DMX, Mugshot

DMX apparently isn't one for facing the music of the night.

Three days after getting busted for a months-old traffic violation, the actor-rapper was arrested early Friday at his Phoenix-area home on suspicion of animal abuse and felony drug possession following a search of the house and, before that, a brief standoff with police when he attempted to shut himself up in his bedroom.

According to the Maricopa County sheriff's office, a SWAT team executed a search warrant on DMX's Cave Creek, Ariz., residence at about 3 a.m. in connection with a seven-month-old investigation into reports that the Cradle 2 the Grave star had a number of malnourished pit bulls on his property.

"A guy like this DMX character with all his money and fame has no excuse for not providing proper care for his animals," said Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio. "He has a long criminal history and obviously has no respect for the law."

DMX, whose real name is Earl Simmons, tried holing up in his room when the fuzz first arrived, but officers quickly talked him into cooperating, after which they discovered weapons, drugs and five pit bull puppies, which were taken to a nearby prison where female inmates will look after them (the pups, not the guns and drugs).

The rapper was subsequently booked into Fourth Avenue Jail and charged with seven misdemeanor counts of animal cruelty and four counts of felony drug possession, per Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio. He's due in court May 15.

Meanwhile, DMX's attorney says the hassle at his client's home was unnecessary and that it may have been the hip-hop star's smart mouth that earned him a house call.

"His home was raided by Sheriff Joe allegedly in violation of not coming to court for a moving violation," lawyer Murray Richman told E! News. Authorities "broke the windows and knocked the door down with the SWAT team in order to effectuate the travel violations and arrested him for possession of marijuana.

"Bail was set for $7,500 and he's on his way out now."

Interestingly, Richman added, "they also charged him for the dogs from 10 months ago, even though he wasn't there.

"I think [that] Earl, when he was caught on video just this week speeding at 114 miles per hour, just rubbed it in [the sheriff's] face, so the sheriff felt he had to do something. From what I hear, I would've been glad to bring Earl in if they ever requested it. I called the sheriff on numerous occasions and never, ever received a phone call."

Per the sheriff's office, DMX's Cave Creek home was raided in August after "numerous complaints came in concerning neglected animals on his property."

Following the initial search, 12 pit bull mixes were removed from the premises and taken to a veterinary ER to be treated for dehydration and malnutrition. Detectives also found the carcasses of three other dogs partially buried on site, as well as guns, ammunition, drugs and drug paraphernalia inside the house.

There was no comment on why it took so darn long to get from A to B, but Maricopa County Attorney Andrew Thomas said he will be prosecuting this case as he would any other.

"A person's celebrity status does not preclude this office from bringing charges against a defendant," he said. "We are handling this case as we would any other incident of animal cruelty."

Additional reporting by Josh Grossberg

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