PAPARAZZI MEANS "SMALL bug" in Italian. So when does a small bug become a big pest?
Consider the scuffle between actor Robert De Niro and paparazzo Joseph Ligier. Ligier tried to photograph De Niro at New York's Bowery Bar. De Niro allegedly responded by punching the photographer. Ligier slapped De Niro back with criminal charges and a civil suit.
De Niro denied ever hitting Ligier. Ligier said he'd drop all charges if De Niro would cough up $150,000.
Ligier's plans were foiled when a sting operation, in which De Niro participated, helped catch Ligier accepting a bag of cash.
Actor Alec Baldwin had a similar confrontation. As Baldwin and his wife, Kim Basinger, were walking from their car to their house with their two-day-old daughter, Ireland, Alan Zanger attempted to photograph the family. Baldwin was irate that Zanger tried to photograph his baby's homecoming and struck Zanger in the face. Zanger called the police and had Baldwin charged with misdemeanor battery.
What's perpetuating these outbursts between celebrities …