It's the biggest pop-culture blowout of the summer: the alleged assault of Perez Hilton by Black Eyed Peas manager Liborio "Polo" Molina in Toronto on Monday morning, and the resulting war of words that has erupted between the celebrity blogger and BEP rapper [artist id="1521450"]Will.I.Am[/artist].
It began with some frantic, early-morning tweets and has grown to encompass multiple response videos, grainy camera-phone footage, the Toronto Police Service, GLAAD, TMZ, "Access Hollywood," every celebrity's Twitter page and finally, some litigious threats from personal attorneys.
To be honest, the events of the past few days happened so fast that even MTV News was getting confused (was Perez's response video a response to Will's response video, or vice versa?), which is why we've created the following timeline with a minute-by-minute account of the whole incident, from the first terrified tweet to the last legal brief.
Monday, 2:34 a.m. ET: Hours after attending Canada's MuchMusic Awards, Perez Hilton takes to his Twitter account, writing, "I'm in shock. I need the police ASAP. Please come to the SoHo Metropolitan Hotel now. Please ... I was assaulted by Will.I.Am of the Black Eyed Peas and his security guards. I am bleeding. Please, I need to file a police report. No joke."
3:47 a.m.: Will.I.Am creates a Twitter account, specifically to deny Hilton's claims. "It isn't cool for someone to blame you and blast you with lies," he writes. "Perez Hilton is a liar."
5:10 a.m.: Will posts a video message on his Dipdive page, denying that he had anything to do with Hilton's assault. He instead speculates that a fan attacked Hilton, after Hilton called Will "a f----t" outside Toronto's Cobra nightclub. Will also says that while the alleged assault was taking place, he was "minding [his] own business waiting for a car and whatnot."
10:18 a.m.: Hilton fires back at Will.I.Am with an emotional, 12-minute video rant, in which he accuses the Black Eyed Peas' manager, Liborio "Polo" Molina, of assaulting him, and calls Will "a f---ing liar" for suggesting that a fan assaulted him. "Will.I.Am is a coward and a disgusting human being for lying," he says. "I'm making this video because I want to make it clear that I would never make up something like this."
Monday afternoon: A second Will.I.Am video begins making the rounds, in which Will once again denies Hilton's claims, and says that the fact that Hilton tweeted about the incident proves that he was looking for attention. "Dude, apparently, you were bleeding outside the club ... and instead of calling the police, you [tweeted] that I assaulted you," Will says. "Sounds like somebody wants mad attention and is not really concerned with his health."
2:15 p.m.: Footage of the altercation appears on TMZ. Though blurry, it shows Hilton shouting an anti-gay slur at two men, whom the Web site identified as Will.I.Am and Molina, while security guards and partygoers look on. Moments later, a scuffle breaks out, and someone can clearly be heard shouting, "You just assaulted Perez Hilton!"
Monday afternoon: Molina turns himself in to Toronto Police in connection with the alleged assault.
9:00 p.m.: The Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation releases a statement to TMZ, chastising Hilton for using an anti-gay slur when taunting Will.I.Am, and urging him to apologize for his actions. "For someone in our own community to use [the slur] to attack another person ... is incredibly dangerous," GLAAD's statement reads. "It legitimizes use of a slur that is often linked to violence against our community. And it sends a message that it is OK to dehumanize people by exploiting anti-gay attitudes."
Tuesday, 8:04 a.m.: Hilton responds to GLAAD's statement with one of his own, telling TMZ that he is "saddened GLAAD chose to victimize me further by criticizing me for how I non-violently dealt with a very scary situation." He also says that he has no plans to apologize for using the slur, and that GLAAD should really be apologizing to him.
2:23 p.m.: Toronto Police formally charge Molina with assault. He is due back at the Old City Hall courthouse on August 5 to answer to the charge. If prosecutors choose to charge him with an "indictable offence," Molina could face up to five years in prison, or, if they opt for a lesser "summary offence," he could serve 18 months.
8:41 p.m.: Hilton posts a statement on his own Web site, calling his use of the anti-gay slur "misguided," but continued to defend his right to employ such language if he feels threatened. "I was in an out-of-the-ordinary situation and used a word that I would not utter under normal circumstances," the statement reads. "My intention — however misguided it may have been — was to stand up for myself and tell this belligerent man that I had enough of his badgering and was not going to continue to let him berate and intimidate me."
Wednesday (June 24), 11:34 a.m.: Hilton's attorney says his client is planning legal action over his assault. "All persons responsible for this cowardly act of physical violence will be sued and held legally responsible for their actions," Bryan J. Freedman said in a statement. "His First Amendment rights will not be infringed upon through fear, intimidation or violence."
1:34 p.m.: GLAAD issues a statement saying that while Hilton took the right step in acknowledging that "words can hurt," he still needs to "take this opportunity to reflect on his use of demeaning and defamatory language against many different communities on PerezHilton.com."
The Black Eyed Peas' manager is due in court August 5 to answer to the assault charge, so stick with MTV News for all updates on the situation between now and then.
What do you think of the ongoing war of words? Are you on Team Perez or Team Will.I.Am? Let us know below.