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Celebs who ruined innocent lives

Is there anything better than a selfie with The Rock? What about an autograph from America's sweetheart, Julia Roberts? For the folks who encounter A-Listers like those two, a celebrity encounter is an exciting experience that will generate the kind of small talk that will have fellow partygoers drooling for years to come. But for others, chance run-ins with a stars have resulted in pain, loss, and in some cases, lifelong regret. While many of the celebs in these situations may have benefited from the shield of fame and fortune in the wake of these real-life-cameos-gone-wrong, others paid a dear price in their own once-charmed life. The normal folks in each of these nightmare scenarios, however, suffered immensely in the shadows of their celebrity rendezvous. With results leading to everything from financial hardship, to physical injuries, to even death, here are the stories of some regular joes who probably wish they'd never encountered one of Hollywood's elite.

Ashley Greene

When the West Hollywood condo of Twilight actress Ashley Greene caught on fire in 2013, most tabloid headlines focused on the death of her dog, Marlo. While that is certainly tragic, the less reported angle of the story was the effect the fire had on Greene's neighbors. The building's doorman, Adrian Mayorga, along with several other tenants, reportedly sued Greene for property damage and health problems associated with the fire, which was caused by an unattended candle in her home, according to TMZ. It seems the neighborhood's beef with the actress began before the blaze. According to TMZ, residents claimed Greene was a disruptive nuisance who threw loud parties. On top of all of that, some tenants griped that Greene failed to reach out to them to apologize or take responsibility for the fire, though her landlord said she was welcome back. In 2016, TMZ reported that Greene reached a settlement with Mayorga for an undisclosed amount.

Matthew Broderick

In 1987, a car that Matthew Broderick was driving in Ireland crashed head-on with another car, killing two people: Anna Gallagher, 30; and her mother, Margaret Doherty, 63. According to the Los Angeles Times, Broderick spent about a month in the hospital for various injuries, but ultimately walked away from the accident with a $175 fine. The initial charge of reckless driving was reduced to careless driving. At the time, the husband of Gallagher referred to the verdict as a "travesty of justice." Fifteen years after the crash, the New York Post reported that Broderick was open to meeting with the family members of the accident victims, who seemed ready to forgive and move on. "He didn't kill my mother and sister deliberately," Martin Doherty told the the Post. "There were strong feelings at the time, but I have since forgiven him and feel no anger toward him." Added a spokesperson for Broderick, "Matthew is willing to meet up with them. There is no ill will — not any sort of anger. The family is seeking some sort of closure." It's unclear why Broderick's spokesman would have made that statement, or if the meeting ever took place, considering Doherty told The Impartial Reporter in 2012 that he had "never ever had any contact [with Broderick] over the years." Still, Doherty reiterated at the time that he had "forgiven what he had done," insisting that he recognized that what happened was "an accident."

Lance Armstrong

Mike Anderson worked for years as Lance Armstrong's personal assistant, bike mechanic, and general gopher under the alleged agreement that after Armstrong was finished competing, he and Armstrong would partner to open a bike shop. But Anderson's dream became a waking nightmare after Armstrong fired him for allegedly questioning a no-questions-asked policy regarding the champion cyclist's controversial performance tactics. Telling his story in a piece for Outside Magazine, Anderson claimed Armstrong backed out of the bike shop agreement after he refused to sign a nondisclosure agreement. That agreement supposedly would have made Anderson financially responsible for a large sum if he "mentioned ever having worked for Armstrong." Anderson claims the cycling icon went on the offensive, allegedly launching a media and legal blitz against Anderson in a supposed attempt to ruin his reputation. Things got so vicious, Anderson said he had to flee to New Zealand to start his life over. Yep, you read that right, this guy supposedly had to move his family to the other side of the world to try to shake off the stink from his association with Armstrong.

Britney Spears

2007 was the year that Britney Spears' odd behavior stopped being a laughing matter. The Disney star-turned-pop princess went through a very public breakdown, ditching rehab and shaving her head in front of the paparazzi. Spears, whose image was meticulously controlled by her record label according to reports, seemed to have finally snapped. It became abundantly clear that she was dealing with some serious mental health issues, the early signs of which had been showing for a few years — at least, according to her legal team. In 2004, Spears shocked the world when she married high school friend Jason Alexander in Las Vegas. She flew Alexander out in a private jet and they decided to hit a local chapel on a whim, sending the singer's team into panic mode. Her manager, Larry Rudolph, arranged for a top Vegas lawyer to draw up annulment papers, which (according to Rolling Stone) stated that Spears "lacked understanding of her actions to the extent that she was incapable of agreeing to the marriage." What did Alexander have to say about that? "Bull***t." According to Alexander, the real problem was the fact that there was no prenup, but he wasn't in it for the money. He told ABC News he was in love with Spears and believed she felt the same. "That was probably the hardest part about it," he said. "I had obviously got my feelings involved." The marriage lasted just 55 hours, and Alexander had to fly back to Louisiana in coach.

