Officers stopped Rhymes at about 12:40 a.m. because the sport utility vehicle he was driving had overly tinted windows, Sgt. Mike Wysokowski said. He said officers then smelled alcohol on the rapper's breath.
Rhymes, 34, was taken into custody on a charge of driving while impaired, Wysokowski said. An arraignment was expected later Thursday.
A lawyer for Rhymes, Scott Leemon, declined to comment early Thursday, saying he would address the charges in court.
A telephone message left early Thursday at the New York office of Rhymes' manager, Violator Management, was not immediately returned.
Rhymes, whose real name is Trevor Smith, has had several law enforcement run-ins since last year.
He is tentatively scheduled to go to trial Tuesday on two assault charges. In one of those cases, prosecutors have accused him of beating and kicking his former driver, Edward Hatchett, 39, during a Dec. 26 pay dispute outside Rhymes' lower Manhattan office.
In the other case, Rhymes is charged with assaulting a fan after an Aug. 12 performance at the AmsterJam Music Festival.
While Rhymes was awaiting trial on those charges, he was jailed briefly in February after police said they stopped him for running a red light and discovered he was driving with a suspended license.
In November, Rhymes was issued a ticket after police said they saw him talking on his cell phone while he was driving past a police station.
Police also have sought to question the rapper as a potential witness in the February 2006 shooting death of his bodyguard, Israel Ramirez.
Rhymes, known for outlandish outfits and antic performance style, has hits that include "Put Your Hands Where My Eyes Could See," "Dangerous" and "Touch It." He also has appeared in movies, including "Shaft" and "Finding Forrester."
Putin's official spokesman Dmitry Peskov commented on remarks in the US media about failures in launching nuclear-capable missiles in Russia
More than 5.8 million people voted for Nicholas Maduro at the presidential election in Venezuela. This is more than a quarter of registered voters. Why did those people vote for the man, who, as Western media write, took Venezuela to the brink of collapse?
It has long been understood that the West has been trying to subject Russian borders to total control. We have not seen such activity even during the Cold War