• Police: Metro pastor caught with loaded gun at airport

    Updated:

    ATLANTA - A metro Atlanta pastor accused of trying to board a flight with a weapon could face civil penalties as well as jail time.

    William Henry Murphy III is pastor of the Dream Center Church of Atlanta.

    Murphy had a 9mm Taurus handgun loaded with 10 rounds of ammunition in his carry-on bag as he placed it in the X-ray machine at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, according to Atlanta police.

    Channel 2’s Tom Jones watched as Murphy appeared in Clayton County court on unauthorized possession of a weapon charges.

    Murphy is a well-known pastor and gospel artist who just days ago was elevated to the office of bishop.

    He’s the 47th person this year accused of carrying a weapon through a security checkpoint. 

    Jones tried to get Murphy’s side of the story but his wife, Danielle, had no comment.

    Murphy does have a license to carry a firearm but he would have to check his weapon before going through security if he wanted to take it with him during his flight.

    In addition to a $2,500 bond he could face civil penalties up to $7,500.

    Passengers at the airport told Jones they wondered what he was thinking.

    "I think anybody who attempts to bring a gun on a plane after 9-11 is not OK," one traveler said.

    Some travelers don’t buy the excuse that someone would forget a weapon in their bag.

    "I don't see how you would forget that you had that type of weapon in your luggage,” a man told Jones.

    Others had a different reaction.

    "I guess if it's locked up and he's licensed to do it, I guess it's OK," another traveler said.


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