Miley Cyrus's VMA guest wanted by police
The once homeless man 22 year-old Jesse Helt who accepted the Video of the Year award for Miley Cyrus is wanted by police in Oregon.PT0M53S http://www.canberratimes.com.au/action/externalEmbeddedPlayer?id=d-3efr4 620 349 August 28, 2014
Miley Cyrus made headlines on Monday for letting a young homeless man accept her MTV award for video of the year.
The nervous man said his name was Jesse and he was accepting the award on behalf of all American homeless people.
He then asked the crowd to contribute to Cyrus' fundraising campaign, to donate money to a local centre for homeless youth.
Jesse Helt accepting Cyrus's award on behalf of charity organisation My Friend's Place. Photo: Getty Images
However, it turns out 22-year-old Jesse Helt's story isn't completely rosy: he's wanted in Oregon for probation violation.
"He still has an outstanding warrant," Inside Edition was told by an Oregon court official.
Inside Edition managed to obtain court documents showing the young man was arrested in Salem, Oregon in 2010 and charged with attempted burglary and criminal mischief.
Miley Cyrus with her mystery date, Jesse Helt, who is a homeless man from Salem, Oregon. Photo: Getty Images
Helt pleaded guilty to criminal trespassing and was sentenced to probation, which he then allegedly violated.
The court documents say Helt allegedly failed to take a required drug test, used marijuana, breached his curfew and didn't complete his community service.
Cyrus has taken to Twitter to defend her new friend, attacking the media for focusing on Helt's criminal history rather than the issue of youth homelessness.
"People who are homeless have lived hard lives. Jesse included," the pop star tweeted.
"Does looking down upon the homeless help people excuse their inaction?"
Cyrus said she hoped it would start a conversation about how to end youth homelessness.
"The media never fails to disappoint," Cyrus continued.
"You've chosen to go after Jesse instead of covering the issue of youth homelessness."
Cyrus then posted a link to her Prizeo page, where she's offered two VIP tickets to her Brazil Bangerz show as a prize to one of the lucky people who donate to My Friend's Place.
Many celebrities have also taken to Twitter to congratulate Cyrus for supporting a great cause.
Cara Delevingne, Britney Spears, Susan Sarandon and Ariana Grande are just some of the celebrities who've lent their support to the cause.
Grande tweeted: "I [love] u @mileycyrus & your big heart".
Cyrus kept her planned VMA surprise under wraps, only instagramming one picture of herself and her mystery date before the event.
While Helt initially wanted his identity to remain private (he didn't reveal his surname to any reporters at the VMAs), his mother Linda Helt revealed who he was to Oregon Live.
Helt's mother said she was excited about the attention her wannabe model son had received from his VMA appearance, and said he deserved some good luck.
"He was in at the right place at the right time," Linda Helt said, "he needs to be blessed."
The 22-year-old met Cyrus at the Los Angeles homeless youth centre My Friend's Place when she visited last week.
After his VMA appearance, Helt told his mother Cyrus had given him some money and he'd be flying home to visit his family.
"He called me last night at about one o'clock," the 62-year-old said.
"He's going to be travelling to Oregon today."
Helt moved to Los Angeles a few years ago, and planned to become a model.
"He wanted to make it on his own," his mother said.
Linda Helt confirmed to Oregon Live that her son was occasionally without a home.
She said he had to move out of a bad living situation at one stage, which left him with no alternatives.
"He called me and he said, 'Mum, I'm living in a bush,'" she said.