msnbc.com news services
updated 5/19/2011 7:18:44 PM ET 2011-05-19T23:18:44

A 26-year-old pastor from Georgia charged with illegal possession of ammunition after Jamaica customs officials allegedly found a bullet in his luggage will be coming home, his wife said Thursday.

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Steven Carter was charged Tuesday and spent two nights in jail after a .22-caliber bullet was found in his bag by airport inspectors in the north coast tourist mecca of Montego Bay, Jamaican police said Thursday in a statement.

Carter's wife, Erin, told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution that Carter was freed after a Thursday hearing and the couple expects to return to their Athens home Friday.

"We have to wait 24 hours and then we can come home," she said in a brief telephone interview from the jail.

A family friend, Jeff Williams, told the newspaper that Carter hadn't fired a gun since his squirrel-hunting days as a child and that he'd owned the bag at least that long. He said Carter didn't know how the bullet had gotten into his luggage.

The Carters reportedly had traveled to Jamaica to vacation at a resort in Montego Bay.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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