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Guy Who Got Arrested At LAX For Having A Grenade Is A Stanford Professor

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The man who was arrested at LAX earlier this week for having a grenade in his luggage is apparently a political science professor at Stanford. Gary Walter Cox, 58, was arrested Tuesday after TSA found a grenade in his carry-on luggage. Cox says the grenade had been his father’s, and he had forgotten it was there. His parents had died in the past year, and Cox had flown to Los Angeles to gather belongings and clear out his childhood home in Palos Verdes, he told the Los Angeles Times:

“At first, I didn’t even remember that I had it in there. It took me quite a long while peering at the screen before I understood what it was.”

Cox says his father was a retired U.S. Navy captain who served in World War II. His father had been using the grenade as a paperweight and would even pull out the pin now and then. Cox was going to give it to his 23-year-old son as a memento, but LAPD bomb squad had to destroy it instead.

“If I’d thought about it at all, I wouldn’t have put it into my carry-on luggage,” Cox said. “I was surprised to hear that it had some oomph left in it.”

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Cox was booked on a felony charge of possessing a destructive device in a public place and was released Tuesday evening on a $500,000 bail. Five flights were delayed, affecting about 800 passengers.

Luckily for Cox, the charges against him have been dropped.

The college professor isn’t the only one to make such a seemingly glaring mistake. TSA says they find inert grenades in luggage on a weekly basis.