Lindsay Lohan just can't stay out of trouble, but this time the drama queen is pinning the mess on a party pest with a cell-phone camera.
The "Mean Girls" actress mixed it up with a starstruck congressional staffer in her Manhattan hotel early Sunday, prompting cops to step in.
Police say Lohan took Christian LaBella's cell phone so she could delete dozens of pictures and videos of her partying — and she claims he got physical with her trying to get it back.
After Lohan, 26, called the cops, LaBella, 25, who works for an Illinois Republican, was initially charged with misdemeanor assault in the blowup at the W Hotel Union Square.
But law enforcement sources said the assault rap has already been dropped.
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It was the second time in as many weeks that the NYPD has been called to resolve an issue with Lohan, coming on the heels of her arrest for leaving the scene of a minor car accident.
"She's very shaken up," Lohan's mother, Dina, told the Daily News Sunday afternoon as she comforted the troubled starlet. "Thank God he didn't have a weapon."
Lohan met LaBella — who is from Valley Village, Calif., but has been working in Washington — during her night hanging out at trendy clubs Double Seven and 1Oak.
He works for Rep. John Shimkus and is the nephew of comedian Heather McDonald.
After the club closed around 4 a.m., the actress and LaBella wound up back in her room at the W with other friends, including celebrity booker Claus Hjelmbak.
At about 6 a.m., she took LaBella's cell phone and got upset after discovering the pictures of herself taken earlier in the evening, police sources said. He had been emailing them to friends.
LaBella demanded she return the phone, but Lohan balked — and told cops he threw her down on the bed and scratched her. At one point, the troubled actress locked herself in a bathroom. She finally ran out of the 15th-floor suite — where rooms top $500 a night — and scurried down several flights of stairs, with Hjelmbak in tow.
When the "Freaky Friday" star and her hunky pal began walking back up the stairs, they again encountered LaBella, sources said.
She claimed that he choked her from behind and threw her to the floor before Hjelmbak yanked him away, cops said. Lohan pulled the fire alarm for help as he fled, police said.
Cops who responded spoke to Lohan and began looking for LaBella, who was trapped in the stairwell because the alarm had disabled the elevators.
As he exited the stairwell, police grabbed him. Lohan identified him as her attacker, and he was taken to the 13th Precinct stationhouse.
The assault charge was tossed hours later because Lohan refused medical attention and did not appear to be seriously hurt, sources said.
LaBella and Lohan filed harassment complaints against each other, but the actions will not result in police charges, sources said.
Lohan's spokesman Steve Honig said it was "very distressing and outrageous" that assault charges against LaBella were dropped. "Lindsay was clearly assaulted, and I think there needs to be a consequence for that," Honig said.
LaBella left the stationhouse without speaking to reporters.
"It's shameful that a celebrity with a personal publicist can persecute a nice guy like Christian," LaBella's uncle, Peter Jessop, told the Daily News.
"He's a decent kid who met her at a nightclub and she invited him back to her hotel room with other people," Jessop said. "And now she's using her celebrity to launch a full-scale witch hunt against him just to be relevant again."
LaBella's boss isn't too happy about being dragged into the mess.
"While no one from Congressman Shimkus' office has been contacted by Mr. LaBella following his arrest, he has been an employee in the congressman's Washington office," the pol confirmed in an email.
"Obviously, the congressman does not condone his actions."
LaBella's Facebook page, taken down after he was released from custody, has photos of him mugging with two other prominent Republicans — vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan and erstwhile presidential candidate Herman Cain.
His aunt, a writer for Chelsea Handler's E! show, posed as Sarah Palin to endorse him for president of his fraternity in a YouTube video.
On LaBella's Facebook page, there are also photos of him appearing at celebrity events and posing with reality TV's Kardashian clan. It also appears that he had a couple of bit parts as a child actor.
Lohan's father, Michael, had not spoken to his daughter but had a message for her antagonist.
"Wait till I get this guy," he said.
Lohan left the W Hotel about 2 p.m. Sunday through a loading dock and headed to her mother's home on Long Island. A family friend said the episode set off an asthma attack.
"She's been inside all day," another family friend said. "She's not coming out."
By Barry Paddock , Joanna Molloy , Carson Griffith AND Tracy Connor / New York Daily News
With Soo Youn, Rocco Parascandola, Vera Chinese, Jennifer H. Cunningham, Nate Freeman and Joyce Chen