The former Hannah Montana actor Mitchel Musso is claiming that he was the victim in an altercation over the weekend that resulted in his arrest.
Musso, 32, was arrested on Saturday on charges of public intoxication and theft under $100 following a conflict at a motel in his hometown of Rockwall, Texas, TMZ previously reported.
Now the former child actor claims that he was not ‘drunk’ at the time of his arrest, and he also denies having stolen a bag of chips, contrary to what the Rockwall Police Department claimed.
Musso claimed to Entertainment Weekly on Wednesday that it was the clerk of the motel who became belligerent with him, rather than the other way around.
It was previously reported that he was released on a $1,000 bond shortly after being booked.
Fighting back: Mitchel Musso, 32, claims he was unfairly arrested at hotel in Rockwall, Texas, on Saturday. He denied being intoxicated and stealing a bag of chips, as police had accused him of doing; seen in 2018 in Hollywood
Musso, who is best known for playing Oliver Oken opposite star Miley Cyrus on her Disney Channel series Hannah Montana, stated: ‘I was absolutely not drunk or drinking, and there was 100 percent no theft.’
He added that the situation was ‘unfortunate,’ but was ‘a misunderstanding.’
Police officers had originally responded to the SpringHill Suites Dallas Rockwall in response to reports of a ‘disturbance’ from a man who ‘appeared intoxicated.’
Musso allegedly entered the hotel, took a bag of chips from the food concessions area near the front and began to eat from it without paying, according to the local police department’s statement on the matter.
But the actor denied ever opening the bag of chips, and he claimed to Entertainment Weekly that it was the front desk employee who caused the commotion, and not him.
He said the employee appeared ‘extremely disgruntled,’ and he accused them of ‘unhinged behavior’ because they allegedly refused to serve him because he was dressed only in swim trunks.
‘I didn’t know it was illegal not to wear shirts these days,’ he said.
Although many businesses explicitly forbid service to patrons without a shirt or shoes on, it’s also common for hotel guests to move shirtless through the lobby and halls after using pools.
The SpringHill Suites Dallas Rockwall’s website indicates that it has a pool on the premises.
According to Musso, he walked over to the hotel from a nearby docked boat, and he planned to buy some snacks from its convenience store to augment what he and his friends aboard the boat had already consumed.
The other way around: Musso was arrested for allegedly verbally harassing a hotel employee and eating from an unpaid bag of chips, but he claimed he never opened it and that the employee was belligerent toward him; seen in his mugshot from the weekend
No shirt, no service: He said he entered the hotel to buy snacks after coming from a docked boat with friends, and the employee told him to leave due to his lack of a shirt; still from Hannah Montana
The actor and musician said the front desk employee appeared to be ‘agitated from the get go,’ and he claimed they snatched a bag of chips out of his hands.
‘He told me to “get the f*** out,” were the words he used,’ Musso claimed. ‘And that kind of set me off. And he said, “I’m gonna call the police” and I said go for it.’
The police department’s original press release said that Musso became ‘verbally abusive’ after he was allegedly asked to pay by the employee, before he left the hotel.
However, Musso claimed he ‘was the one who was being verbally abused and also harassed.’
‘Someone ripping something out of your hand is not the most polite manners to have in this situation,’ he continued.
A manager at the hotel in question described the situation as ‘sensitive’ to Entertainment Weekly and declined to speak on the specifics of Musso’s allegations.
However, when asked about his claim that it was the employee who harassed him, the manager replied, ‘You know what, he can say whatever he wants to say. That’s his story, that’s fine.’
In his interview, Musso added that the first officers who intercepted him on the scene told him that the hotel would not be pressing charges, only for the situation to apparently change.
‘And then the brigade showed up,’ he said. ‘There was literally, there was 10, 11 cop cars, 20 officers outside surrounding me and that’s when I got scared.’
He continued: ‘I shut my mouth and I just put my hands behind my back because that’s where it was going to begin with, and I let them take me in.’
Police originally said they determined that Musso was intoxicated — though the statement does not detail how that determination was arrived at — and he was subsequently arrested.
After officers looked up his records and found outstanding warrants, he was also charged with for having an expired registration, failure to display a driver’s license and violating a promise to appear.
Musso claimed that it was two unpaid traffic tickets dating from 2019 that were ‘ultimately the reason why they arrested me.’
Keeping quiet: A hotel manager described the situation as ‘sensitive’ and refused to comment on specifics of Musso’s allegations; still from Hannah Montana
Mix up: Musso claimed he was not drunk and said police arrested him because of outstanding traffic warrants, which he claimed were a misunderstanding. He said they were paid off after his arrest; seen in 2018 in Hollywood
He claimed their unpaid status was a simple misunderstanding.
‘I haven’t lived in Rockwall for years and I guess they’d been sending it to my old house there,’ he said. ‘And it had become a warrant and they used it against me. So since then, all of those warrants have been paid and the matter has been resolved.’
‘The truth’s gonna come out,’ Musso continued. ‘I’ve never stolen anything in my life and did not steal any chips nor was I drunk or drunken or drank or inappropriate to anybody inside that hotel.’
He added that he ‘loved’ his hometown, but said it was ‘really really sad that this is what it’s come to.’