updated 03/11/2011 AT 5:00 PM ET
•originally published 03/13/2011 AT 9:35 PM ET
Felicia “Snoop” Pearson was singled out in a recent drug raid because she played a dealer on The Wire, her rep says.
“Felicia grew up where high crime rates, drug use and violence are the norm. Felicia has overcome numerous hardships in her lifetime. She does not expect these hardships to be used as an excuse for illegal activities,” read a statement issued Friday, several days after the actress from Baltimore was arrested on drug charges. The 30-year-old played a drug dealer and assassin on the HBO show, and now believes her role was a hindrance.
“Felicia has made strong statements against drugs and violence of any kind … [and has] been recognized for her efforts in encouraging youth and formerly incarcerated women to make positive changes for themselves,” her rep adds.
Wire creator David Simon, meanwhile, blogged on Slate.com that “this young lady has, from her earliest moments, had one of the hardest lives imaginable.”
He continues: “She worked hard as an actor and was entirely professional, but the entertainment industry as a whole does not offer a great many roles for those who can portray people from the other America. There are, in fact, relatively few stories told about the other America.”
Simon does make clear that “the opportunities and experiences of her life do not correspond in any way with my own, and her America is different from my own. I am therefore ill-equipped to be her judge in this matter.”
Lastly, Pearson’s rep says she hopes to return back to filming in Philadelphia, where she is working on three films. “She wants her friends and fans to know that she is keeping her head up, shoulders back and that she is prepared to fight these new charges against her,” the rep says.