Singer and rapper, Wyclef Jean was swooped on by Los Angeles Police last night after his appearance matched that of an armed robbery suspect on the run.
But it turned out it was a case of mistaken identity. The Grammy-winning artiste was on his way from a late night in the studio.
Video of the incident was posted to his Instagram and Twitter accounts.
He wrote: “LAPD another case of mistaken identity”
“Black man with red bandana robbed a gas station as I was in the studio working but (I’m) in handcuffs?”
“They just took off my Haitian bandana,” he said in the first video, adding, “The LAPD have me in cuffs for absolutely nothing.”
In a second video, which appears to have been shot by someone else in the car, Wyclef can be heard telling the officers that he was a recording artist on his way back from the studio, asking one of the people he was with to provide the address of the studio and saying that he’ll sue the LAPD.
According to USA TODAY, Sgt. D. Walker with the LAPD’s West Hollywood station, which is handling media inquiries about the case, said that both Wyclef and his vehicle matched the description of an armed robbery suspect in the area and that the singer was detained for approximately 10 minutes (but not arrested) while sheriff’s deputies on the scene conferred with the robbery victim. He was released after they determined that they had the wrong man.
Providing more details of the encounter, Wyclef tweeted:
“I was asked by the police to put my hands up.
“Then I was told do not move. I was instantly handcuffed before being asked to identify myself. Nor was I told why I was being cuffed. In the process, I said my name and told them they have the wrong person. They proceeded to ignore me and I was treated like a criminal until other police showed up and pointed out they had the wrong person.”
He continued, “I am sure no father wants his sons or daughters to see him in handcuffs, especially if he is innocent. As someone who has law enforcers in his family, I was appalled by this behavior of the LAPD.”
USA TODAY reports that Wyclef’s manager Jerry Blair quoted his tweets in a statement that the police did apologize — “after handcuffing him.”