Kanye West Arrested at LA Airport

Rapper arrested at LAX airport after alleged altercation with photographer.

ByABC News
September 11, 2008, 1:20 PM

Sept. 11, 2008— -- Police at Los Angeles International Airport arrested rapper Kanye West on felony vandalism charges after an alleged altercation with a photographer, an airport spokesman confirmed to ABC News.

West and an unidentified man traveling with him "earlier described as his road manager, now being described as his body guard," according to the spokesman, is also facing charges of felony vandalism as well as battery.

The pair allegedly broke the photographer's camera, which is valued at more than $10,000.

The spokesman said that the incident occurred shortly before 8 a.m. Thursday, outside the passenger screening area at the airport's Terminal 4, which is used by American Airlines.

West's publicist did not immediately respond to a request to comment on the arrest.

The spokesman said police are still interviewing witnesses. West, 31, and his bodyguard were expected to be taken to the Los Angeles Police Department's Pacific Division for booking.

TMZ.com reported on its Web site that one of its cameramen witnessed the alleged altercation. That cameraman, identified by the first name Erik, said West rushed the photographer, grabbed his camera and a struggle ensued.

The report said that West then threw the man's camera to the ground, smashing it.

The TMZ.com report says cameraman Erik was taping the incident, but that when West's bodyguard noticed his camera he approached him and demanded his camera, but damaged it after the videographer refused to turn it over.

The Grammy award-winning artist most recently performed at last Sunday's MTV Video Music Awards.

West rocketed to fame after the release of his hit Through the Wire in 2003. He released his first album, College Dropout, the next year, and followed it up with 2005's Late Registration and Graduation, released last year.

He started his music career as a record producer, most notably putting his stamp on Jay-Z's 2001 album, The Blueprint. West has also collaborated with Alicia Keys, John Legend and numerous other artists.