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'My rap songs are more intimidating than their rifles': Afroman says police raid, lawsuit are boosting fame

The Adams County Sheriff's Office is suing the rapper following a police raid on his home
Posted at 12:02 PM, May 18, 2023

ADAMS COUNTY, Ohio — From a new viral song, to a presidential campaign, Grammy nominated rapper Afroman has a lot on his plate as he gears up for his North American tour this summer.

But it's not all positive energy coming from the "big city boy from LA." He's facing a lawsuit from the Adams County Sheriff's Office that involves some of the very music he plans to perform across the country starting next month.

Joseph Foreman, AKA Afroman, released his album "Lemon Pound Cake" shortly after his Ohio home was raided by the Adams County Sheriff's Office last year.

"I was in Chicago. And my neighbors called me and told me that the police were all over my property," Afroman said.

The Adams County Sheriff's Office executed a search warrant on the artist's home on August 21. Afroman's home surveillance system captured the moments police broke through his gate and forcefully entered his home with their guns drawn.

According to Afroman, the warrant was for drug trafficking and kidnapping.

He joked about how he can understand why some law enforcement could think he has "a million pounds of weed" but the kidnapping allegation was a shock.

"Snooping around and looking all in my closet and everything," he said. "Guess they thought I had a secret dungeon underneath my house or something."

The rapper is not facing any charges.

The Adams County Sheriff's Office said the raid was part of an "ongoing investigation."

The artist said the raid caused his home significant damage. He also said the deputies disconnected his surveillance footage and stole some of his money.

"$400 came up missing from what they said they had. So the crime scene switches from my house to the police station. They started investigating themselves and they say it was simply a miscount," he said. "How do you miscount $400?"

The Adams County Sheriff's Office told WCPO that Clermont County did an outside investigation on the raid and found that no money was stolen, just miscounted.

Watch the full interview here:

The rapper said he turned to music to cope with the humiliation he felt after the raid.

"I got mad," he said. "I wrote down everything that annoyed me."

One thing led to another and the songs just kept flowing.

"Lemon Pound Cake," "Why You Disconnecting My Video Camera," "Will You Help Me Repair My Door" and " I'm A Have A Good Time" are just some of the songs on his new album titled "Lemon Pound Cake" that he said was inspired by the raid.

"I wrote everything I could come up with.... and then I said 'you know, I'm gonna sell this and try to raise money for the damages,'" he said.

He used the footage from the raid to make music videos that went viral.

"I turn a bad situation into a good one, you know, they brought me material," Afroman said.

The rapper said he hasn't seen this much publicity since his songs "Because I Got High" and "Crazy Rap (Colt 45 & 2 Zig Zags)" blew up in the early 2000s.

"They just did a parody of me on Saturday Night Live. You know, they wasn't putting me on Saturday Night Live before the Adams County Sheriff raided my house."

The artist said his fans love the new music.

"People out there are reacting to what they don't have a big enough platform to bring attention to. And they're like, 'yes, that's what happened to me.'"

Several members of the Adams County Sheriff's Office are not fans of the new music. They're suing Afroman for using their images without permission for multiple commercial purposes.

Examples from the lawsuit include an Instagram post that features a fan holding a shirt that reads "Officer Pound Cake" and depicts some of the plaintiffs alongside Peter Griffin from "Family Guy" and a picture of a lemon pound cake. The posts caption reads "These lemon poundcake shirts are going fast !!!"

The plaintiffs argue that Afroman used their likeness and depictions "without the authorization of any of the plaintiffs to do so." The lawsuit goes on to say that the plaintiffs have "suffered humiliation, ridicule, mental distress, embarrassment and loss of reputation." The lawsuit claims they also received death threats.

Afroman said when he learned about the lawsuit, he was shocked.

"From the first 10 seconds. I was offended. I was appalled. I was like 'what?' Then I started laughing," he said. "These guys with their rifles are crying about my comedy songs."

The rapper said he's not at all concerned with the lawsuit.

"I won. My rap songs are more intimidating than their rifles," he said. "My rap songs got big bad corrupt cops in the corner."

Read the full lawsuit here:

So what's next for Afroman?

The rapper's next tour kicks off June 2 in Portland. He said he has no plans to stop performing his new songs and selling his new merch that feature the footage from the raid.

"I don't want those cops to die. I don't want them to go to hell and burn forever. I do want to talk a lot of crap about them and make a whole bunch of money. And I believe that's quite humane under the circumstances," he said.

He also told WCPO that he plans to file a countersuit.

"I lost money when they yelled out the kidnapping word. A lot of people start backing out of shows," he said.

He said he plans on suing the Adams County Sheriff's Office for "defamation of character, stealing my money, tampering with evidence destroying my video cameras and vandalism."

In the meantime, he's running for President of the United States in 2024.

"I want to get cannabis legal in all 50 states. I want to make it federally legal. So no other fellow American has to go through what I've been through."

He also said he wants to see "serious" police reform.

The rapper has no plans to leave Adams County. He's lived in the region since 2005 and despite the raid, he said he still feels at home in rural Ohio.

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