New York Daily News‘ Nelson Oliveira gives us a look back at the more notable celebrity arrests that happened this year.
They have plenty of fame, but very little shame.
Celebrities as old as 81 and as young as 27 all made headlines this year for allegedly breaking the law. Their charges ranged from leading climate change protests and being in the country illegally to groping women and sexually abusing underage girls.
These are 10 of the most shocking celebrity arrests in 2019:
Who knew a visit to Sweden could be so rocky?
Harlem-born rapper A$AP Rocky made international headlines last summer after he was jailed and convicted for his role in a street brawl in Stockholm. The case drew the attention of President Trump and New York lawmakers, who denounced the arrest and repeatedly called on him to be freed.
Rocky, whose real name is Rakim Mayers, was held behind bars for a little over a month before he was released. Days later, the hip-hop artist was found guilty of assault, but he escaped any additional jail time and was ordered to pay a $1,300 fine.
Lori Loughlin and Felicity Huffman
Two wealthy TV stars who appeared to have no confidence in their children were caught in the largest college admissions cheating scandal in U.S. history. Actresses Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin were among dozens of parents accused of coughing up thousands of dollars in bribes to ensure their children would get into prestigious universities.
Huffman, known for her role as Lynette Scavo on the ABC series “Desperate Housewives,” ended up spending a measly 11 days in jail after admitting to paying $15,000 to have her daughter’s SAT scores rigged. Loughlin, who played Aunt Becky on the ABC sitcom “Full House,” faces money laundering, bribery and fraud charges. She and her fashion designer husband, Mossimo Giannulli, are accused of paying a whopping $500,000 to get their two daughters admitted to the University of Southern California as fake rowing recruits.
His “Drinkin’ Too Much” song has a whole new meaning.
Country singer Sam Hunt was thrown in jail last month after police in Tennessee said he was driving the wrong way while intoxicated and with open beer containers in his car. Authorities said the 34-year-old musician, who later issued a public apology, showed numerous signs of impairment and could barely retrieve his ID when he was pulled over.
Actor Jussie Smollett’s hate-crime report went viral in early 2019 and sparked an outcry of support — before he became a villain just weeks later. The “Empire” star, who’s gay and black, told Chicago police in January that he was attacked by two men who hurled racial and homophobic slurs at him and placed a rope around his neck.
But the almost-cinematic story quickly crumbled as authorities accused the 37-year-old of staging the attack to drum up publicity and arrested him on multiple felony charges. The prosecutor’s office later dismissed the case, shocking the city of Chicago and leading authorities to file a lawsuit against him to recoup the $130,000 spent on investigating the alleged hate crime — a story Smollett still stands by.
In another bizarre arrest involving a celebrity this year, former “Jackass” star Bam Margera engaged in a standoff with police after allegedly trespassing at luxury Los Angeles hotel. Video of the wild incident shows the 40-year-old sitting on the lobby floor and ranting about being hired by someone to spy on a cheating spouse while an officer patiently tried to get him to leave.
R. Kelly, the once-beloved “I Believe I Can Fly” singer, will end 2019 behind bars after a Lifetime documentary about his long history of repugnant sex assault allegations sparked a litany of charges against him.
The first arrest came in February when Chicago police accused him of sexually abusing four victims as young as 13. Federal prosecutors in New York later charged him with paying off his victims’ families to cover up years of sexual abuse. Authorities say the disgraced R&B superstar also intimidated his victims and demanded they call him “daddy.”
On a much lighter note, here’s someone who was willingly arrested multiple times this year.
Oscar-winning actress Jane Fonda has been arrested at least four times since October and spent one night in jail as part of a newly launched series of climate protests in Washington, D.C. The legendary star’s weekly rallies, which are held on Fridays near the city’s federal buildings, were inspired by young climate activists like Swedish teen Greta Thunberg.
Fonda has brought numerous celebrities to the event and several of them — including actors Sam Waterston and actresses Sally Field and Diane Lane — have been proudly arrested for civil disobedience.
Even immigration authorities went after celebrities this year.
Rapper 21 Savage spent nine days in custody after U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents accused him of overstaying his visa by more than a decade. The British-born artist, whose real name is She’yaa Bin Abraham-Joseph, was later allowed to stay in the U.S. as he awaits a court hearing to resolve his status.
Sadly, one of the most common charges against celebrities in 2019 involved domestic violence.
That was the case for “Jersey Shore” cast member Ronnie Ortiz-Magro, who was charged in October with willful child endangerment, brandishing a weapon, misdemeanor domestic violence and other offenses for allegedly assaulting his girlfriend in California.
Cuba Gooding Jr.
The Oscar-winning star of “Jerry Maguire” and “Men of Honor” faced a flood of allegations this year after he was charged with groping a 29-year-old woman in June at the Magic Hour rooftop bar in midtown Manhattan. As of December, more than 20 women have accused Cuba Gooding Jr. of forcibly kissing, groping or sexually abusing them in multiple states over the years.
In one of the most recent allegations, a woman said the actor got mad when she refused to have drinks with him at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival in Utah. The woman claims Gooding, who denies all the charges, kissed her and pushed his hand into her crotch with such force that she had to bite him to break free, court records show.
Source: New York Daily News