Former mayor vouches for OKC airport bombing suspect

Thursday, August 11th 2005, 2:11 pm
By: News On 6

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) _ A former Oklahoma City mayor says a man arrested for carrying an explosive device in an airline carry-on bag is a "fine young man and no terrorist."

Charles Dreyling was taken into custody yesterday at the Will Rogers World Airport security checkpoint.

Ex-Mayor Kirk Humphreys, who also is Dreyling's landlord, says Dreyling created what he called a "glorified firecracker" and forgot it was in his luggage. No details have been provided as to why or how Dreyling created the device.

An assistant US attorney describes the device as a carbon-dioxide cartridge with a black-power detonator.

No terrorist connection has been established in the case.

Dreyling was heading to Philadelphia from Oklahoma City when he was stopped. He's due in court Thursday.

Dreyling, 24, was going through the security checkpoint at Will Rogers World Airport on Wednesday when a Transportation Security Administration employee noticed something suspicious in his bag on the X-ray machine, Johnson said.

Dreyling, who lives in Norman, had planned to take a Delta flight that travels to Philadelphia through Atlanta, airport spokeswoman Karen Carney said.

He was at the Oklahoma County jail on a federal hold and was to appear before a federal magistrate Thursday afternoon, the U.S. Attorney's office said. He could face charges related to possessing an explosive device at an airport, Johnson said.

The arrest did not disrupt any flights, Carney said.