Nick Hogan

2007 wasn't a good year for Terry "Hulk Hogan" Bollea. The former wrestler's reality show Hogan Knows Best was canceled, and his son was responsible for a horrendous car crash that caused permanent brain damage to his friend. Nick Bollea (a.k.a Nick Hogan) crashed his Toyota Supra straight into a palm tree while allegedly driving under the influence, leaving his passenger, Iraq war veteran John Graziano, in a "minimally conscious state," the Tampa Bay Times reported. Graziano now needs around-the-clock care from relatives. Eyewitnesses say that Bollea was racing against a Dodge Viper when he lost control of his vehicle. The celebrity scion pleaded no contest to reckless driving with serious bodily injury and spent around six months behind bars. He was granted early probation release in 2012, which came as a double blow to Graziano's mother — she'd just lost another kid in a car accident. "It is typical of the Bollea family to plan something like this around one of the worst tragedies of Debra Graziano's life, the death of her son Mike," her lawyer, George Tragos, said in a statement. Bollea didn't do himself any favors when he started talking about how much money he could make from a "real-ality" show during jail phone calls with his dad, calls that were later released to the public. He revealed that he deeply regrets these words when he appeared on Good Morning America to discuss the accident, though Tragos claimed that Bollea showed no remorse for his actions.

O.J. Simpson

Though O.J. Simpson was acquitted in criminal court of the murders of ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend, Ronald Goldman, Simpson lost a civil suit brought by the Goldman family, which resulted in Simpson owing $33.5 million dollars. Speaking to CNBC 20 years after the criminal trial, Goldman's sister, Kim, said the civil suit was a victory in that a jury found O.J. liable for the murders, but she said the family endured a decades-long battle to get Simpson to pay it. With interest, that award totaled more than $40 million by 2014. "We've collected less than one percent of that," Kim said. The Goldmans did receive a relatively small portion of their award after a bankruptcy judge gave them the rights to a ghost-authored book about the murders, which was titled, If I Did It: Confessions of the Killer. Though O.J. claims he was not involved in the writing of the book, he was paid for it and even conducted a promotional interview in which he recounted a hypothetical narrative of the murder, reported The New York Times in 2007. Simpson was later convicted of armed robbery and sentenced to 33 years in prison. He served nine before being released on parole in 2017, whereupon the Goldman family said they were "very disappointed" with his release, per ABC News. Calling Simpson's nine years behind bars a "reprieve" for the family, both Kim Goldman and her father vowed to continue pursuing the civil settlement against Simpson "to get some satisfaction of justice."

Jenny Jones

When it comes to talk shows, secret admirer segments are usually pretty straightforward. But in a 1995 taping of The Jenny Jones Show that would never make it to air, one big reveal went tragically wrong. A Michigan man named Jonathan Schmitz was invited onto the show to meet his secret admirer, who turned out to be his friend, Scott Amedure. Days after the episode was filmed, Schmitz shot and killed Amedure in his Lake Orion home. He called 911 himself, telling authorities that he had turned a shotgun on Amedure "because he was embarrassed on national television," the Detroit Free Press reported. Schmitz was "sentenced to 25 to 50 years in prison for second-degree murder," but he wasn't the only one in the firing line. Many believed that The Jenny Jones Show played a big part in the tragedy, including Amedure's family, who sued it for negligence. "This is a renegade business," family attorney Geoffrey Fieger said, taking aim at tabloid talk shows in general (via Inside Edition). "These are irresponsible people. These are people beholden, answerable to no one." The Jenny Jones Show was initially ordered to pay the victim's family $25 million, but that ruling was reversed on appeal. Schmitz was released from prison in 2017, a decision that was questioned by Scott Amedure's family. "I'd like to know that he learned something, that he's a changed man, is no longer homophobic and has gotten psychological care," Amedure's brother Frank told the Detroit Free Press.

