Justin Bieber’s court date to face a charge of DUI and related has been pushed back, a Miami-Dade court spokeswoman informed AFP Thursday.
Bieber was due to stand trial March 3 to answer misdemeanor charges of driving under the influence, resisting arrest, and driving with an expired license during a January 23 incident described by police as a “drag race.” The star pleaded not guilty in writing last month.
The trial date has been canceled while Judge William Altfield reviews jail surveillance videos of Bieber in custody at Miami Beach Police Station, where he was taken after his arrest.
In addition to a negligible amount of alcohol, the teen singer had marijuana and prescription medication for anxiety in his system at the time of his arrest, according to a state attorney’s office-released toxicology report.
Altfield’s review comes after a motion from Bieber’s lawyers to block the release of the jail videos which contains footage of the singer urinating into a cup for a drug test, and content showing him “in various state of undress” revealing “intimate parts” of his body.
The February 6 motion was prompted by Miami Beach Police’s release to the media of one video showing Bieber being patted down by an officer.
In the motion Bieber’s lawyers said the Florida constitution and statutes prevented intimate images from public disclosure, adding that a release of the custodial videos would cause “irreparable harm.”
An opposing motion filed on Tuesday by attorneys representing news media organizations including The Associated Press, CNN, Orlando Sentinel, Miami Herald and others, argued Bieber has no right to privacy under Florida’s Public Records Act.
Under Florida law, criminal investigation evidence including media becomes public record once given to the defense.
In a Thursday public records hearing, at which Bieber’s defense team, media attorneys and Florida’s State representative presented before Judge Altfield, Herald/CBS Miami attorney Scott Ponce said Bieber once posted a photo of his exposed behind and another of himself urinating into a mop bucket in a New York restaurant.
The mop bucket video was, in fact, reportedly filmed by a former friend of the singer and sold to celebrity gossip site TMZ.
“Do you believe that the public has the right to… see Justin Bieber urinating?” the judge asked media attorneys at the hearing.
“I don’t think the public has a right to see his penis,” Ponce replied, adding, “I believe the public has a right to see him standing behind a wall doing what we know is urinating,”
He also said Bieber’s urine test was part of the evidence in the DUI case.
There are reportedly eight unreleased jail videos, amounting to around 10 hours of footage, four clips of which show Bieber urinating at the police station.
Ponce argued that if the singer’s genitalia was visible in the videos, a black bar should be used to block his private parts.
“I find the argument to be insulting and demeaning of the court… to just fuzz out the private parts,” replied Howard Srebnick, one of the singer’s attorney’s, Reuters reported.
At the hearing all the parties agreed Altfield should review the videos in his chambers. He will announce a decision on the motions at a March 4 hearing. Until then, Bieber’s jail videos will continue to be sealed.
A new trial court date will be revealed at future hearing.
Bieber – who is currently in the eye of a legal storm – is charged with assault in Toronto for allegedly attacking a limousine driver, and is waiting to hear if he will be charged in Los Angeles for allegedly throwing eggs at his estranged neighbor’s house.
The pop prince has decamped to Atlanta, Georgia, where he is staying at the spaceship-resembling mansion of record producer Dallas Austin as a guest while he works on his new album.
“Dance rehearsal. Guitar practice. Workouts. Voice strengthening. Studio writing sessions. Always working to get better. Work hard. Be great,” Bieber tweeted Wednesday.
A day later, he wrote, “Out here working hard. Tired. Never stop. Love this music and the craft.”