Russell Brand I Didn't Commit a Crime, I Honored Steve Jobs

3/14/2012 10:18 AM PDT

Russell Brand just kinda, sorta 'fessed up to the whole iPhone snatch and toss in New Orleans ... hilariously blaming Steve Jobs for the whole thing.

Brand just tweeted, "Since Steve Jobs died I cannot bear to see anyone use an iphone irreverently, what I did was a tribute to his memory."

TMZ broke the story ... Brand was accused of ripping an iPhone out of the hands of a paparazzo in New Orleans Monday night ... and then firing the phone at an office building ... shattering a window.

Cops said they were investigating the incident. Brand has since offered to pay for the window he broke.