Folks on social media are hopping mad with comedian Mike Epps for bringing a kangaroo on stage during his comedy routine in Detroit - where the distressed marsupial socked him in the face. Epps egged on the handler to make the kangaroo partake in the show, and grabbed the leash, holding the animal for a photo. At one point it appeared the kangaroo punched at Epps, who took off running.
PETA said Epps including a local kangaroo in his stage act caused distress for the innocent animal as it was wrongfully paraded on stage.
Javon Stacks, the kangaroo's handler, had a different story.
Stacks insists the kangaroo was not hurt in any way, and that he has the proper licenses to work with animals in this manner.
The kangaroo made national headlines after a Snapchat video showed the animal on the streets of Detroit.
The Hangover star was performing a music-based segment in Detroit, Michigan when a trainer appeared with the kangaroo on a leash.
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"It was for a birthday party a couple weeks ago", Stacks told the website.
"He's bigger, so there's not enough space for him to walk around in someone's home, so we brought him outside so the kids could see him hop", he said. Lisa Lange, senior vice president for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, said the animal was "subjected to a great deal of stress by being dragged in front of a boisterous crowd and forced to 'dance'". "When schools invite us ... we perform in the gymnasium".
Footage uploaded to social media and TMZ.com shows the handler carrying the animal around when it tried to leave the stage.
A video, captured and published by The Shade Room, shows the comedian feeding a banana to a Kangaroo. The post was later deleted.
In his post on Sunday night, Epps also seemed to apologize for trying to defend the incident.