One day after Sandy Springs police said he snatched a news photographer’s $10,000 camera, the bodyguard for pop star Justin Bieber appeared before a Fulton County Magistrate Court judge and was granted $15,000 bond.
Hugo Hesny, who was booked into the Fulton County Jail early Wednesday on a felony robbery charge, appeared before Judge Jessy Lall with attorney Andrew Schwartz for a first appearance.
In addition to granting bond, Lall ordered Hesny to appear March 12 in Fulton County Superior Court.
Less than 24 hours earlier, Hesney was at the Funhouse on Roswell Road with Bieber and his entourage when he allegedly confronted photographer Jason Winslow, according to Capt. Steve Rose with Sandy Springs police.
Winslow, 38, left in his car, Rose said.
“The security guard and driver followed and then stopped the photographer’s car in an adjacent parking lot,” he said in an emailed statement. “The security guard took the camera from the photographer’s car and both men left and drove to the home Bieber is renting.”
An officer stopped a Cadillac Escalade as it pulled in the driveway and saw the camera while interviewing the occupants, Rose said. The camera was recovered, and Hesny, 32, was arrested and charged with felony entering auto, a charge that Rose said was later upgraded by the Fulton County District Attorney’s office to robbery by snatch. It is not clear why the DA’s office modified the charge.
According to a Sandy Springs police incident report, the Escalade was towed to police headquarters, and during a search of the SUV, less than an ounce of marijuana and “two large glass smoking pipes containing suspected marijuana residue” were found inside the vehicle.
Police initially said the driver of the Escalade, Terrance Johnson, was also arrested. Early Wednesday, Rose said in a press release that investigators decided not to charge Johnson, who was a limo service employee contracted to drive one of three Escalades to the Funhouse.
Bieber was not involved in the incident, Rose said.
Tuesday’s incident wasn’t the first time Hesny has been arrested for an alleged encounter with a photographer.
Last June, Hesny was charged with theft and simple battery following an incident in Miami.
“According to investigators, the victim, Jeffery Binion, was standing on the roadway photographing an artist when four males approached him,” according to a June 6 press release from Miami-Dade police.
“One of the subjects, identified as Hugo Hesny, grabbed Binion by the neck and pushed him away,” the release stated. “The other subject then took Binion’s camera, removed the memory card and returned the camera.”