Twist, a protege and artist of Lil Wayne, spent the New Year with Bieber in Mexico. The rapper even tweeted a photo of the 2 teens drinking in Mexico, where the legal drinking age is lower.
According to TMZ, the paparazzo was unaware that Twist was driving the Ferrari. The pap was hot on the trail of a money shot — he told a friend he spotted Justin smoking weed while driving.
The photographer, identified by TMZ as Chris Guerra, was reportedly following Bieber “all day” before the tragic accident. Guerra was on assignment for a photo agency when he spotted the 18-year-old singer’s Ferrari pulling into the Four Seasons hotel in Beverly Hills.
Guerra reportedly called a friend and said, “Man, you won’t believe my luck. It’s pretty dead in L.A.. Everybody thinks Justin and Selena are in Mexico, but they’re not.”
The source told TMZ that after 20 minutes Guerra abruptly ended the call, saying the Ferrari was pulling out of the hotel parking lot and he needed to hang up and follow it. Apparently he had no idea Justin was not in the car.
Guerra was struck and killed as he was returning to his vehicle after discovering Bieber was not driving the Ferrari. Police say Guerra was not looking when he ran into the path of a Toyota 4Runner driven by an unidentified woman.
Guerra was pronounced dead at a hospital. The driver was not charged.
The photo agency source told TMZ he believes Guerra was probably “overzealous” during the traffic stop because he believed he was onto an enormous scoop.
Other sources say that Guerra, a former casino employee who took up photography in March, may have called a tip into the CHP that Bieber was driving erratically so he would be pulled over by cops — and Guerra could get his money shot; a photo worth upwards of six figures.
No celebrity photo is worth dying over, but the digital photography era opened the doors for the average Joe to pick up a camera and pursue celebrities for profit. These photographers — known on the streets as hustlers — have no real photography skills or passion for their craft.
The photo hustlers give real paparazzi a bad name by taking risks that place the celebrities and the public in danger.
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