Day by Day

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

US - Man Arrested At JIA After Gun Found In Suitcase

I hope they investigate this further as it raises some questions for me.

"JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- A man was arrested at Jacksonville International Airport on Monday after an undeclared handgun he admitted to owning was found in the checked luggage of his sister-in-law, according to police.

Ahmad Abdallah Abu Ghanam, 38, of Jacksonville, was arrested by airport police and booked into the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office."


Why did he put the gun in her luggage? Perhaps because her name is Melissa Schoonover and he thought she wouldn't be checked as closely as he would be given his name.

"According to authorities, the gun was found by Transportation Safety Authority screeners during a routine baggage screening. The TSA said the .38-caliber semiautomatic pistol was wrapped in aluminum foil in a suitcase belonging to Melissa Schoonover, who identified herself to police as Abu Ghanam's sister-in-law. ...

According to the police report, Abu Ghanam told officers he bought the gun on the street about a month ago for $110. He said he wrapped the gun in foil so it would not slide around in the suitcase."


Un huh.

"Contacted by Channel 4, Schoonover said they were traveling to Jordan to seek medical treatment for her lupus."


Here is the treatment for lupus.

"The treatments for lupus can be as varied and individual as the disease itself and may change over time. But common-sense measures, such as rest, protection from sunlight, exercise, not smoking and a healthy diet are important for everyone with lupus."


I don't know much about the disease and don't know if Jordan is an expert at its treatment, but this sounds fishy.

"She said one reason Abu Ghanam didn't think packing the gun was a big deal because she said he has done it in the past, packing a starter gun in his checked luggage during a previous trip to Jordan."


If he didn't think it was a big deal, why did he pack it in her luggage? Why did he take a starter pistol on a previous trip? Was that a dry run?

""He was shocked that they actually took it out and picked up and that they were arresting him for it when it wasn't loaded, there were no bullets in it and it was in a checked in bag, where he couldn't even get to it," Schoonover said."


Maybe this was another dry run or maybe he was going to get bullets stashed somewhere. Were their bags checked all the way to Jordan or was he going to access them in Chicago before boarding the Jordan flight?

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