The young actor who plays Tony Soprano's son is facing robbery and drug charges today after being arrested early this morning in New York, police said.
Sixteen-year-old Robert Iler, who plays Anthony "A.J." Soprano, Jr., was charged with robbery and possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia. He was due to be arraigned later today.
Sources told ABCNEWS.com that Iler told police he was not involved in the robbery. The sources said they did not know what, if anything, he said about the drug charge.
$40, Marijuana — and a World of Trouble
Police say Iler and three others confronted two other teenagers after midnight in a park on the Upper East Side of Manhattan, and demanded money. Police said the suspects claimed to have a weapon, but did not produce one. The kids allegedly gave Iler and his companions $40, sources said.
The alleged victims then reported the incident to police and identified Iler and his companions, Alban Selimaj, 16, Michael Cournede, 19, and a 15-year-old male, police said. Police said they found a pipe and a small amount of marijuana on Iler and a box cutter on Cournede.
All four were charged with robbery, and Cournede faces a criminal weapons possession charge for the box-cutter.
Life Imitating Art?
Iler got his start in commercials at the age of 6. Known mostly for his role as Tony Soprono's son on HBO's The Sopranos, Iler has also appeared in Oz, another hit show on the cable network.
The young actor, who plays a troubled teenager who causes problems for his Mafia family with his misbehavior on the popular series, joked about his arrest with the other suspects, according to police sources, the Associated Press reported.
In one episode, the character was caught cheating on a mathematics test, and in another he broke into his school and vandalized a trophy case and threw furniture into the pool.
One of Iler's neighbors in Manhattan said the teenager doesn't seem like the character he plays on television.
"He's a well behaved kid so hopefully he's just in the wrong place at the wrong time and things'll work out right for him," Margie Daly said.
ABC station WABC in New York contributed to this report.