Mike Epps was briefly detained this week after he was found with a loaded handgun at an airport.
According to the Indianapolis Star, the incident took place at around 9 a.m. Sunday at the Indianapolis International Airport, where Transportation Security Administration officers discovered a Smith & Wesson .38-caliber in his backpack. Authorities say the weapon was also loaded with four rounds of ammunition, but none were in the chamber.
Although his weapon was confiscated, Epps not was arrested over the incident. The comedian, who was in Indianapolis for his Straight Jokes, No Chaser Comedy Tour, addressed the situation via Instagram on Wednesday, insisting it was a simple mistake.
“I wanna apologize if you see any negativity about a gun charge at an airport,” he said in a video. “I had a long night, I had a show in my hometown, and I literally forgot that I had my pistol in my bag.”
Epps said he travels with a gun for protection and security reasons, and is not using the firearm for illegal or shady purposes.
“I carry money all the time, I be having jewelry on, and these dudes is out here robbing people,” he continued. “So I just want to make sure I make it clear that I ain’t out here doing nothing wrong. But I keep a gun on me ’cause I gotta protect myself. Sometimes I ain’t with my security. So, I just wanna let y’all know that I’m still on some positive vibes and sorry that it happened. All I can tell you is the world is crazy. Stay strapped.”
A spokesperson for the Marion County prosecutor’s office said the team is reviewing the case, and it’s unclear if the team will pursue criminal charges.
“These matters rarely result in criminal charges,” Leffler Michael Leffler told the Associated Press. “I think it is important to note that the burden of proof required by statute and case law requires you to prove whether an individual knowingly or intentionally brought the firearm. Generally speaking, the most common circumstance is that firearms located by TSA or airport police are unintentionally left in bags.”