Grammy-award winning artist Wyclef Jean was the victim of “mistaken identity” Tuesday night in LA when he was placed in handcuffs for fitting the description of an armed suspect.
Jean was leaving the recording studio when he was ordered out of his car, asked to put his hands up and then detained by police. Despite Jean’s attempts to identify himself, he wasn’t released until authorities determined he was no longer a suspect.
Jean took to Twitter and Instagram to share his frustration. He believes he was a victim of police brutality, racial profiling and police bias.
According to a statement released by Jean’s camp, Jean is requesting a formal investigation into racial profiling by the LAPD, “Mr. Jean is requesting a formal investigation into racial profiling by Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, LAPD Chief Charlie Beck and the LA Sheriff’s Department while calling upon the ACLU and Black Lives Matter to join him in defense of civil liberties and racial bias.”
I was asked by the police to Put my hands up. 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.
A post shared by Wyclef Jean (@wyclefjean) on
NBC reports that police were looking for a black male wearing a dark or grey hoodie and a red bandana. The suspect also allegedly fled in a gold or tan Toyota Sedan which the patrol unit claimed to fit Jean’s vehicle.
Since the incident, Jean has received support from the community including activist DeRay McKesson who retweeted Jean’s tweet with the response, “We are all suspects.”