Police and travelers speak out about man who brought gun to airp - FOX 10 News | fox10phoenix.com

Police and travelers speak out about man who brought gun to airport

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PHOENIX (KSAZ) - Some people are wondering if a prominent brain researcher ought to have his own head examined after he brought a loaded rifle to Sky Harbor Airport.

Doctor Peter Steinmetz was booked into jail from the incident last Friday. Police and Sky Harbor travelers are speaking out, but the doctor and Barrow are not.

Dr. Steinmetz is the director of the neuroengineering at Barrow. He made a point of demonstrating his second-amendment rights at the airport, bringing an AR-15 rifle to get a cup of coffee and walk around terminal 4.

It's legal to carry a gun at the airport, up until the checkpoints. But it's not legal to point it at two people.

Phoenix Police arrested Steinmetz after he came to Sky Harbor with a rifle and accidentally pointed it at two women. Police say he is experienced with weapons.

"He's gone through training, he understands how to manipulate it, and the dangers. Yet he goes to the airport, takes it off his shoulder, and points it at two people," said Sgt. Steve Martos.

FOX 10 asked if the gun was loaded. Martos replied, "Yes, it was loaded, and yes it had one in the chamber."

Steinmetz was booked for disorderly conduct, he posted bond, got out of jail and refused an interview at his Tempe home. He referred us to his attorney and had no comment. He was on the Barrow Neurological Institute website but now his picture is gone.

Back at Sky Harbor, some people think Steinmetz showed bad judgement, carrying around a loaded semi-automatic rifle.

"Really it makes no sense," said Sheri Baumgart.

But other people do not have a problem with it.

"You know it is our second amendment... so with someone like that, no, it is all about safety. Being in a border state, sure, why not," said Fernando Bragancza.

This is not the first time Dr. Steinmetz brought a gun to the airport and displayed it. He did it last fall, with his son, at Sky Harbor. That time he was not arrested as he did not break any laws.

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