OAKLAND — Eldridge Cleaver, an author and a former Black Panther, has been arrested for investigation of cocaine charges, authorities said.
Cleaver and a companion were arrested Friday on suspicion of possessing and transporting cocaine. They were released on $2,500 bail.
Cleaver, 52, the author of the best-selling book, "Soul on Ice," said the arrest was a mistake and predicted the charges will be dropped.
Oakland Police Lt. Larry Newman said that Cleaver and Lothario Lotho, 40, of Berkeley, were arrested when police found pieces of rock cocaine in Cleaver's car.
Cleaver's car was stopped about 6 p.m. after it crossed to the wrong side of the street and nearly collided with a police car, Newman said. The cocaine was discovered while a police officer was writing a traffic citation, Newman said.
But Cleaver disputed the drug allegation. He said he is diabetic and couldn't use cocaine if he wanted to.