Update: On the same day that Lange’s team tweeted that he would enter a long-term treatment program, news later broke that the comedian was actually busted for possession of a controlled substance that day, according to reports. In their initial tweet announcing Lange’s entrance into a treatment program, “TeamLange,” as his representation has been signing tweets from the comedian’s account,” did not mention Lange’s apparent arrest.
As Variety reports, Lange is currently being held at Essex County Correctional Facility in Newark, allegedly in an attempt to help him get sober before moving the comedian to long-term drug treatment program. TeamLange, meanwhile, noted online that “Artie was not arrested and sent to jail,” but rather is being detained for “a few days to sober up” before he is transferred to a long-treatment drug rehabilitation facility.
No sentencing information for Lange is currently listed online. The comedian’s camp did not comment on the alleged drug possession, though they did note that “Artie needs us to be with him, not against him” in a Tweet.
The original posting continues below:
Jersey-born comedian Artie Lange has entered a “long-term drug treatment program,” according to a message posted to his Twitter account on Wednesday night.
Signed “TeamLange,” the message indicated Lange, 51, of Hoboken, would begin the rehab program this week, and that fans should “excuse any show advertisements” they might see on the account. Typically, messages posted to Lange’s account appear to come from the comedian himself, and are not signed.
“[Lange] loves and respects his fans… updates coming soon… and it’s time,” the message read. The message’s author did not provide further details about Lange’s treatment.
The move, however, comes following a court appearance in December in which Lange tested positive for cocaine — an infraction that came following a short stint in an inpatient drug rehab program in November. At the time, Lange told NJ 101.5, he felt he had been using drugs “long enough” and was “ready to go and do what I’ve got to do.”
Lange, who has long been open about his struggle with cocaine and heroin addiction, in 2017 was charged with drug possession after New Jersey police allegedly found him with 81 baggies of heroin during a traffic stop. The comedian later failed to appear in court for those charges, was arrested, and pleaded guilty. Judge Nancy Sivilli sentenced Lange to four years of probation, and ordered that he apply to drug court.
At his December court appearance, Lange also made headlines due to the appearance of his nose, which was visibly flattened. As he said on Twitter at the time, that was a result of “32 yrs of gambling drugs booze strippers Whores.” Previously, the comedian told NJ.com that he does not have a septum due to years of cocaine and heroin abuse, which he typically preferred to snort.
Lange expanded on the state of his nose earlier this month, saying on the “Are We Still Talking About This?" podcast that it was further flattened in an altercation in Dec. 2017. As Lange said, he had owed a bookie about $62,000, and the bookie sent a henchman to collect the debt.
The comedian claimed that a 19-year-old man approached him about the money, punched him in the face, and locked him in a van, where the assailant demanded $100,000 to turn Lange loose. He was later let go, but the punch Lange suffered further damaged his nose.
At the time, Lange posted a message that included a picture of him with a swollen nose, as well as the message “U ain’t the man. U run for the man.” As NJ.com reports, the message prompted a welfare check by Hoboken police. He was arrested several days afterward for failing to appear in court on the heroin possession charges to which he ultimately pleaded guilty.
Lange later clarified his story about the incident on Twitter, writing that he was “not kidnapped,” and that merely had “an altercation w someone that lasted a couple hours tops.”
“It has been solved and forgotten,” Lange wrote. “Everyone involved is fine. I got punched. Happens sometimes.”
Earlier this month, fellow comedians began encouraging Lange to pursue a drug treatment program, including Curb Your Enthusiasm star Richard Lewis, A.P. Bio’s Patton Oswalt, and The Big Bang Theory actor Brian Posehn.