NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Kid Rock was arrested Wednesday by Nashville police on charges that he punched a disc jockey at a strip club.
The 34-year-old rapper was released after posting a $3,000 bond on a charge of simple assault, a misdemeanor punishable by up to a year in jail.
“Everything is wonderful. It was a beautiful night,” Kid Rock said as he left the Criminal Justice Center.
His arraignment was set for March 30.
A few hours earlier, Kid Rock had appeared before Night Court Commissioner Howard Taradash. He chewed gum and laughed and joked with police officers as he stood in the dock – a small room with a large glass window that separates defendants from the commissioner and observers.
Authorities said he was charged after a 2:50 a.m. altercation at Christie’s Cabaret near downtown Nashville.
Police said 30-year-old Jerry Campos of Cedar Hill, Tenn., was in the DJ booth when he exchanged words with someone in the audience. Believing his friend had been insulted, Kid Rock demanded an apology.
Campos refused, and Kid Rock struck him in the face twice, police said.
Television footage from outside the club showed Campos with a red mark on his face and holding his broken eyeglasses.
“They said I broke his glasses? Who?” Kid Rock said to reporters after his release.
Police Lt. Calvin Hullett said Kid Rock left through a back door of another strip club when authorities showed up to arrest him.
Police finally caught up with him about 7 a.m. at an apartment near Vanderbilt University where the singer had been staying.
When police found him, Kid Rock told them he had dodged them because he wanted to sober up before being booked, Hullett said.
Less than an hour after Kid Rock’s court appearance, a Vanderbilt University campus officer pulled the star over after his Corvette accelerated quickly and squealed its tires, officials said. The officer – who got an autograph – smelled alcohol but never administered a sobriety test, letting the performer go with a warning, officials said. He was fired later Wednesday.
Born Bob Ritchie, Kid Rock was a Detroit-area hip-hop DJ when he broke through with 1998’s “Devil Without a Cause,” which successfully married hard rock beats with rap lyrics.