According to reports, the controversial influencer has been charged with “criminal trespass and unlawful assembly,” both of which are misdemeanor charges.
“Our investigation has revealed that [Jake] was present after the protest was declared an unlawful assembly and the rioters were ordered to leave the area by the police. [Jake] also unlawfully entered and remained inside of the mall when it was closed,” The Scottsdale Police Department said in a statement.
For those who missed it, the social media star came under fire after videos posted on Sunday, May 31 by his videographer, Andrew Blue, showed Jake watching as people around him destroyed property and stole things. Although the 23-year-old was not seen participating during the clips, fans were not happy about him being there in the first place.
“To be absolutely clear, neither I nor anyone in our group was engaged in any looting or vandalism,” he wrote on his Instagram Stories afterwards. “For context, we spent the day doing our part to peacefully protest one of the most horrific injustices our country has ever seen, which led to us being tear-gassed for filming the events and brutality that were unfolding in Arizona. We were gassed and forced to keep moving on foot. We filmed everything we saw in an effort to share our experience and bring more attention to the anger felt in every neighborhood we traveled to. We were strictly documenting, not engaging.”
As fans know, George — a 46-year-old, unarmed black man — died in Minneapolis, MN, on May 25, after a police officer knelt on his neck for almost nine minutes. The white officer — Derek Chauvin — did not move even as George repeatedly said “I can’t breathe,” as heard in a video captured by bystanders. The officer has since been arrested and charged with second-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter, while fellow officers Thomas K. Lane, Tou Thao and J. Alexander Kueng — who were also present at the time of the incident — were charged with aiding and abetting murder.
“I do not condone violence, looting or breaking the law,” Jake continued. “However, I understand the anger and frustration that led to the destruction we witnessed, and while it’s not the answer, it’s important that people see it and collectively figure out how to move forward in a healthy way. We are all doing the best we can to be helpful and raise awareness; this is not the time to attack each other, it’s time to join together and evolve.”
“Why he was inside of a mall that was being looted, I have no idea. I talked to him on the phone, he was at a dinner that was next to the mall. It was very unfortunate but very on-brand for Jake Paul to magically be seen at a looting site,” he said in a recent episode of his “Impaulsive” podcast. “Here’s what I will say, and I feel like this goes without saying. While I condemn that he was at a looting site and stuck around long enough for videos to be taken to make it look like he was kinda hanging out, you are a f**king moron if you think my brother was actively participating in looting.”
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