Dancehall artiste facing felony charges in United States
After what dancehall artiste and producer Rum Blood calls an entertaining Friday evening on the streets of Los Angeles, California, on November 29, he woke up in a jail cell the next morning.
Ranaldo Evans, the artiste's given name, was arrested by police of the 77th Street Community Police Station, when a vehicle he was a passenger in was pulled over and searched. Illegal firearms were also recovered.
"As I reach into the vehicle, all I can remember is seeing bare lights a flash and police around it. But because I was intoxicated, having been drinking champagne for most of the night, I only realised what happened when I wake up in jail," Rum Blood told THE STAR.
"Me only hear dem find guns in the car. I still haven't come to terms with the fact that they have me on felony charges because of the weapons found," he continued.
Rum Blood, who is known as one of the founding members of popular 1990s dancehall group Ward 21, said that he is disappointed with the turn of events, having booking a ticket to travel home to Jamaica this week to spend the Christmas holidays.
"The party I was leaving that morning, Night of the Star, is one that I have hosted for the past three stagings; of course persons are speculating that it may be a set-up or whatever," he said.
Praying for the best
Rum Blood was released on US$35,000 bail and spent 12 hours in lock-up. He is to face a judge on Friday, December 27.
"So for now I am staying put where I am and praying for the best," he said about trying to prove his innocence.
The charges come at a time when Rum Blood has been making moves on the international scene.
He has been working with international star Safaree over the past year and even showed up in an episode of VH1's Love and Hip Hop series.
His most recent collaboration, I'm Gonna Pray, with fellow dancehall artiste Bugle, released approximately two months ago, serves as declaration of how Rum Blood is presently feeling.
"I can only continue to keep positive and give God thanks because things could have happened differently. And I am still very much focused on my music career and just don't want anything to get in the way of its progress," he said.