s Calabasas, California home claimed the singer spat at and threatened to kill him after he confronted the 19-year-old over alleged reckless driving in the gated community on March 26.
The neighbor, Jeffrey Schwartz, 47 — a father of three and CEO of Mota Motors Inc — says the pop star raced his Ferrari in the residential streets at 8 am that morning allegedly reaching speeds of up to 100mph.
Schwartz claims he walked onto Bieber’s property and yelled, “You can’t drive like this!”
The teen singer allegedly replied, “Get the f–k out of here. I’m gonna f–king kill you,” and then spit in his neighbor’s face.
Schwartz subsequently filed an assault charge against Bieber.
After the alleged incident sources close to the singer’s security team reportedly denied any spitting and threatening occurred but confirmed that an argument took place. Conflicting witness accounts also emerged in the days following.
L.A. County Sheriff’s Department spokesman Steve Whitmore previously told the LA Times:
“The neighbor has complained Mr. Bieber spit on him and made some threats. Mr. Bieber’s people say that it did not happen. Obviously, our detectives will determine what happened and take appropriate action.”
Under California law spitting is considered “unwanted touching” and qualifies as a misdemeanor battery charge.
TMZ reports L.A. County Sheriff’s Dept. officials made their recommendation to prosecute based on previous instances of alleged questionable behavior by the pop star.
The website said sources close to sheriff’s investigators are concerned Bieber is either going to “get his ass kicked” or “someone’s gonna get a $2 million payday” unless he receives counseling for his alleged bad temper.
The sources also reportedly said Sheriff’s officials don’t think the singer should serve jail time and stress that the department is not making an example of him because of his celebrity. The sources add that the department would make the same recommendation for a first time offender with a similar history of alleged past aggressive conduct.
According to TMZ, the L.A County District Attorney’s Office is now reviewing the Sheriff’s Department report and a decision on whether or not to prosecute the Canadian is expected shortly.
The development comes after reports that Dubai law enforcement have issued six speeding fines against Bieber for setting off radars along Sheikh Zayed Road while driving a rented Lamborghini to his second show at the Sevens Stadium on Sunday, May 5.
Khaleej Times reported today that Dubai law enforcement have confirmed the singer incurred speeding violations but quotes a police source as saying:
“Police did not stop the singer or fine him on the spot as reported by some foreign and local media.”
Bieber, who is currently on his Believe world tour, is now in Cape Town, South Africa and is set to perform at the city’s stadium tonight and Johannesburg on May 12.