Justin Bieber’s decampment to Panama after an infamous week in Miami capped by a DUI arrest has set the scene for an intervention.
TODAY’s Kathie Lee and Hoda confirm the singer’s mom Pattie Mallette has joined manager Scooter Braun, mentor Usher, Ryan Butler a childhood friend, and forrmer “swagger” coach Ryan Good in Nitro City, a sports resort in Punta Chame, Panama, to be with her son.
Along for the ride in Panama is 21-year-old model Chantel Jeffries — a girl with a less-than-Sunday school past, who rode shotgun with Justin in an rented yellow Lamborghini before his arrest early Thursday morning. Police stopped them and red Ferrari driving pal, Khalil Sharieff, 19, just after 4 am on a residential street in Miami Beach thinking the convoy was preparing to drag race.
The arrest is just the latest shocker along a timeline of dramatic months for Bieber. Now, charges, bonds, an egging-related police raid at his Calabasas, California, home. and a fitting for an orange jumpsuit evidently brought matters to a head.
“It sure looks like an intervention,” TMZ’s Mike Walters said of Mallette, Usher, and Braun and the others in Panama in a phone-in spot on Ryan Seacrest’s radio show Monday.
“His people don’t want to call it that,” Walters told Seacrest frankly. “But his mom, Usher, and Scooter Braun, all of the really important people are there.”
(Photo via Twitter: Braun, Bieber, Usher In Panama)
It’s likely one of the priorities of the summit will be to address Bieber’s alleged drug usage, given that he allegedly told arresting officers he was taking prescription medication, smoked marijuana, and consumed on beer.
Reports alleging the Canadian singer is regularly using drugs increased after his live-in companion Xavier “Lil Za” Smith was arrested for suspected felony drug possession [CNN reports MDMA has been confirmed as one of the drugs found], during the January 14 raid.
TMZ allege Bieber uses sizzurp – a cough syrup containing codeine and promethazine to which soda and candy are typically added.
Mail Online, the Mirror, Perez Hilton, and Radar Online and similar have picked up that baton.
Certainly the pop superstar we’ve all seen wakeboarding and playing various sports out in Panama doesn’t look like any self-respecting zombie we know.
A purportedly recently ejected source from the teen star’s circle alleges he used “sizzurp” at one point but has now stopped.
“Justin got off Lean as soon as TMZ started posting that s**t,” the ex-insider tells TabRag.
“Scooter lost his s**t and made Justin erase everyone [from his iPhone]. I heard from Za that Justin’s two weeks clean on Lean. But nobody is going to stop him from smoking weed.”
In ways that barely need explaining, the tabloid media’s appetite in running increasingly ever more tawdry accounts of Bieber’s supposedly crazy drug use and the constant surveillance of his every waking moment, is more likely to make a stressed out individual reach for anti-depressants or whatever else is around.
A point made at Crushable: “What matters is that Justin Bieber is an actual person, not just a tabloid headline, whose life is spinning out of control. And in those situations, the right thing to do is back off and hope the person gets help,” the site wrote.
Bieber has also commented on the media interest in his struggles.
The day after his arrest, he posted a photograph to Instagram seemingly comparing his media treatment to that of Michael Jackson at an also critical period of his life, when he entered a plea of “not guilty” to child molestation charges in 2004 and danced on top of a SUV as he left the courthouse.
The present prince of pop waved atop an SUV when he left a Miami-Dade county jail on Thursday, captioning it, “What more can they say,”
Usher with a fan in Panama.
Bieber with a fan in Panama.
It is to be hoped Usher, Mallette, Braun, Butler, and Good who were there at the start of the genuinely euphoric “Bieber Fever” ride can help this talented young artist reclaim his life and career.
Resilience will be needed. The UK’s Guardian today wrote of a “determined media deflation,” which mocks and applies pressure to a teenager who appears to be in need of professional treatment and then pretends bafflement when he messes up, has no intention of stepping off the gas.
Footage of Scooter gently asking hysterical fans in Panama not to take snaps or ask for autographs for “just one day” seems to indicate he is still determined to protect and guide Justin.
The question is, will he listen?