The British boy band were mobbed by a hoard of paparazzi as they touched down at LA X on Tuesday night (19.11.13), resulting in a stampede during which a female fan claims she was accidentally hit in the face by Zayn Malik.
Gabrielle Meredith, who was waiting for a photo opportunity with the 'Story Of My Life' hitmakers, got caught in the crossfire as the newly-engaged singer attempted to forge a way out of the crowd, and was painfully "high fived" in the face by Zayn as he tried to protect her from a cameraman.
She wrote on Twitter: "So I was walking next to Zayn and a pap hit me in the head with a camera and I said ow and Zayn was like "day stawp" and flung his hand out.
"and [Zayn] hit me and then the pap in the face and other paps said "we got that on camera / I'm okay my hat cushioned the blow of the camera but Zayn hit my actual face (sic)".
The 18-year-old superfan's followers were quick to express their concern, but Gabrielle insisted she was fine and explained there had allegedly also been physical blows between the 20-year-old singer and the paparazzo.
She added: "Someone tried to hold Zayn back when he hit the pap but idk who :/ there were just so many people (sic)".
Meanwhile, Zayn's bandmate Niall Horan was furious after being trampled to the ground in the mob.
The angry Irish star wrote on Twitter: "Just got dragged to the floor by some idiot with a camera! Could have seen the fans as well, but they messed it all up!"
Harry Styles, Louis Tomlinson and Liam Payne appear to have escaped unscathed, and the band were quickly whisked away in black SUVs before the incident could escalate.