Kanye West has a few choice words for the paparazzi after his second photographer-related arrest in three months took place early Friday morning at a club in Northern England.
As previously reported, the 31-year-old rapper was briefly detained and released without charge following the incident with freelance photographer Terry Blackburn outside the Tup Tup Palace in Newcastle.
“[West] had four women around him,” Blackburn explained to BBC 1Xtra on Friday. “As I approached the car which he was getting into, he ran around the back and I ran around the front to try and meet him around the side. Just as soon as I put my camera up to my face, that was it – he just pushed it in my face.”
Blackburn claimed the incident left him with his nose “cut open.”
Kanye, meanwhile, used his blog to post his side of the story. He wrote on Saturday: “When I left the club, I was encountered by a thirsty paparazzi as usual. He felt he had more rights to my space than me, so I put my hand up to prevent him from taking my image.
“I didn’t assault him, merely putting my hand up to cover his lens. My security yelled, ‘Get the camera off him.’ I guess in all the commotion the camera scraped his nose.”
West was later arrested by officers at his hotel in Gateshead, and taken to a police station.
“The cops were very cordial but told me they had to arrest me because a complaint was filed,” he said. “That was the bogus part. They still had to go through the motions.
“When I got back to the hotel there were paparazzi hanging above the bridge above the hotel trying to get a shot of me getting out of the police van. Even though I wasn’t charged, the damage was done.”
West added: “Let us not forget that the paps killed Princess Diana. When will there be a law passed… that someone has to ask to take a photograph of you? That would seem like common courtesy. What should be illegal is pictures taken with the intent to sell – like drugs with the intent to sell.”
“I am not a celebrity,” he continued. “I am a normal person that’s just famous. I refuse to sneak in and out of back doors and kitchens of hotels.”
“Right now, the paps are above the law and the people who they shoot are below it.”
West, whose UK tour ends in Manchester on Monday, was also involved in a scuffle with a photographer at a Los Angeles airport in September.