Celebrity photog Jason Nicholas tells E! News that last Friday, as he was waiting for Kylie Minogue outside the London Hotel in New York, he stumbled instead upon Bieber.
As Bieber headed out of the hotel, Nicholas says he tried to snap a photo. That's when the bodyguard stepped in, and, per Nicholas, got too overprotective, sending the shooter to the hospital.
"I had been taking pics for Black Friday shopping when I got a tip Kylie was at the hotel," Nicholas tells us. "But then I see Bieber's driver...and I figure he's there and coming out soon [Bieber had a book signing at a nearby Barnes & Noble], so I wait by the entrance, but off to the side. There wasn't much happening, I see a couple of fans off to the side waiting for his autograph and one other photog."
Nicholas says that he was acting like " a gentleman" standing quietly and doing "nothing out of the ordinary."
"Bieber comes out with a small group, two bodyguards, one handler and one other person. Without blocking the door I stuck my camera out with my arm and shot him."
Nicholas alleges at that point one of the bodyguards "snapped."
"He shoved me up against the SUV," Nicholas claims. "He was super aggressive and it happened right in front of Bieber, who got right in the car, but I got some usable pics out of it."
Then the oddest thing happened, says Nicholas.
"When Bieber got into the car, he put his mouth to the glass and let out a roar, like a primal scream, with his mouth wide open, it was so odd," he tells E! News.
Nicolas says he immediately began to feel some back pain, so an ambulance was called and he was carted off to New York Presbyterian Weill-Cornell Hospital, where he was diagnosed with a strained muscle and released later that day.
Nicholas, 40, filed an assault report against the bodyguard with the NYPD today.
Calls to Bieber's rep seeking comment were not immediately returned. The singer, who released a PSA last week taking a stand against bullies, is currently in Paris, nursing a cold.
Nicholas says he has talked to a lawyer but as of yet doesn't plan a lawsuit against Bieber; however, the photographer wants to make a point.
"I just want to stress, for the record, that everyone, paparazzi included, should have the right to come home from work at the end of the day in one piece."