Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV


January 2, 2013

Paparazzo killed after taking shots of Bieber car


After the officer issued the traffic ticket and the Ferrari left, the photographer began to run back across the street to his car when he was struck by a Toyota Highlander, Walton said.

The driver, a 69-year-old Los Angeles woman, had two small grandchildren in the back seat.

It was not immediately clear how fast she was going. The photographer was carried about 30 feet on the hood of her car, Walton said.

"The windshield was smashed in her car and there was glass all over the front seat" but no blood, Walton said.

The motorist was distraught after the crash. She and the children were taken away by her husband.

She was not believed to be at fault for the accident and was unlikely to be cited, police said.

"There were no sidewalks on the street there, there was no crossing place for a pedestrian, there was no reason to expect a pedestrian," Walton said.

The street also was dark and winding, he added.

"It would have been very difficult for her to see him," Walton said.

It was not immediately clear whether the photographer was a freelancer or full-time professional, although he was carrying expensive camera gear and had connections to a photo agency, Walton said.

In the previous incident, photographer Paul Raef was charged in July with reckless driving and also with violating the paparazzi law that set a maximum penalty of six months in jail and a $2,500 fine.

Authorities said Raef was arrested after Bieber was chased in another car on Interstate 101 at speeds up to 80 mph.

However, Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Thomas Rubinson dismissed the paparazzi law charges.

The law was prompted by the experiences of Jennifer Aniston, who provided details to a lawmaker on being unable to drive away after she was surrounded by paparazzi on Pacific Coast Highway.

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