The video was shot by the paparazzo who was attacked. It ends in a blur as West lunges, and the photographer loses control of his equipment, according to the 50-second clip, posted by TMZ.
Other cameramen who were there kept silent, the video showed. The scene begins with West emerging from the Tom Bradley International Terminal. He was just returning from a flight overseas.
Everything proceeds calmly as West heads to his car accompanied by a bodyguard.
“Kanye… Can we talk to you Kanye?” shouts the photographer.
West started glaring at the cameraman, who continued filming. “Kanye,” he shouted. “What’s going on?
“What was up with all that stuff? Do you just want to quash all that, ’cause you’re a cool guy,” he continued.
Kanye stopped and took a half-step toward the paparazzo, but then turned away and continued toward his car.
“C’mon, Kanye, be cool, man. What’s going on? Why can’t we talk to you?”
With that, West turned and started walking toward the unidentified photographer. “C’mon, man, I don’t want to fight with you.”
West’s bodyguard circled around and stood behind him.
“Seriously, I don’t want to fight with you, I’m just asking…”
Kanye continued to walk toward the guy and finally started talking: “I told you no questions, right?”
“What you’re trying to do is get me in trouble, so I step off with you, so I have to pay you $250,000 and sh*t…”
“No, no…no, no, no,” the photographer replied. Too, late; Kanye started swarming, yeeeeezus!
Paparazzi can be belligerent and ask insulting questions, but this quy was nothing but polite. He just talked… and, yep, looks like he’ll definitely get a payday. Kanye on the other hand, could be looking at some jail time. The video could bump the charge to felony assault.
Footnote: They way Kanye talked, apparently $250,000 is the going rate for paparazzi beat downs.
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Update: Here’s the confrontation from another angle.