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Photographer Says Alec Baldwin Punched Him Outside Manhattan Marriage License Bureau

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- A trip to apply for a marriage license could lead to criminal charges against actor Alec Baldwin.

The Daily News reported that Marcus Santos was snapping images of the "30 Rock" star and his fiancee, Hilaria Thomas, on Tuesday morning in Manhattan as the couple was leaving the Manhattan Marriage License Bureau. Santos claimed Baldwin shouted "step back" and then pushed and punched him.

Witness Goran Veljic said the incident wasn't pretty.

"He was very mad. He was mad, mad, mad!" Veljic said.

1010 WINS' Carol D'Auria reports


Veljic told CBS 2's Tony Aiello that Santos and another photographer were indeed stepping back.

"I saw, they was, you know, far from him, take pictures, move back, he walked. They don't touch him," Veljic said.

Baldwin's publicist quickly put out a statement about the incident:

"As Alec and his fiancée were leaving City Hall, a 'civilian' walking in front of Alec positioned himself to obstruct the view of a photographer aggressively trying to shoot the couple. The photographer was clearly frustrated, pushed past the bystander and assaulted Alec with his camera. There were no punches thrown, and any subsequent physical contact was simply Alec protecting himself."

Baldwin, 54, is a television and movie star, with interests ranging from classical music to local politics. He's clearly an intelligent guy, but he keeps getting caught up in these unflattering incidents with the media.

After he was kicked off  a plane at Los Angeles International Airport last year, Baldwin pushed CBS 2's Hazel Sanchez out of the way as he exited an American Airlines flight in New York.

"You gotta watch that thing. You're gonna get hurt," Baldwin told Sanchez, as he nudged her and her microphone out of the way after getting off the plane.

In 2007, he was caught on tape dressing down his daughter, uttering the famous phrase, "You are a rude, little pig, okay?"

He sued after an earlier photographer scuffle in 1995.

Baldwin posted on Twitter Tuesday: "A 'photographer' almost hit me in the face with his camera this morning" and also tweeted an anti-gay insult aimed at a Daily News official.

He also said paparazzi should be "waterboarded."

Baldwin was scheduled to appear at the American Heart Association's Heart Ball at the Grand Hyatt Hotel on Tuesday night, but bailed out of all public appearances, including the red carpet, CBS 2's Jessica Schneider said.

"I saw Alec a couple of hours ago. We're at the same hotel. And he didn't mention anything to me," TV talk show legend Larry King said.

Baldwin was touted as the special guest for the gala, but all media was ushered out before his arrival.

Schneider showed King, the master of ceremonies at the Heart Ball, the now-infamous Baldwin photos.

"Alec is obviously pushing the guy away, but I don't see the picture before," King said.

Baldwin even went as far as avoiding all public entrances to the Grand Hyatt. Security officials said he didn't want any run-ins with the media.

"He's always had a problem with photographers," King said. "Sinatra told me a long time ago, the best thing to do is just to smile and walk."

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