"Right now the paps are above the law," complains the rapper after his second paparazzi-related arrest

By Ivory Jeff Clinton
November 16, 2008 04:20 PM
Frank Trapper/Corbis

Kanye West denies assaulting a photographer in a “bogus” incident outside a Newcastle, England, bar that led to the rapper’s second paparazzi-related arrest.

“When I left the club,” he writes in his blog, “I was encountered by a thirsty paparazzi as usual. He felt he had more rights to my space than me, so I put my hand up to prevent him from taking my image. I didn’t assault him.”

The hip-hop star, 31, who is currently performing in the U.K. as part of his Glow in the Dark tour, goes on to say, “I guess in all the commotion the camera scraped his nose.”

Three hours later, West states, five “very cordial” police officers arrived a his hotel room and explained that they had to arrest him because a complaint had been filed.

“That was the bogus part,” he says. “They placed me in handcuffs and drove me to the station. They spoke about how this was obviously a publicity stunt by the photographer but they still had to go through the motions.”

Although arrested on suspicion of assault and detained, West was released without charge. He says, however, that his reputation has taken a hit.

“Sure enough the next morning, plastered across every media outlet… Kanye Gets Arrested. It didn’t matter that I wasn’t charged or that I hadn’t assaulted anyone,” he laments. “All that mattered was that I was arrested.”

In the blog post, he also calls for strict laws to crack down on shutterbugs whose practices he deems intrusive.

“When will there be a law passed that simply enforces that someone has to ask to have a photograph of you?” he wonders. “That would seem like common courtesy. Right now the paps are above the law and the people they shoot are below it.”

This run-in with the authorities marked West’s second arrest this year, following a similar incident in September at Los Angeles International Airport, for which he was accused of damaging a photographer’s camera. He has not been charged in that alleged altercation.

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