An investigation into a controversial YouTube video showing young people in a Bessemer City park rapping about drugs and waving a gun has resulted in the arrests of two male suspects on drug charges.
Authorities said Zachary Stalcup, 17, of Bessemer City was charged with simple possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia after police searched his car Wednesday at Bessemer City High School, where he is a student. He was released into the custody of his parents.
Police went to the school because they had information that someone who appeared in the video was in school and possibly had a gun. No weapon was found, but they did discover a small amount of marijuana.
Later, Matthew Pope, 20, who lives near Bessemer City, was charged with felony drug possession of LSD, authorities said. He was released on $10,000 unsecured bond.
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Bessemer City police Chief Tom Ellis said Thursday that Stalcup appears in the video and that Pope “claims to be the director.”
Ellis said school officials in late February complained about the video, which was posted on YouTube with the title “We the City, by Ice & Orvell ft. K-Wright.”
Complaints from the public also began coming in.
Ellis said the video shows a mostly male group at a city park.
“It portrays smoking drugs and waving a gun,” he said. “They’re using vulgar language and throwing gang signs.”
The Bessemer City Police Department, along with the Gaston County Police and a school resource officer began an investigation that continues.
“We haven’t found a gun yet, but we’re still looking,” Ellis said.
Meanwhile, authorities are researching city ordinances to see what violations may have taken place on city property and come up with the appropriate charges.
Ellis thinks the park rapping was not spontaneous, but a “planned event.”
The portrayal of teens smoking drugs and waving a gun “are not a good combination,” he said.
Anyone with information about the case should call the Bessemer City Police Department at 704-629-2235.