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New Jersey man arrested with revolver at BWI airport

TSA officers detected this .38 caliber handgun in a passenger’s carry-on bag at BWI Airport on Wednesday, June 3.
TSA officers detected this .38 caliber handgun in a passenger’s carry-on bag at BWI Airport on Wednesday, June 3. (Courtesy photo)

A New Jersey man was arrested at BWI Thurgood Marshall Airport after a .38-caliber revolver was discovered in his bags during a security check, Transportation Security Administration and Maryland Transportation Authority Police said.

John Charles Penberthy, 51, of Voorhees, N.J., has been charged with a handgun violation in relation to the incident, which occurred about 6:37 a.m. Wednesday, law enforcement officials said.

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The revolver was spotted by a TSA agent as Penberthy's carry-on bag passed through an X-ray machine, officials said. The gun was confiscated by MdTA Police officers who responded to the scene and arrested Penberthy.

Firearms are not permitted in carry-on bags and for travel must be unloaded, stored properly and declared to an airline.

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Officials said Penberthy, who was ticketed to fly to Philadelphia, told TSA agents that he had received the gun as a gift from one of his relatives and was bringing it home to New Jersey.

Penberthy could not be reached for comment.

The TSA stopped 14 guns at BWI in 2014, 14 at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport and 9 at Washington Dulles International Airport. In 2013, 27 guns were seized: 13 at BWI, 6 at Reagan and 8 at Dulles.

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