NEW YORK — The manager for teen pop sensation Justin Bieber surrendered to police Wednesday in connection with a fan frenzy last year at a mall in Long Island that sent five people to the hospital with minor injuries.
Scott “Scooter” Braun, awaits arraignment on charges of reckless endangerment and criminal nuisance. His lawyer said he will plead not guilty.
His arrest stems from a planned appearance in November by the 16-year-old Bieber at Roosevelt Field Mall.
When the crowd of 3,000 became unruly, Nassau County police canceled the event. But some fans refused to leave, crowding the narrow area outside the clothing store where Bieber was scheduled to sign autographs. Five people were taken to hospitals with minor injuries.
According to a release from the district attorney, police efforts were hindered by a message from Bieber’s Twitter account to fans stating: “On my way to Roosevelt Field Mall in Long Island, NY to sign and meet fans! I’m pumped. See u there.”
The release said police asked James Roppo, a senior vice president of Island Def Jam Records, to send out a tweet telling fans that the event was canceled. Island Def Jam employees also contacted Braun to send out the tweet. An hour later, no tweet was sent and the crowd remained.
Roppo was arrested for not cooperating with attempts to break up the crowd. He was charged with a series of misdemeanors, including endangering the welfare of children and obstructing governmental administration. His case is pending.
When police called Braun, he told them he “was in a meeting in Manhattan without access to a computer,” according to the district attorney. When told that he would be arrested, he asked police to make sure they spelled his name right on the warrant, the release said.
Braun sent two tweets 1 1/2 hours later about three minutes apart, once Roppo called him after being placed under arrest, according to the district attorney. The crowd dispersed within 15 minutes. Bieber never made it inside the mall.
Ravi Batra, Braun’s lawyer, said his client responded promptly to the police request, finding a computer and sending the tweets in seven minutes. He is hoping the district attorney reopens the investigation.
The 28-year-old Braun faces up to a year in jail if convicted.
Bieber caught the attention of the music industry after he began posting videos of himself singing on YouTube. His album “My World 2.0” with the hit song “Baby” was released Tuesday.
A spokesman for the DA’s office said the timing of the manager’s arrest with the album release was a coincidence.