Coolio – best know for "Gangsta's Paradise" – released a video statement on Saturday
Rapper Coolio was arrested at Los Angeles International Airport on Saturday for allegedly trying to bring a stolen gun through TSA, according to multiple reports.
According to ABC 7, airport police stopped a 39-year-old man after TSA agents detected a firearm in a carry-on bag. According to the BBC, the bag was later determined to belong to the man’s 53-year-old traveling companion, who had already gone through security and boarded his flight.
According to ABC 7, the 53-year-old man – later identified as Coolio – claimed ownership of the bag and was removed from the plane. Both Coolio (real name Artis Leon Ivey Jr.) and the 39-year-old man were arrested for possession of a stolen loaded firearm and booked at LAPD Pacific Division jail, according to ABC 7.
According to TMZ, Coolio’s rep said the firearm belongs to a member of Coolio’s security team and that he was fully cooperating with police. The rapper’s manager did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The “Gangsta’s Paradise” rapper later released a video statement on YouTube late Saturday, calling the incident a “misunderstanding” and showing that he was out on bail, enjoying a dinner at P.F. Chang’s.
“I don’t know what’s going to be the result of this in the future but for now I’m fine and I appreciate everybody’s concerns,” he said. “We gotta push on and try to forward, forward hip-hop.”
He also added that he would be continuing with his planned appearances, including a show in Indio, California, on Sunday.
This is not the first time that Coolio has had a brush with the law at LAX. He was arrested at the airport in March 2009 after drugs were allegedly found on his bag while he was going through TSA. He was also convicted of being a felon in possession of a firearm in February 1999 and was given 10 days in jail.