Val Chmerkovskiy

Dancing With the Stars' Val Chmerkovskiy was sued in early 2016 by a 16-year-old girl with Down syndrome who claimed the professional dancer published and popularized a meme that made fun of her weight and shamed her parents. According to People, the meme featured a photo of the girl, who was 9 or 10 years old at the time, drinking soda with the caption, "Letting your kid become obese should be considered child abuse." The little girl's family said it discovered the mean meme when her sibling saw it on Chmerkovskiy's Facebook page. He has since deleted the post, but the family claims the dancer helped the image go viral. The girl and her family are suing for "defamation, emotional distress and invasion of privacy," People reported. The family is seeking $6 million each from Chmerkovskiy and CBS and $600,000 from the original photographer, who reportedly took the picture at a baseball game in 2008 without the family's knowledge. Chmerkovskiy responded to mass criticism on his Facebook (via People): "I have no desire to discriminate or shame, I just think people should have a little more knowledge and take more responsibility when it comes to their children's diet," he said. When news of the lawsuit broke in January 2016, Chmerkovskiy responded with another dismissive Facebook meme. This one read, "Worry about your character, not your reputation. Your character is who you are. Your reputation is who people think you are." Unless, of course, people think you are a fat girl with bad parents because a celebrity told them so.

Justin Bieber

What's it like to live next door to Justin Bieber? If you answered "horrible, terrifying and life-ruining," you'd be 100 percent correct. At least that's what two former neighbors claimed in a 2015 lawsuit. Jeffrey and Suzanne Schwartz alleged the "Sorry" singer and his bodyguards "repeatedly harassed them and their family, vandalized their house with eggs and threatened them with anti-Semitic remarks," according to CNN. Equally awful were allegations that Bieber spat in Jeffrey's face after Jeffrey told the pop prince he was driving his Ferrari too fast through the streets of their gated community in Calabasas, Calif. As one might surmise from the suit, the Schwartzes have a pretty rough history with Bieber. In 2014, Bieber pleaded no contest to a misdemeanor vandalism charge stemming from an incident in which he allegedly threw a dozen eggs at the Schwartz's mansion, according to CNN. He was ordered to pay $80,900 restitution, stay 100 yards away from the family, and was sentenced to two years' probation. The lawsuit alleged that the Schwartz family was subjected to "constant harassment" by Bieber's "entourage, fans and the media" after the story broke. Bieber sold his mansion to another media-friendly celebrity, Khloe Kardashian, in 2014. Based on what we've seen on Keeping Up With the Kardashians, that could be the worst thing to happen to the Schwartz family yet.

Rebecca Gayheart

As the "Noxema Girl," Rebecca Gayheart rose to fame in the early '90s thanks to her pervasive commercials for the facial cream. The campaign landed her a role in the hit series Beverly Hills, 90210, and Gayheart rode the late '90s slasher film craze by starring in Urban Legends and Scream 2. But her Hollywood star came crashing down on June 13, 2001, when the actress' vehicle struck 9-year-old Jorge Cruz Jr. on his way home from school. According to the police report, several cars had stopped while Cruz crossed the street in front of his home. While approaching the intersection, Gayheart moved left into a turning lane to go around a vehicle and struck the boy. People also reported that police believe Gayheart was allegedly speeding and talking on her cell phone at the time of the accident, which her lawyer denied. Gayheart immediately stopped her vehicle and rushed to the child while screaming for bystanders to call an ambulance. When Cruz died the next day, the distraught actress offered the family $10,000 to cover funeral expenses. The family reportedly accepted the money and also sued Gayheart for wrongful death. According to E! News, the two parties reached an amicable, confidential settlement out of court. Gayheart pleaded no contest to misdemeanor vehicular manslaughter, which earned her three years probation, a one year suspension of her license, and 750 hours of community service.

Mike Tyson

He since has rehabilitated his career and image, but in the early 1990s, Mike Tyson was convicted of sexually assaulting an 18-year-old pageant contestant in Indianapolis. The New York Daily News wrote that "Tyson overpowered and raped her in his hotel room on July 19 during the Indiana Black Expo." Tyson's defense was that he was publicly known to be a crude womanizer, and the accuser "must have known" that he was interested in having sex with her, according to the report. Ten witnesses for the defense, however, testified that Tyson groped contestants and made bawdy comments during a dance rehearsal. Tyson served three years in prison and settled a lawsuit by survivor Desiree Washington in 1995. Despite Tyson's documented history of brutality against women, two of the jurors in his criminal trial came forward in '92 and said they believe Washington lied and was motivated by money. This Los Angeles Times profile of Washington in '95 paints the story of a woman who was broken emotionally, also noting that her parents separated and sold her childhood home after pressures mounted during the Tyson trial.

