Don’t ask Justin Bieber about Selena Gomez. It’s a touchy subject.
In fact, Bieber appeared reluctant to answer any questions from an attorney for a photographer who accuses Bieber of ordering a bodyguard to attack him last summer.
Several video clips of the deposition, which a Miami judge ordered in the photographer’s lawsuit against Bieber, were posted Monday on the celebrity news website TMZ. The release comes just days after another Miami judge released video of Bieber giving a urine sample in jail after an arrest on a driving under the influence charge in January. In video from the deposition, Bieber primped and winked to the camera at times, but he was a hostile witness for most of the four hours of questioning by Miami lawyer Mark DiCowden, who represents photographer Jeffrey Binion.
Bieber’s attorney objected when DiCowden asked if he ever dated Gomez. Bieber had a long-term relationship with Gomez, which included many encounters with the paparazzi. “Sounds like you’re trying to harass him,” his lawyer said.
DiCowden followed up by asking Bieber, 20, if he had “ever discussed his feelings about paparazzi with Gomez?””Don’t ask me about her again,” Bieber answered. He wagged a finger at the lawyer, repeating at least six times, “Don’t ask me about her again.”At times Bieber closed his eyes, appearing to tune out the lawyer. “I don’t have to listen to anything you have to say,” Bieber told DiCowden.
He compared the lawyer to journalist Katie Couric. “It seems like a ’60 Minutes’ interview,” Bieber said.
Evidence of Bieber’s reluctance also came when he was asked if he knew “an entertainer by the name of Usher.”
“Yeah, Usher, that sounds familiar,” Bieber answered. He later acknowledged Usher was a close friend, but he downplayed the singer’s role in his career.
“Isn’t it true that Usher was instrumental in starting your career?” DiCowden asked.
“I was found on YouTube,” Bieber replied. “I think that I was detrimental to my own career.”
After prompting from his attorney, Bieber revised his answer to say “instrumental” — not “detrimental.”
Bieber may have been too quick to respond when DiCowden asked him if he had a perscription for the sedative Xanax.
“No, sir,” Bieber replied.
“Give me a chance to object, ok,” his lawyer then whispered to Bieber.
A toxicology report released by Miami Beach police said Xanax was present in Bieber’s system when he was arrested on a DUI charge in January.
Bieber’s combativeness extended toward the court reporter who was transcribing his answers. When she remarked she could not hear Bieber’s whispered answer to a question, he replied, ” ‘Yes’ and ‘no’ are f–king pretty different.”
Lawyers for each side did not immediately respond to CNN request for comment.
Bieber is likely to get more experience dealing with lawyers’ questions in the coming months.
He faces the DUI charge that could go to a trial in Miami as well as an assault charge in Toronto. A Los Angeles prosecutor also is close to a decision in a possible vandalism case over an alleged egg attack on the mansion of a Bieber neighbor in Calabasas, California.