Two surfers have been charged with misdemeanor battery for allegedly throwing a photographer into the water as he tried to shoot pictures of Matthew McConaughey surfing, prosecutors said Tuesday.
Skylar Peak, 24, and Philip Hildebrand, 30, are accused of confronting several paparazzi who showed up in June on a Malibu beach to take pictures and film McConaughey.
One of the photographers told authorities he was attacked and his camera was thrown in the ocean by the surfers after they demanded he put his camera away. McConaughey was not involved in the scuffle, which was one of a series of high-profile incidents that prompted Malibu and other Los Angeles area officials to seek ways to curb the paparazzi.
Sheriff’s officials have said that despite video of the confrontation being posted online, they struggled to find cooperative witnesses. But on Tuesday a spokeswoman for the Los Angeles district attorney’s office said prosecutors felt they had enough evidence to pursue the case.
Peak and Hildebrand will be arraigned in October.
“We believe that a complete investigation, including looking at the tapes, will show that Skylar defended himself,” said Peak’s publicist, Howard Bragman.
A working phone number could not located for Hildebrand.