Bullets passed through three airports
An American tourist who came to
Cayman for Thanksgiving had her stay extended after an airport security guard
found four live rounds of ammunition in her handbag.
Dara L. Lindsay, 30, pleaded guilty
in Summary Court on Wednesday to possession of four .357 cartridges without a
After hearing the facts of the case
and mitigation, Magistrate Nova Hall said she had no basis on which to conclude
that the ammunition was purchased here or brought here for any wrong purpose.
There was no basis to conclude that the ammunition was here for any reason
other than a mistake. The magistrate noted there had been “a spate of trouble”
involving firearms in Cayman and the court takes a serious view of any breach
of the Firearms Law. She imposed a fine of $1,000.
Crown Counsel Candia James said
Lindsay was leaving the island on Sunday afternoon, 28 November, and was being
processed by airport security personnel. One of the guards operating the X-ray
machine became suspicious of items in Lindsay’s handbag. A search revealed four
live .357 cartridges.
Police were called and officers
asked if she had any knowledge of the items. Lindsay said she was a licensed firearm
holder in the US and had transported her firearm to her parents’ home for safekeeping
while she was gone. She said she had taken the ammunition out of the gun, put
it in her purse and then forgot she had it.
Defence Attorney John Furniss said
Lindsay had accepted full responsibility from the very beginning. When she
transported the gun to her parents, she did not want it loaded. Then, in the
rush of getting ready to travel, she forgot the cartridges in her bag.
He pointed out that the bag went
through security in the US. Lindsay had travelled from Springfield, Missouri,
and nothing was detected there. She then went through the airport in Atlanta,
but he was not sure whether any further check took place before she continued
to Cayman. “If she walked through any X-ray, nothing was detected,” Mr. Furniss
Lindsay spent the American
Thanksgiving (25 November) here and was on her way back home, he emphasised.
Having the cartridges was a genuine mistake on her part and she apologised to
all concerned, he said.
Mr. Furniss handed up a report from
the Caymanian Compass of 6 July, 2006, about a tourist who mistakenly brought a
loaded handgun to Cayman when he and his wife came to celebrate their anniversary.
In that case, also, the gun was not detected until the couple was leaving the
Island. He was sentenced to the seven days he had spent in custody and fined
Mr. Furniss said Lindsay was not
kept in custody until her court date, but did spend time in a cell after her
arrest until she was interviewed and then bailed.
He added that she had first come to
Cayman on a cruise; she liked it so much she came back for Thanksgiving “and
would like to return again.”