Chocolate Factory Owner Arrested at O'Hare for Gun in Bag

The owner of a chocolate factory in South Bend, Indiana, was arrested at Chicago’s O’Hare airport late Wednesday after TSA screeners found a gun in his briefcase.

The weapon was not loaded, but Mark Tarner was arrested and held in Cook County jail until he posted bond the next day.

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Man ‘Forgot’ about Unloaded Gun

Tarner and his family had been enroute to a vacation in Mexico when the incident took place. The man said he “totally forgot about” the gun in his bag, and TSA screeners have heard that one before.

Last year, airport security officers confiscated 1,200 handguns from luggage and in most cases the owners said they’d forgotten they had the weapon with them.

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Nothing Sweet about This Arrest

Tarner told WSBT TV he’d kept the unloaded gun in a hidden compartment of his briefcase for protection. Said the chocolatier of this decidedly bitter experience, “I’ve had bad days but this was a very bad day.”

Meanwhile, Tarner’s family traveled on to Mexico without him. He has a date in a Chicago courtroom on Tuesday.

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Published: January 6, 2012