Maryland State Police said they arrested Grammy-nominated rapper 2 Chainz on a drug citationfollowing a Thursday traffic stop on his way to perform at a homecoming event at the University of Maryland Eastern Shore.
The rapper, whose real name is Tauheed Epps, tweeted about the incident and posted a photo of himself standing with two unidentified state troopers. Gregory Shipley, a spokesman for the state police, told The Baltimore Sun that the incident is under review.
Troopers pulled over a white Ford van for going 79 miles per hour in a 55 mile per hour zone at the intersection of Route 50 and Rabbit Hill Road at about 9:20 p.m., said Sgt. Marc Black, a state police spokesman. Black said police smelled an odor of burnt marijuana, and conducted a probable cause search where they found a backpack containing a grinder with trace amounts of marijuana.
Black said Epps claimed ownership of the backpack and was arrested and issued a citation for possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia.
Epps tweeted about the experience, writing that a member of his entourage said the suspected drugs belonged to him but that Epps was arrested anyway. "They said, he [the entourage member] don't smoke," Epps wrote. "How da [expletive] u know?"
The photo, meanwhile, had been "liked" on photo-sharing site Instagram nearly 45,000 times by Friday afternoon. "Locked me up then wanted pictures," he wrote on Twitter.
It was unclear who had the idea to take the picture. Sen. Richard F. Colburn, a Republican who represents Talbot County in the General Assembly, said it would be "poor judgment" if the officers initiated it.
Still, he wondered why Epps chose to publicize the image.
"It's not a glorious thing to be arrested," he said. "It will [probably promote] sales for 2 Chainz to promote advertisement of his arrest. It's hard for me to understand why anybody would want to do that."
Black said there is "no specific policy, per se" about officers taking pictures with people they arrest. "But we're looking at it administratively to see if anything should be pursued," Black said.
He said Epps had not filed a complaint about the incident and police have no contact since last night with him or his group. Epps' publicist said he would not be available for comment about the incident.
He continued to tweet about the ordeal and still made it to his performance at the university.
"I work hard and pray even harder , we gone always b good yall...." he wrote. "Not to mention my security said it was his and they said , he don't smoke ,, how ... u know? Haha wut a valentines day!!!"
The rapper was also arrested at LaGuardia Airport last May and charged with fourth-degree criminal possession of a weapon when TSA agents found what they believed to be brass knuckles in his carry-on. His friend Big Sean said that they weren't brass knuckles but a "4 finger ring that spelled hood" that 2 Chainz had been wearing at a shoot the day before.
2 Chainz was nominated for best rap song, rap album and rap performance at Sunday's Grammys Awards.
Baltimore Sun reporter Alison Matas and the Los Angeles Times contributed to this article.Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun