The social media influencer Jake Paul has been charged with criminal trespassing and unlawful assembly after videos appeared to show him participating in a looting at a mall in Scottsdale, Ariz., on Saturday.
Videos of Mr. Paul, a YouTube star with more than 20 million subscribers, at the Scottsdale Fashion Square mall with friends circulated online throughout the weekend after his videographer, Andrew Blue, shared footage of Mr. Paul inside at the time of the looting.
In videos posted to Instagram, Mr. Paul can be seen walking through the mall as looters smash the glass of a Sephora and Swarovski store and bash in car windows around him. One clip appears to show Mr. Paul handling a stolen bottle of vodka.
“Our investigation has revealed that Paul was present after the protest was declared an unlawful assembly and the rioters were ordered to leave the area by the police,” the Scottsdale Police Department said in a statement on Thursday. “Paul also unlawfully entered and remained inside of the mall when it was closed. As a result, Paul has been charged with criminal trespass and unlawful assembly.” Both charges are misdemeanors.
Mr. Paul, 23, is best known for his brash personality and using controversy and internet feuds to court views. He regularly documents his life on social media and travels with a team including a videographer, who captures his escapades for his YouTube channel. In the days after, he has remained adamant that he was present at the mall simply to capture what was going on and potentially use it as content for his YouTube channel.