Stanford Professor arrested at LAX Airport
Gary Walter Cox, a political science professor from Stanford, was arrested at the Terminal for possessing a grenade. The grenade had no real power, rather it was a souvenir inherited by his late father.
According to Cox, his parents had died last year. He had flown to Los Angeles to gather his parent’s personal effects, in his old childhood home.
Among the things inside his luggage full of mementos was the Mk 2 grenade. Cox had no idea the grenade was even in the things he had taken. It took him a lot of time of looking at the screen before he realized he had a grenade in his personal effects.
Regardless of how much he argued, the police arrested for “possessing a destructive device in a public place”. After paying a half a million dollar bail, Cox was released from the Los Angele County Sheriff’s Department.
As far as Cox knew, the grenade was harmless. He had seen as a child his U.S. Navy father using the grenade as paper weight. The bomb squad defused the World War 2 antique grenade. In retrospect, Cox thought it was all the better, though he was annoyed by the felony charges.
This situation was not unique to Cox. Screeners have found grenades in luggage from Seattle, San Diego and Salt Lake City. According to the Transportation Security Administration, they find dead grenades in luggage on a weekly basis.