Justin Bieber faces misdemeanor vandalism charge in egging case
LOS ANGELES (CNN) — Pop star Justin Bieber will be charged Wednesday with a misdemeanor count of vandalism in connection with a January incident in which he allegedly tossed eggs at his neighbor’s home, the Los Angeles district attorney said.
Sheriff’s investigators had recommended the singer be charged with a felony because the eggs caused an estimated $20,000 in damage to the Calabasas mansion.
Bieber, 20, does not have to appear in court since it is a misdemeanor case, although his lawyer is expected to make an initial appearance on his behalf in a Van Nuys, California, court Wednesday afternoon.
Bieber’s representatives have not yet commented on the announcement by the prosecutor, although his lawyer previously called the incident “a silly prank.”
The vandalism case is what lawyers call a “wobbler,” meaning the district attorney could have prosecuted it as a felony — which would have much more serious consequences for the singer — or as a misdemeanor.
Bieber has since moved from the neighborhood, selling the mansion to Khloe Kardashian.
Bieber’s drunken driving charge in Miami is also still pending, although a source close to that case said talks are under way to reach a plea deal to avoid a trial.
Los Angeles prosecutors decided in June not to pursue charges against Bieber for an incident in which a Los Angeles woman accused him of trying to take her cell phone.
The egging case began when the singer’s neighbor called 911 to report that someone was throwing eggs over a fence from Bieber’s home. Residents of the exclusive community had previously reported several incidents allegedly involving Bieber, including speeding on the residential streets.
Investigators with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department searched Bieber’s home on January 14 for video from Bieber’s security cameras they hoped would show what happened. They later presented prosecutors of video they said supports a vandalism charge against Bieber, an investigator said.
Bieber house guest Lil Za, a rapper whose real name is Xavier Smith, was arrested on a felony drug charge during the raid. Deputies added a vandalism charge when he damaged a jail phone. He later accepted a plea deal for probation.
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