Matthew Newton charged with battery after alleged US assault
Actor Matthew Newton has been arrested in Miami, after allegedly punching a hotel receptionist in the face and resisting arrest, US police say.
The Miami Police Department charged Newton, 35, with simple battery and resist arrest without violence after the alleged assault at the Courtyard Marriott Hotel at 4.51am on April 17.
Defendant then went behind the counter and punched victim in the face with a closed fist and then pushed the victim to the ground.
Surveillance footage of the incident allegedly shows Newton getting into a verbal argument with the man behind the counter, before he gets upset and throws paper off the desk, Miami Police Department spokesman Napier Velazquez said.
Hotel CCTV....Matthew Newton, right, is seen rolling on the floor alongside the hotel clerk, who appears injured in footage released by US police. Photo: Channel Seven
"At some point he punched the clerk in the face," Mr Velazquez said.
Mr Velazquez said Newton told officers the clerk had spat in his face, but that was not seen on the footage.
There were no visible injuries to the hotel clerk, and officers arrested Newton after seeing the CCTV footage about 9am, Mr Velazquez said.
Pointing the finger ... Video footage shows a punch being thrown before the hotel worker, right, walks away from Newton clutching his face. He later collapses on the floor. Photo: Channel Seven
According to the police report, which said there were indications of "alcohol influence", officers were called to the hotel and spoke to the manager.
"... The manager stated [the] defendant approached victim and was angry about a (phone) call being dropped,'' the report said.
"Defendant then threw all the papers [off] the counter.
Newton arrested again ... the complaint and arrest affidavit from US police.
"Defendant then went behind the counter and punched victim in the face with a closed fist and then pushed the victim to the ground."
The report said police went to Newton's room to arrest him.
"We told the defendant he was under arrest and tried to cuff him. Defendant pulled away to not be cuffed.
Arrested in Miami ... a mug shot of actor Matthew Newton after his arrest in the United States on April 7. Photo: Jailbase.com
"We were then able to cuff him. Defendant arrested.''
Mr Velazquez said the video also showed the clerk lying on the floor of the lobby after walking out from behind the desk.
"Mr Newton drops to the ground next to him ... it looks like a bit of a mimicking," he said.
"He rolls over and starts talking into the clerk's ear.
"Then the clerk gets up, leaves. He follows him into the office and then the clerk comes out to pick up his glasses."
Police had originally been called to the hotel soon after the alleged assault, but were confronted with a "he said he said situation" and did not arrest Newton immediately, Mr Velazquez said.
He said Newton was only arrested when police returned to see the CCTV footage.
Newton is no longer in police custody.
Sergeant Freddie Cruz, of the Miami Police, said Newton had been released on a bond and would face court at a later date.
"If convicted of these two crimes he could serve 365 days in jail and could also face a possible fine," Sergeant Cruz said.
Police said they had spoken to the Australian consulate.
This morning, Newton's Australian lawyer Chris Murphy tweeted:
Can't cure mental illness with 'You stop that!'.Bipolar sufferers need patience & support.Matthew Newton has mine.Treatment continues— chris murphy (@chrismurphys) April 23, 2012
It is the second time Newton has been arrested in Miami.
The actor was arrested earlier this month for trespassing property after warning and resisting officers without violence to his person.
At the time, Mr Murphy said Newton was dining with Australians at Mr Moe's Restaurant and Bar and was arrested after he returned to the seating area after being warned to leave.
Mr Murphy said witnesses confirmed alcohol and drugs were not involved, and a non-violent resist was alleged.
At a court appearance in Sydney over a different matter two days later, Mr Murphy told Downing Centre Local Court that Newton, who suffers from bipolar and obsessive compulsive disorder, relocated to the US on the advice of his psychiatrists who said "he would not survive" in Australia.
"My client is hunted like a wounded animal," Mr Murphy said.
- with Paul Millar
* Support is available for anyone who may be distressed by calling Lifeline 131 114, Mensline 1300 789 978, Kids Helpline 1800 551 800.
This reporter is on Twitter @steph_gardiner