Justin Bieber was offered a sweetheart plea deal this week by the Florida State Attorney in connection with Bieber’s recent arrest in Miami on DUI, reckless driving, and resisting arrest charges. Bieber was arrested on January 23rd in Miami, Florida in what police have called a “drag racing incident.” At the time of his arrest, the pop star was also found intoxicated, carrying an expired license, and argued with police during the incident, which resulted in his DUI and resisting arrest charges.
The plea deal offered to Justin Bieber would entail the Florida State Attorney dropping the DUI and resisting arrest charges against him, in exchange for Bieber pleading no contest to reckless driving and successfully completing a series of conditions the singer must agree to follow. First, there would be a probationary period during which the pop star must agree to random drug testing anywhere in the world at his own expense. This condition would last between six and nine months, require the singer to submit travel plans to the court, and pay for all drug testing himself. The other conditions of the plea deal require Bieber to complete 40 hours of community service, install an ignition interlock device for three months, attend a DUI panel where families affected by drunk drivers share their stories, and attend alcohol education classes. If the singer agrees to and successfully completes these conditions, the reduced plea would be formally entered into the court record. If Bieber rejects the deal, he would be facing trial and possible jail time if found guilty.
According to sources familiar with the case, Bieber has decided to reject the plea deal because he is fearful of violating probation and would not accept any deal in which it is required. There is also speculation that some of the events surrounding Bieber’s arrest were fabricated. Additionally, several hours of surveillance footage was taken during the pop star’s arrest, detention, and subsequent drug testing that Bieber’s lawyers are vehemently fighting from being released. His lawyers claim the footage includes graphic images of the singer’s genitals and it should not be viewed by the public. However, lawyers from several media outlets have claimed the footage is now public record because, under Florida law, any photos or video involved in a case become public record once turned over to the defense. The judge hearing Bieber’s case has announced he would review the footage and state his decision at a March 4th hearing. In addition, the judge has postponed the singer’s DUI trial scheduled for March 3rd until further notice. Bieber has pleaded not guilty to the charges against him.
Whether Justin Bieber accepts the plea deal or not, the troubled pop star has bitten off more than he can chew. The singer is in a downward spiral and some intervention is needed before he becomes an E! True Hollywood Story or ends up on Celebrity Rehab. While deals are being presented, here is a proposal to consider. Could the Canadians be encouraged to take Bieber off our hands in exchange for another Olympic venue? Is there another damaged Canadian import more in need of deportation than Justin Bieber? There is also the Kick Starter campaign option. It worked for Veronica Mars, why not the Biebs? A crowd funding movement for a Bieber-Free Nation could be started. Of course, there are all those teenagers who kneel at the altar of Justin Bieber. What ever would they do without him? No worries, another Jonas Brother, Simpson Sister, or Miley Cyrus could be right around the corner. The fan girls and guys would be just fine.
Opinion By Leigh Haugh