Justin Bieber's Arrest Video Will Have Blackouts
Posted by Joseph Lee on 03.04.2014
A decision was made...
Billboard reports that the rest of the police video clips of Justin Bieber after his arrest in January will be made public with "sensitive" parts blacked out to protect his privacy. Miami Dade County Judge William Altfield said two of the five unreleased clips showed Bieber's genitals during a urine test for drugs at the Miami Beach Police Department. Altfield agreed with Bieber's lawyers that it would be an invasion of privacy that was more important than the public's "right to know".
He said: "Mr. Bieber's right to privacy is paramount. He has not lost his right to privacy, and that is what is important here."
Attorneys for The Associated Press and other outlets had suggested the sensitive material get blacked out and released under Florida's open records laws. Most of the footage was released last week, showing Bieber having trouble staying balanced during a sobriety test. He pleaded not guilty to driving under the influence, resisting arrest and driving with an expired license. Bieber and R&B singer Khalil Amir Sharieff were arrested early on January 23. Police said the two were involved with an illegal street drag race between a Lamborghini and a Ferrari. Neither were charged with drag racing.
Bieber's attorney, Roy Black, was happy with the ruling, as were media attorneys. AP attorney Deanna Shullman said they would never show Bieber's genitals and Scott Ponce (representing The Miami Herald and CBS TV stations) said it was about protecting Bieber from random releases on the Internet. He added: "It's more about what someone in the private sector might do."
Black said three clips will be released without being edited. They were shot from an angle that is too far away to tell what's going on. Prosecutors said they will release all five clips in a few days after the changes are made. The Miami Beach Police Department made 18 photos from the arrest public shortly after the arrest, mostly close-ups of his tattoos (a praying Jesus, a grinning joker's face accompanied by the word "love," an Indian chief's head, a Psalms quotation, and more), as well as a full-length picture.
Evidence showed that a Bieber's blood-alcohol content level was below the .02 level for underage drivers. The urine test found traces of marijuana and Xanax. Bieber said he had been smoking before the arrest. A trial date hasn't been set. Altfield set another status conference.