An honest man bows his head in the face of the swift knife of justice—and Justin Bieber appears to be an honest man, at least when the judge in question is of the Judy persuasion. According to Judge Judy, courtroom television’s 80-year-old beating heart, the pop star is terrified of her.
“He’s scared to death of me,” the Judge, whose full name is Judy Sheinlin, tells Access Hollywood correspondent Jason Kennedy in a new interview.
Judge Judy says she first instilled fear in Bieber’s heart when the two were neighbors prior to Bieber’s 2014 arrest for driving while under the influence. During that time, Judge Judy offered some admonishing words on Bieber’s behavior.
“It was a period of time before he grew up, when he was foolish, and doing foolish things,” she recalls. “So I must have said something bout it, and then I understood that he was paying the front door people to let them know when I was there, coming and going, so he wouldn’t have to bump into me.”
Although Judge Judy describes it vaguely, the “something” she said (publicly no less) wasn’t exactly supportive. In an interview with CBS News the year of Bieber’s arrest, she didn’t hold back in expressing her embarrassment of and distaste for the then-19-year-old singer.
“Being a celebrity is a gift; you can either treat it reverently, or you can make a fool out of yourself, and he’s doing a very good job of making a fool out of himself,” she said at the time. “And I think it’s sad. Nobody’s going to remember that he was a marginal singer, but they’re going to remember a young kid, who had a chance to have it all, and who is blowing it by acting like a fool.”