Justin Bieber must have got the shock of his life Tuesday morning when he woke up to find a Force-10 scale police raid had swooped his Calabasas, California, mansion looking for any kind of evidence to “solidify” or “exonerate” the pop singer after a neighbor accused him of egging his house.
Now it seems the 19-year-old, who was previously not talking to police, is playing ball in the felony vandalism and assault investigation.
“Justin is of course cooperating with the authorities,” a source close to the teen singer tells E! News.“He’s also moving forward and concentrating on work and his new music.”
Despite this business as usual soundbite, a look at the star’s Twitter feed suggests, in reality, the mood at Chez Bieb’s post-police raid is a somewhat subdued one.
Since January 13, just two new tweets have appeared on Justin’s timeline. One of which is a perfunctory retweet of his record company’s push for his latest Journals album. The other is a solitary tweet nod to the seven year milestone since the “Kidrauhl” YouTube account went live on January 15, 2007. Fans are celebrating by trending variations of #7YearsOfKidrauhI.
Incredibly, as of press time Bieber has posted one tweet to note the account that launched his prepubescent talent to fame singing R&B covers by artists such as Justin Timberlake, future mentor Usher, Chris Brown and many more.
— Scooter Braun (@scooterbraun) January 16, 2014
YouTube brought Bieber to the attentions of his manager Scooter Braun. He discovered and steered the embryonic talent to Atlanta, 2009’s chart slayer – “One Time,” “My World,” “My World 2.0,” “Never Say Never,” the mega-grossing same name concert-movie, “Under The Mistletoe,” “Believe” (and acoustic), “Journals,” worldwide fame, success, awards for days, millions of dollars — all the way to today’s unforeseen, PR nightmare nutshelled by the box office clunk of the Believe movie.
No-one seems to quite know exactly how Team Bieber arrived at this critical point.
Much has been written about peaking too soon, going off-brand, over-exposure and over-confidence, although it’s likely at the heart of Bieber’s malaise lies a cluster f%?k of non-confidence in his “constant search for validation.” Throw in a year of headlines that would give even Charlie Sheen pause, the latest egging debale which purportedly caused $20,000 damages; and he is where he is.
Whether Justin’s teen acting out merits the present public and police censure he’s getting is arguable. The now self-propelling open season on the pop prince has been helped along its way by fevered narration, and his own behavior. His track record of [not prosecuted] alleged reckless driving, alleged battery investigations, and more typical complaints about parties in Calabasas alone indicates he isn’t Bambi; but neither is he Charles Manson.
Tell that to Lt. David Thompson of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s department, who gave the order for the epic raid. Not only is he defiant about the reportedly $15,000 to $25,000 taxpayer cost of Tuesday’s search, he thinks the 9 patrol cars, 12 armed detectives, four helicopter, battering ram tooled operation (and a seemingly in place hotline to TMZ), was a tad under.
“I’m being criticized for having too much, but I don’t think I had enough,” Thompson told Fox News, while citing Bieber’s 10,000-square feet measurements, armed bodyguards, and the unknown quantity of his ever-present pals.
Resolutely, he added, “I stand by my decision.”
Thompson also said the ratio of 12 detectives to the seven people found at Bieber’s at 8 am that morning – four or five of them asleep according to E! News’ – were not good “odds.”
The arrest of rapper Xavier (“Lil Za”) Smith, 20, during the raid on suspicion of felony drug possession for MDMA (aka known as “Molly”) and possibly Xanax, found in “plain view” in a location inside the house reportedly used solely by Lil Za, makes for godsend headlines. But since investigators have said it’s “not connected” to Bieber, was the Cecil B. DeMille police raid really necessary?
California-based criminal defense attorney David Wohl thinks not.
“Cops are going to extraordinarily lengths to try to prove what is a relatively minor crime,” he tells FOX411.
“Rest assured if the average person has their house egged, cops will not respond with the felony warrants and a battering ram. This is a frankly embarrassing response by cops who appear to be hell bent on finally making something stick to this Teflon pop star,” he added.
Attorney Leo Terrell of CleartheCourt.com also says the raid was a playing to the gallery move.
“Justin Bieber is not a hard-nose criminal or accused of having a dangerous weapon,” he told Fox News. “Thus, the 11 cops were all for the cameras (sic.)”
In the other corner, Andrew Scott, expert on police practices and procedures and a former chief of the Boca Raton Police Department, told MTV News, the cops went “by the book.”
While Jared Padalecki, Jimmy Kimmel, Joel McHale, and leading Twitter troll Drake Bell have snarked over the egging/Egg-Gate raid, other celebrities such as Kylie Jenner, Kelly Osbourne, and Seth McFarlane have also been making their voices heard.
RT @DamienFahey: The police are searching Justin Bieber’s house for eggs. “Take your time,” said every rape and murder.
— Seth MacFarlane (@SethMacFarlane) January 14, 2014
As it stands, under the felony warrant deputies seized the hard drives containing last week’s security video from Justin’s home surveillance system, to add to the murky neighbor video and photos of egg damage. Police reportedly believe the drives hold the unequivocal key to the great issue of our time: Who egged the egged?
In light of heady speculation about Bieber’s possible deportation or jail time if he’s charged and convicted, a possibly overstated police response to Lil Za’s disagreement with a holding cell phone, and the ongoing pop culture meets legal debate — this single, question arises:
Would the Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office feel compelled to prosecute Bieber simply to justify the raid and spiraling cost?