Kanye West, Bodyguard Arrested At LAX
First Published: September 11, 2008 3:49 PM EDT Credit: Access Hollywood
LOS ANGELES, Calif. -- Kanye West and his bodyguard, Don Crowley, were arrested at LAX this morning, the LAX Police Department has confirmed to Access Hollywood, which was the first news outlet to break the news online today.
The incident took place at 7:51 AM this morning at the entrance to the security checkpoint for American Airlines at Terminal 4. The two were en route to Honolulu at the time.
According to an eyewitness on the scene who spoke with Access, the incident began when Kanye approached a camera that was being aimed at him by a photographer.
According to the gossip Web site TMZ.com, the paparazzo was attempting to photograph the rap star, when Kanye allegedly confronted the photographer, grabbing his camera (reportedly valued at over $10,000) and smashing it to the ground. Kanye then smashed another piece of the camera, possibly the flash, to the ground.
A TMZ videographer named Erik, who was also present, was attempting to videotape Kanye and the photographer, when Don (the bodyguard) grabbed TMZ’s video camera. A struggle reportedly ensued between Don and Erik.
Airport security intervened and took Don and the photographer aside, and spoke to both of them, later releasing them both.
Kanye then approached the photographer again, getting “in his face,” Access’ witness said. A group of flight attendants also saw Kanye confront the photographer again, according to the witness.
According to TMZ, Kanye then tried to board his plane, but overheard police talking with Erik about whether or not he had filmed the incident.
Kanye reportedly then approached Erik demanding the tape, yelling, “Give me the f****** videotape,” which caused Erik’s camera to smash to the ground (yes, this was the 2nd camera smashed to the ground)!
As the incident escalated, approximately eight LAX police officers apprehended Kanye, putting him in handcuffs, and took him and Don into custody, according to Access’ witness.
According to Access’ witness, LAX Police did not detain either photographer. The witness also noted that due to the anniversary of 9-11, police presence at the airport appeared to be higher than normal.
Kanye and Don were taken to the LAPD Pacific Division where they were booked and charged with felony vandalism.
According to LAX Police, “Airport Police had initially received the call as also involving a potential battery. However, following initial investigation, it was determined that no battery occurred.”
An LAX traffic cop told an Access producer on site that Kanye and his entourage will be returning to get on another American Airlines flight, after they’re booked. The next direct flights departing LAX for Honolulu are at 3:20 PM and 6:40 PM.
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