U.S. police officer detained in Taiwan for gun is back at work

Santa Monica Police Internal Affairs Department is investigating the case

California police officer Noell Grant's gun.

California police officer Noell Grant's gun. (By Central News Agency)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – The police officer from the United States who faced detention after discovering her handgun in her carry-on luggage during a stopover at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport has returned home and is back at work at the Santa Monica Police Department in California, reports said Wednesday.

Noell Grant arrived back in the Los Angeles area last Friday and started work on Monday, but she could face disciplinary action, according to a report by the Mercury News.

A spokesman for the SMPD said he was told no charges were filed in Taiwan against Grant but it was not clear whether she had been allowed to take her gun back with her. Internal Affairs was conducting an administrative review to determine whether disciplinary measures were needed.

On April 13, Grant boarded a China Airlines flight at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) but only discovered the gun and six bullets in a bag during a stopover at Taoyuan on her way to a holiday in Thailand. She reported the incident to the Taiwanese authorities, who barred her from leaving the country during the investigation.

She could have faced a maximum of two years in prison under local gun laws, Taiwanese reports said.

The incident raised questions about how a passenger could have taken a gun past checkpoints at LAX. The Transportation Security Administration admitted that standard procedures were not followed and that its screeners at the airport had missed the firearm, the Mercury News reported.

A lieutenant with the Los Angeles Airport Police who traveled with Grant to Asia issued a tweet to thank the American Institute in Taiwan and the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs for the assistance they received.