Wyclef Jean is speaking out after law enforcement officials handcuffed him in a case of mistaken identity that transpired overnight.
The Fugees frontman and two female passengers, one of them being his manager, were reportedly pulled over by Los Angeles County Sheriff’s deputies at approximately 1:30 a.m. in West Hollywood. Officials claim his vehicle matched the description of a car used in an armed robbery nearby.
Wyclef, who says he was wearing a Haitian flag bandana, was spotted and stopped because the armed robbery suspect was reportedly wearing a red bandana at the time of the alleged crime, as per TMZ.
In videos released by Clef, the rapper-singer pleads with officers before vowing to sue. “Coming from the studio with T-Baby. Y’all see, the police have handcuffs on me,” he says. “They just took off my Haitian bandana. That’s what’s going on right now with Wyclef in L.A. The LAPD have me in cuffs for absolutely nothing.” In another clip, he adds: “I am going to sue the LAPD.”
Wyclef captioned one of the videos with a description of the evening, from his perspective.
“I was asked by the police to put my hands up,” he wrote. “Then I was told do not move. I was instantly hand cuffed before being asked to identify myself and before being told why. In the process I said my name and told them they have wrong person. They proceeded to ignore me and I was treated like a criminal. I am sure no father wants his sons or daughters to see him in Handcuffs especially if he is innocent. As some one who has law enforcers in my family, I was appalled by the bahavior of the LAPD.”
Law enforcement sources say that Clef was handcuffed after he reached toward his waistband. He was reportedly in cuffs for six minutes and was released once officials realized their actual suspect was not accompanied by women.
Another man fitting the alleged suspect’s description was reportedly apprehended at approximately the same time. TMZ released footage from that arrest, as well.
Wyclef just unleashed his J’ouvert EP last month and is currently prepping the release of his eighth studio album, Carnival Vol. III: Road to Clefication, which arrives 10 years after his debut The Carnival.