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CNN BREAKING NEWS

Interview with Willie Williams

Aired September 5, 2002 - 13:38   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


KYRA PHILLIPS, CNN ANCHOR: Live now to Atlanta's Hartsfield International Airport, where our Brian Cabell is standing by with more on the man that was arrested this morning at the airport with a gun.
Brian, what do you know?

BRIAN CABELL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Kyra, it is not quite as alarming as it might seem initially. Apparently what happened was this. At 7 a.m., a man tried to go through the magnetometer at the security checkpoint. It was set off. He was then was brought over to the side. He was wanded by one the security officials. And at that point, he apparently told this official, yes, I have a gun on me. I forgot about it, it is no big deal. But obviously, a very big deal.

He had a .32 in a holster, so he was arrested at that point, and right now, we believe he is in jail in Clayton County not far from here.

With me right now is Brendan (ph) Willie Williams. He is the federal security director for the airport. What is this man being charged with right now, because clearly he was not brandishing it, he was not threatening anybody, but this is a very serious offense.

WILLIE WILLIAMS, FEDERAL SECURITY DIRECTOR, HARTSFIELD INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT: It is still being investigated, but the minimum he is going to be charged with a concealed, deadly weapon at this time, and other local charges.

CABELL: He was taken away in handcuffs, so this is clearly a very significant arrest for you...

WILLIAMS: Well it is a significant event. Here in Atlanta, it doesn't get the publicity, but at least two, or three time as month, we arrest people. Usually they are carrying firearms in their checked baggage, but this individual had it in a holster on his person.

CABELL: And what specifically did he say when it was discovered that he had this on him?

WILLIAMS: Well, I won't get into his comments, but after the alarm -- when he went through the magnetometers, and the private security screener wanded him, and the wand signaled something, he voluntarily made an affirmative statement that he had a firearm. She -- he or she immediately notified their supervisor, and the Atlanta Police Department, which were about 10 or 15 feet behind, they secured the weapon from him, and placed him in handcuffs, and took him away.

CABELL: Was he going to try to get on a plane?

WILLIAMS: No. He had permission, if he cleared security, to meet an elderly person who was inbound.

CABELL: Do we know why he would have a gun in a holster on him? Was that his profession?

WILLIAMS: That is still being under investigation right now.

CABELL: Is a local man?

WILLIAMS: I'm not sure.

CABELL: And what are the charges at this point?

WILLIAMS: Other than carrying a concealed deadly weapon, we don't know all the charges right now. It is still being investigated. He is in custody.

CABELL: And Atlanta police will handle it from here?

WILLIAMS: The Atlanta police made the initial arrest, and he will be taken for housing and formal prosecution in Clayton County, which is the joint jurisdiction here at the airport.

CABELL: Willie Williams, thank you very much. We appreciate it.

So once again, what we have here is a man arrested about five or six hours ago, not threatening the gun. Not threatening in any way. He simply had it on him. He said it was an accident, and he has been taken away. He is now in custody -- Kyra, back to you.

PHILLIPS: Pretty serious accident. Brian Cabell at Hartsfield International Airport. Thank you.

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