LAPD's homeland security chief gives up his guns after baggage screeners find unlicensed weapon

Saturday, October 16th 2004, 9:33 am
By: News On 6

LOS ANGELES (AP) _ The head of the police department's counterterrorism bureau has turned in the unlicensed handgun that airport screeners found in his carryon luggage last month.

``He did it voluntarily,'' Sgt. Catherine Plows, a police spokeswoman, said Friday. ``He just thought there was a lot of unnecessary press about it when there didn't need to be.''

The police department had issued John Miller the .38-caliber Smith & Wesson, but it was never registered because of a paperwork glitch, officials said.

Miller, an ABC-TV reporter before he was hired for the security job, was off duty and traveling to New York to tape a farewell message for Barbara Walters, his retiring former ``20/20'' co-host, when airport officials discovered the gun.

He also turned in a second, licensed handgun and a sport utility vehicle equipped with a siren and emergency lights. Both were issued by the police department.