Justin Bieber will not be charged over a confrontation with a celebrity photographer due to lack of evidence to support the man's claim that the 18-year-old singer assaulted him, reports say.
In May, the photographer told Los Angeles police that the pop star had punched and kicked him as he was snapping pictures of him and his then-girlfriend Selena Gomez at a shopping mall. He was treated at a hospital after complaining of pain and said that Bieber and Gomez left the area before deputies arrived. The two did not comment.
On Wednesday, prosecutors announced that they will not pursue criminal charges against Bieber, the Associated Press and the Los Angeles Times reported.
"There is no additional corroborative evidence for victim's statement, but there is contradictory evidence," the newspaper quoted Deputy District Attorney Mara Mcilvain as saying. "There is insufficient evidence for proof beyond a reasonable doubt."
The Los Angeles Times also reported that Los Angeles County fire personnel and a Los Angeles County sheriff's deputy examined the photographer and also did not find signs of injury. The man has not commented.
Bieber, one of the most popular celebrities in the world, is constantly followed by paparazzi. In July, he was pulled over for driving over the speed limit on a Los Angeles highway. Bieber had called 911 himself to report that he was being chased by paparazzi.
One of the celebrity photographers pursuing him was weeks later charged with following a vehicle too closely and reckless driving, with the intent to capture pictures for commercial gain and "failing to obey the lawful order of peace officer." The incident marked the first implementation of 2010 legislature that imposes additional penalties on paparazzi driving dangerously in order to obtain photos or videos for commercial gain.
Last week, a Los Angeles judge dismissed two counts of anti-paparazzi charges that were filed against the photographer, saying that the city should have increased penalties for reckless driving instead of targeting photographers, according to KABC Television, OTRC.com's parent company.
Also last week, Bieber was pulled over in Los Angeles again, this time for making an unsafe left turn and was cited for having expired vehicle registration.