Tony Stewart

Tony Stewart announced his retirement from NASCAR in January 2016 at age 44 as one of the most successful stock car drivers in history. He also owns a reputation for being one of racing's most emotional personalities, and it was alleged that Stewart's passion contributed to one of the darkest incidents in racing history. Racing at Canandaigua Motorsports Park in upstate New York in August 2014, Stewart struck and killed fellow driver Kevin Ward Jr., who had exited his car after a spinout and was walking among cars on the track. Witnesses say Ward, who was 20 years old, had motioned at Stewart after the spinout, apparently angry for having been knocked out of the race. An autopsy ruled Ward died of blunt force trauma. No charges were filed by law enforcement, and Stewart denied any intent to harm Ward, saying he only saw Ward when it was too late. SB Nation reported that Ward's family holds Stewart responsible and sued him for wrongful death in civil court in 2015. Stewart and the Ward family settled over undisclosed terms in 2018, but Ward's mother Pamela Ward told the Detroit Free Press that they felt "forced to settle" over the prohibitive cost of taking Stewart to trial. She added, "[Stewart] was not held accountable in a criminal case. He basically has never been held responsible at any point. I basically feel our lawyers have let us down." 

Laura Bush

Laura Bush was still trying to come to terms with the fatal car crash that had been haunting her for years when her husband decided to run for president. According to The New York Times, speculation about the mysterious accident was rife during George W. Bush's first campaign. The subject remained a taboo one during his two terms as president, with members of the press reportedly discouraged from asking about it. In 2010, the year after her husband left office, Laura Bush released a book that went into detail about the collision that claimed the life of her schoolmate. In November 1963, a 17-year-old Bush (then Laura Welch) ran a stop sign in her father's Chevy Impala. She and a friend were in a hurry to get to a drive-in theater, and the future First Lady didn't see the approaching Corvair sedan being driven by Michael Dutton Douglas, the local high school's star athlete and, according to some sources, a former flame of Bush. According to the Daily Beast, Bush was traveling at 50mph, and the impact was devastating. Douglas' smaller, lighter car ended up some 50 feet from the road, and his neck was broken. "I lost my faith that November, lost it for many, many years," Bush revealed in Spoken From the Heart. "It was the first time that I had prayed to God for something... The only answer was the sound of Mrs. Douglas' sobs on the other side of that thin emergency room curtain."

Aaron Hernandez

Landscaper Odin Lloyd was killed because he knew too much about the alleged dark side of New England Patriots star Aaron Hernandez, prosecutors said. A jury sentenced the NFL pro to life behind bars without parole in 2015 for allegedly orchestrating and covering up Lloyd's murder. Hernandez said he "didn't take pleasure" in Odin's death, yet he was reportedly smiling at times during his trial. In her victim statement, Odin Lloyd's mother, Ursula Ward, called her son "the 'backbone' of the family," according to Sports Illustrated. "I feel like I want to go into the hole with my son Odin," she continued, adding, "I will never hear him say, 'Mom, you're so beautiful.' I miss my baby boy Odin so much, but I know I'm going to see him again someday." In June 2013, police brought in Hernandez for questioning after finding Lloyd's body less than a mile from Hernandez's home in Massachusetts. Lloyd was his fiancee's sister's boyfriend and reportedly had knowledge of other crimes prosecutors claim Hernandez committed, including the double homicide in 2012 of Daniel de Abreu and Safiro Furtado. Hernandez was found not guilty of double homicide in April 2017, but committed suicide by hanging himself while incarcerated shortly thereafter. If you or someone you know is having suicidal thoughts, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or text HOME to the Crisis Text Line at 741741.

Phil Spector

As one of the most influential figures in entertainment history, Phil Spector became famous in the 1960s for creating the Wall of Sound and producing legendary pop music acts such as the Ronettes, the Crystals, the Righteous Brothers, and the Beatles, including John Lennon and George Harrison as individuals. His influence, music experts have said, carries well beyond those collaborations. After spending many decades away from public scrutiny, Spector became infamous for the death of actress Lana Clarkson in 2003. Authorities found Clarkson dead at Spector's mansion in Alhambra, Calif. She was slumped in a chair in the foyer having sustained a fatal gunshot wound through the roof of her mouth. She was 40 years old. After a mistrial, in 2009 he was sentenced to the maximum 19 years-to-life for Clarkson's murder. He is eligible for parole in 2028, when he would be 88 years old. Prosecutor Truc Do called Spector "a very dangerous man" who had "a history of playing Russian roulette with women — six women. Lana just happened to be the sixth." In reading a statement on behalf of her family, Clarkson's mother said, "All of our plans together are destroyed. Now, I can only visit her at the cemetery."

