Hip-hop phenom Soulja Boy proclaimed his innocence after being released on bond following his arrest for marijuana possession Tuesday in Carroll County.
Dozens of screaming fans were waiting for him outside a bail bond company, and he said, "I'm innocent, man," as bodyguards led him to a car, the Associated Press reported.
The newly minted 21-year-old, also known as DeAndre Cortez Way, was traveling west on I-20 around 2:30 a.m., Tuesday with four other men when their Cadillac Escalade was pulled over in Temple, about 20 miles east of the Alabama state line, for what police called a vehicle equipment violation.
Temple Police spokeswoman officer Dana Rampy said the police officer who made the stop searched the vehicle and found more than five ounces of marijuana, cash and handguns.
Way and his four travelmates were charged with felony marijuana possession, felony marijuana possession with intent to distribute and possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony, and were taken to the Carroll County Jail.
“It was a lot of marijuana,” Rampy told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, noting that police consider more than an ounce an amount intended for sale.
“All of the individuals were very cooperative,” she said.
Arrested with Way were Gregory Allen Latimore, 56, Cameron Andres Wagner, 23, Dontay Lamar Bates, 27, and James Raymond Smith, 35. Smith, police said, had an outstanding warrant for his arrest in Lowndes County.
It is unclear how many weapons police found in the SUV.
Way was released on a $10,000 bond after appearing before a Carroll County judge Tuesday afternoon.
The Chicago-born rapper grew up in Batesville, Miss., and rose to prominence as a teen after posting a video for his song (complete with intricate dance moves) "Crank Dat" on YouTube in 2007.
--Dispatch editor Angel K. Brooks contributed to this article.