American rapper and songwriter Kanye West has admitted to punching a man after he was accused of battery this week.
According to People magazine, the 22-time Grammy Award winner detailed his side of the altercation that took place early on Thursday morning in downtown Los Angeles in his upcoming episode of 'Hollywood Unlocked'.
"So as far as the paparazzi goes, it wasn't a fan," he claimed, as per a sneak peek.
"It was 3 a.m. in front of the Warehouse. I'm saying, 'You don't know what I'm dealing with right now.' I just finished these two songs, I came from the studio," West said.
He added, "And this dude, he just had this real attitude, like, 'What you gonna do? And see that?' Imma just tell you, that blue COVID mask ain't stop that knockout, you know what I'm saying?"
West was named as a suspect in a battery report from Thursday's altercation, an LAPD source previously confirmed to People magazine, saying West jumped out of his car outside Soho Warehouse and punched a man who approached him for an autograph, knocking him to the ground.
The rapper said that the man wasn't a fan, but was "taking autographs to make money on them," noting: "This is the same as the paparazzi, this is not a fan. This is someone who is using your image, who probably never listened to your songs."
In a video of the incident obtained by TMZ, West could be seen screaming "get away from me" at a woman who told him, "I am your family," as a man lay on the sidewalk nearby. "No! No, you were supposed to talk to her," West shouted back at her.
The 'Donda' artist explained that the woman was his cousin, who had just returned from attempting to speak to his estranged wife Kim Kardashian about personal parenting matters.
He continued, "So I end up getting into an altercation with the guy that wanted to make money off of my autographs, then my cousin pulls up and she's talking to me. I say, 'Give me a breather. Get away from me.' She is not taking accountability for the fact that she did not do what she was supposed to do, and that added to me being in a mood where I was like, 'I am not going to have this.'"
The alleged altercation came after a night on the town with his girlfriend Julia Fox, Madonna, Antonio Brown, Floyd Mayweather, Evan Ross and others at Delilah. "They all had dinner in the private dining room. They came separately but just ended up having dinner together. Kanye and Julia wouldn't leave each other's sides," a source told People magazine.
In 2014, the rapper was arrested for "assaulting" a photographer at Los Angeles International Airport. At the time, he was sentenced to 250 hours of community service, two years probation and 24 anger management sessions.
Similarly, West was arrested in 2008 for vandalism and battery over an altercation with photographers at the same airport, where he allegedly damaged a camera.
He was later released on USD 20,000 bail, and the case was dismissed after he paid for the photographers' broken equipment attended anger management counseling, as per People magazine. (ANI)