No charges against Mel Gibson over photographer abuse claim
Published 03/09/2015 | 09:49
Police in Australia say they do not intend to charge Oscar-winning director Mel Gibson over an allegation that he shoved and abused a photographer who snapped pictures of him and his new girlfriend.
Daily Telegraph staff photographer Kristi Miller complained to police about the August 23 altercation with Gibson after he and girlfriend Rosalind Ross were photographed leaving a movie in Paddington, Sydney.
Police said in a statement that the matter was "investigated thoroughly" and, based on the evidence gathered, "no formal action will be taken".
Gibson's Sydney lawyer Christopher Murphy was informed of the police decision and his publicist said: "Mel Gibson has totally denied from the onset these disgraceful allegations."
The actor-director's films include Braveheart, the Lethal Weapon series and recently The Expendables franchise.
The incident happened as Gibson, 59, and Ms Ross, 24, were photographed leaving an Israeli Film Festival screening of Matti Caspi - Confession at the Palace Verona Cinemas.
A statement from Gibson's publicist said: "The police, after speaking to witnesses and reviewing CCTV footage and other evidence, have found there is no substance to the claim."
Ms Miller told Australia's Daily Telegraph she had turned away from Gibson after taking his photo before he shoved her in the back. He then abused her until Ms Ross intervened by grabbing his shoulder, she alleged.
"I thought he was going to punch me in the face," she told the Sydney-based newspaper the day after the incident.
Gibson, who has a history of angry tirades, is in Sydney to direct Second World War drama Hacksaw Ridge.