Coolio Charged With Possession, Battery

Charges follow alleged incident at Los Angeles International Airport last week.

Rapper [artist id="927"]Coolio[/artist] (born Artis Leon Ivey Jr.), was charged with possession of a cocaine base — a legal reference to crack cocaine — and battery on Tuesday (March 10), following his arrest on Friday after an alleged incident at the Los Angeles International Airport.

According to a press release issued by the Los Angeles District Attorney's Office, Coolio, 45, was arrested at LAX after "authorities searched his luggage and allegedly found cocaine. At one point, Ivey allegedly grabbed a screener's arm to prevent the search."

The rapper faces one felony count of possession of cocaine base, one misdemeanor count of battery and one misdemeanor count of possession of a smoking device. He was released on bail and is scheduled to be arraigned on April 3. If convicted in the case, the Grammy-winning "Gangsta's Paradise" rapper faces up to three years in state prison.

Coolio has not had a chart hit in nearly a decade, but his Web site is promoting an upcoming album titled From the Bottom 2 the Top. A spokesperson for the rapper could not be reached for comment at press time.

He has made a second career as an actor, appearing on "Charmed" and "Futurama" as well as a number of reality shows, including "Celebrity Fear Factor," "Celebrity Bootcamp" and the recent online cooking show, "Cookin' With Coolio." He starred last year, along with his family, in the Oxygen network reality show "Coolio's Rules" and was seen in the British "Celebrity Big Brother" program in January alongside such C-list celebrities as LaToya Jackson, buxom English pinup Lucy Pinder and Verne Troyer.

Coolio was in the news several weeks ago when, during a show at the Staffordshire University in England, he was reportedly robbed of his shoes and some jewels when crowdmembers mugged him after he dove off the stage and crashed to the floor when patrons parted and failed to catch him.