Rod Wave was arrested on two counts of illegal possession of a weapon or ammo in Manatee County, Florida on Wednesday (April 3), according to arrest records viewed by Billboard.

The St. Petersburg Police Department hosted a press conference in the aftermath of the arrest alleging that Rod — born Rodarius Marcell Green — was connected to a gang-related shooting in Florida that left four bystanders injured outside of Sonic Sports Bar in St. Petersburg.

St. Petersburg Police Chief Mike Kovacsev explained that three of the apprehended assailants (Christopher Atkins, Keith Westby and Kevontre Wesby) are allegedly connected to the Young Gangsters gang and that two more are in the process of being arrested after law enforcement discovered 60 shell casings of ammo at the site of the shooting, which occurred on Sunday night (March 31).

Kovacsev claimed that the getaway vehicle used in the shooting was registered to Rod and that the Palm Avenue residence the group fled to was also allegedly registered to the “Heart On Ice” singer.

“The vehicle they fled in was registered to [Green],” Kovacsev said. “They also fled back to a residence at 500 Palm Avenue North … That residence was rented by [Green] as well. We executed a search warrant at that location on Monday night and we recovered two assault rifles, two pounds of marijuana and a great deal of evidence we’re going to utilize the case going forward.”

Police determined that “another residence” was rented by Rod in Palm Meadow and shifted the focus to that location, where they executed a search warrant. Subjects leaving that residence were arrested on weapons charges by undercover detectives and the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office.

“We are hopeful and anticipate potentially other evidence to be taken out of the vehicles as we do search warrants over the next couple of days,” Kovacsev added. “We went and had the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office execute that warrant and we located a number of other assault rifles and a handgun inside that residence.”

The police chief said that along with the firearms, money and jewelry were also seized. More charges are also possibly looming related to the shooting and narcotics.

Rod’s weapon possession charges listed him as a convicted felon, which his attorney, Bradford Cohen, vehemently denies. Cohen also denies Wave’s connection to the shooting.

“[Rod] has nothing to do with a shooting,” Cohen tells Billboard. “There was nothing found in his car and he is not a convicted felon.”

Cohen and another of Rod’s attorneys, Mark Rankin, released a joint statement on Cohen’s Instagram claiming that the judge agreed that the evidence didn’t support the charges and that the Florida singer was set free on Wednesday.

“Rod was arrested and detained with absolutely no evidence of wrongdoing,” Cohen captioned the Instagram post featuring a photo of Rod. “The police claimed he was a felon in possession of ammunition. Not only was he not in possession of ammunition, a basic check of public records would have easily demonstrated to the police that he was not a convicted felon. The prosecutor and the judge immediately agreed that the evidence did not support the charge and set him free the same day.”

Rod was previously arrested in his hometown of St. Petersburg in May 2022 on a felony charge of battery by strangulation, which was dropped weeks later. That arrest stemmed from an April 2022 incident involving Wave and his ex-girlfriend, who alleged that the singer entered her home and choked her, according to the arrest warrant.

Billboard has reached out to the St. Petersburg Police Department for additional information.

This is a developing story.


Chris Eggertsen
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