Brandy Norwood

In 2006, actress and R&B star Brandy Norwood was involved in a fatal car accident on a Los Angeles freeway. "Brandy Norwood rear-ended a vehicle, causing that vehicle to subsequently impact the vehicle in front and lose control and swerve in a north-westerly direction across all lanes, where it was broadsided," California Highway Patrolman Leland Tang confirmed. Norwood came away from the collision unscathed, but 38-year-old mother of two Awatef Aboudihaj was fatally wounded. She died from her injuries a day later. There were no drugs or alcohol in the singer's system, according to reports. No criminal charges were brought against her, but she was hit with several civil lawsuits worth millions of dollars. In one countersuit, she claimed that another driver had caused the crash, however this didn't tally with an eyewitness report. Speaking to TMZ, the man who was behind Norwood in traffic at the time of the accident claimed that she admitted guilt there and then. "She got upset, talking about how it was all her fault," the witness said. "Being involved in something that tragic... I couldn't believe it," Norwood told Oprah Winfrey in 2014. "I don't think that's something I could ever get over or ever truly understand, but that was one of the worst times in my life." The 11-time Grammy nominee used faith to help her cope in the aftermath of the accident. "I realized that God is real. Because ... I had no one else to turn to."

Vince Neil

As lead singer of metal legends Motley Crue, Vince Neil was getting national attention after the band played the US Festival in 1983 and opened for Ozzy Osbourne on tour, when Neil's reckless personal actions took one life and threatened to ruin many others. In December 1984, the Los Angeles Times reported, Neil caused an automobile accident that claimed the life of his friend Nicholas "Razzle" Dingley of the band Hanoi Rocks, and severely injured two others in the second car involved. Neil, who was charged with vehicular manslaughter and DUI, served only a portion of the 30-day sentence given in 1985. He also paid a total of $3 million to the victims, saying later that, "I bought my way out of jail." With Dingley in the passenger seat, Neil was driving home from a liquor store in Redondo Beach, Calif. when he collided head-on with a Volkswagen. Driver Daniel Smithers, 20, and passenger Lisa Hogan, 18, sustained severe head injuries. Investigators said Neil, who sustained only minor injuries, had a blood-alcohol count of .17 (.10 was the legal limit), according to the Los Angeles Times. Neil's reputation recovered, Motley Crue's popularity skyrocketed, and the band made it a point to come out publicly against driving while drunk. Neil, however, has had other brushes with the law including additional arrests for DUI.

Ray Lewis

Retired NFL star Ray Lewis remains the only person convicted in relation to the deaths in January 2000 of two men killed during a fight outside of an Atlanta nightclub. Originally charged with two counts of murder, Lewis copped a plea bargain for obstruction of justice for his role in the knifing deaths of Richard Lollar and Jacinth Baker. In exchange for testifying against two of his friends also involved in the fight, Lewis received one year of probation, The Baltimore Sun reported. The NFL fined Lewis $250,000, but he was not suspended from any Baltimore Ravens games. His friends Joseph Sweeting and Reginald Oakley, saying they acted in self-defense, were found not guilty. Lewis maintains he was only trying to break up a fight, though he admitted to lying to police and making false statements about the incident after he fled the scene. Witness testimony at the trial said Lewis told other passengers in a getaway limo to "keep their mouths shut," according to USA Today. In 2004, Lewis settled a civil suit for at least $1 million. He claimed the settlement was not an admission of guilt, but an expression of love and sympathy. For the most part, Lewis rehabilitated his reputation and put together a Hall of Fame-caliber career until retiring in 2013. Cindy Lollar-Owens, Richard Lollar's aunt, told USA Today in 2013 that news of Lewis' retirement prompted her "to visit the funeral home, 'because that's where my nephew retired.'"

