Britney Spears' Song "Criminal" Is Climbing the Charts After Justin Timberlake's DWI Arrest

Oh, no...

Justin Timberlake mugshot
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Britney Spears is finding new chart success right now, and it's not because she's released new music (or another memoir).

According to People, the singer's 2011 hit "Criminal" was at No. 68 on the iTunes pop charts in the hours after news broke that her ex Justin Timberlake had been arrested on a DWI charge.

This came after Spears' fans encouraged one another on social media to stream and buy the song to show Timberlake where their allegiance lied.

Because of their efforts, "Criminal" apparently also hit the top 10 on iTunes Brazil, and No. 1 on iTunes Mexico.

Timberlake was arrested in the Hamptons on June 18, with a police document showing that he had driven through a stop sign and hadn't stayed on the right side of the road.

BBC News reports that the police said the Friends With Benefits actor's eyes were "bloodshot and glassy" and that a "strong odor of an alcoholic beverage was emanating from his breath."

Timberlake allegedly told the officer who stopped his car, "I had one martini and I followed my friends home."

An anonymous source claimed that Timberlake was "wasted" while at the American Hotel in Sag Harbor. "At one point, just before closing, somebody got up to go to the bathroom and left his drink on the table," they told the New York Post. "When [the man] came back, [Timberlake] was drinking his drink. The guy goes, 'Justin, that’s my drink!'"

A lawyer for Timberlake told CBS News that he "will vigorously defend his client and is currently engaged in the Discovery process w the District Attorney’s Office."

According to sources who spoke to Page Six, the singer was at the American Hotel with friends, and when he was pulled over, "His friends were telling the police, 'Let him go, let him go.'"

Another source claimed, "Justin said under his breath, 'This is going to ruin the tour.' The cop replied, 'What tour?' Justin said, 'The world tour.'"

Timberlake is scheduled to go on tour starting this Friday in Chicago.

Justin Timberlake

Britney Spears and Justin Timberlake in 2001.

(Image credit: Getty Images)

As for his relationship to Spears, they dated between 1999 and 2002, with fans developing strong opinions about Timberlake first amid his ex' conservatorship, then when she released her memoir The Woman in Me.

In the 2023 book, Spears revealed that Timberlake had cheated on her, and that she had had an abortion during their relationship, in part because "Justin was so sure that he didn’t want to be a father."

Iris Goldsztajn
Morning Editor

Iris Goldsztajn is a London-based journalist, editor and author. She is the morning editor at Marie Claire, and her work has appeared in the likes of British Vogue, InStyle, Cosmopolitan, Refinery29 and SELF. Iris writes about everything from celebrity news and relationship advice to the pitfalls of diet culture and the joys of exercise. She has many opinions on Harry Styles, and can typically be found eating her body weight in cheap chocolate.