John Landis

John Landis, the director responsible for films such as Blues Brothers, Animal House, Trading Places and Coming to America, nearly had his career ended at its height in 1982 when star Vic Morrow and two child actors were killed in an accident while filming the Twilight Zone movie. A helicopter careened out of control after a special-effects mishap, crushing one actor and decapitating the others. A jury found Landis and other filmmakers not guilty of involuntary manslaughter in 1987, though Landis admitted on the stand that he violated labor laws when he illegally hired child actors, 7-year-old Myca Dinh Lee and 6-year-old Renee Chen, according to the Los Angeles Times. Further, a book about the trial alleged Landis to be reckless and dangerous on the set, and that prosecutors messed up by not charging Landis and others with violating child labor laws. Landis also paid $2 million to each of the children's families to settle civil actions, the Los Angeles Times reported not long after the criminal trial ended. Morrow's children, who included actor Jennifer Jason Leigh, agreed to an earlier settlement shortly after the accident. Morrow was also known for starring in the TV series Combat!, along with roles in the Bad News Bears and Blackboard Jungle.

Charlie Sheen

It is easy to consider the harm he has done to himself over the years, but what about all of the others that actor Charlie Sheen has put in harm's way because of his own reckless actions? Sheen did a noble thing in November 2015 when he revealed himself to be HIV positive on NBC's Today show. Sheen said he had been living with an HIV diagnosis for about four years, and had paid upward of $10 million in hush money to various alleged blackmailers in order to keep it a secret from the public. However, he also kept the secret from many of his sexual partners, and while Sheen has maintained that precautions were taken, for him to keep partners in the dark about his own status was dangerous to them and damning to Sheen's character. Radar Online reported that a woman who claims to be Sheen's madam said he could have put as many as 20 prostitutes at risk because of his behavior. The madam said she had been in contact with several panic-stricken sex workers uncertain about their health status thanks to Sheen, and that he lied about disclosing he had HIV to his partners. "He could have privately called and told the partners that he had HIV or he could have told me at some point and given me the opportunity to make an educated decision from a point of full disclosure as to whether or not I wanted to do business with him!" the anonymous madam told the tab. It should also be noted that Sheen reportedly preferred wearing lambskin condoms, according to ex-girlfriend Bree Olson. Lambskin condoms, while good for helping to prevent pregnancy, are notoriously much less reliable than latex in the prevention of sexually transmitted diseases.

Caitlyn Jenner

On Feb. 7, 2015, just a few short months before her monumental coming out, Caitlyn Jenner was involved in a fatal accident on the Pacific Coast Highway that left a woman dead. According to reports, 70-year-old Kimberly Howe was driving her Lexus sedan when a Prius driven by Jessica Steindorff suddenly stopped. Howe hit her brakes, only to be rear-ended by Jenner's Escalade. Howe's Lexus was pushed into oncoming traffic, and she was killed on impact when her vehicle was struck by a Hummer, according to CBS News. Jenner did not face charges. In court documents (via People,) the Los Angeles district attorney said there was not enough evidence to prove that her "conduct was unreasonable" behind the wheel, but the former Olympic gold medalist was slapped with three separate lawsuits. Jenner settled with Steindorff in December 2015, and a month later, she settled with the step-children of the deceased Howe, according to TMZ. A third lawsuit from the family who was driving the Hummer, resulted in Jenner eventually agreeing to pay an $800,000 settlement to them in 2018. Jenner has expressed her "heartfelt and deepest sympathies" to the victim's family. The reality star blamed the paparazzi for distracting her in the moments leading up to the fatal crash and filed a lawsuit claiming she was being stalked at the time of the crash, according to E! News.

Mark Wahlberg

Before he rose to fame, Mark Wahlberg was a notable delinquent on the streets of Boston. In 1986, the future Funky Bunch rapper was slapped with a civil rights injunction after two separate incidents of hurling rocks and racial epithets at an African-American schoolboy. The injunction warned Wahlberg that if he racially harassed someone again, he'd go to jail, according to the assistant attorney general who prosecuted Wahlberg for doing exactly that. On April 8, 1998, Thanh Lam was getting out of his car when Wahlberg approached him while carrying a large wooden stick. According to the police report, Wahlberg called Lam a "Vietnam f***ing s**t" before knocking him unconscious with the stick. When Wahlberg was arrested later that night and brought back to the scene, he boasted to police, "You don't have to let [Lam] identify me, I'll tell you now that's the motherf***er whose head I split open." It doesn't end there. Somehow, Wahlberg fled the scene and attacked another Vietnamese man, Hoa Trinh, by punching him in the eye. After the police caught him again, Wahlberg reportedly made several racial slurs about his victims. In 2014, Wahlberg requested a pardon for his criminal behavior, but later, dropped the request after it spurred unwanted media attention about his past. In 2016, he expressed regret for applying for the pardon, but it did give him an opportunity to meet and apologize to one of his victims, according to The Wrap.