Another PA Gun Owner Faces Possession Charges in New Jersey
Yet another licensed Pennsylvania gun owner is in trouble with New Jersey authorities for illegally transporting a firearm within the Garden State. Twenty-four-year-old Corey Schrier of Bensalem, PA, was stopped at the Holland Tunnel Plaza in Jersey City by a Port Authority police officer who noticed a box of ammunition on the back seat of Schrier’s SUV. Schrier voluntarily told the officer he had a Beretta 9mm in his glove compartment. The loaded weapon was stored with an additional loaded magazine. Police arrested Schrier on gun possession and drug paraphernalia possession charges, and transported him to the Hudson County jail, where bail was set at $50,000.
Schrier, who is licensed to carry a firearm in Pennsylvania, was transporting the weapon through New Jersey in violation of New Jersey laws. He was also attempting to enter New York City via the tunnel, where his possession of the weapon would also have been illegal.
Schrier is the latest in a number of cases where Pennsylvania residents with valid firearms permits were arrested in New Jersey. In January of this year, Raymond Hughes, a 46-year-old Delaware County corrections officer, was arrested after a traffic accident when he voluntarily told responding officers that his personal Glock 9mm pistol was under the front seat of his vehicle. The Gloucester County prosecutor later dropped the weapons charge, which he deemed inappropriate.
The highest profile case in recent years was that of Shaneen Allen. The Philadelphia resident and single mother of two boys had a valid concealed carry permit from Pennsylvania, but was arrested in New Jersey in October 2013 and spent 40 days in jail before being bailed out. She was facing a mandatory minimum three-year sentence if convicted. Governor Christie finally stepped in and pardoned Allen in April 2015. Christie later pardoned three more out-of-staters (one was from Pennsylvania) who had been charged for illegally possessing firearms they legally owned.
These types of arrests and prosecutions could be avoided if New Jersey enacted firearms reciprocity laws and honored out-of-state permits. But since the New Jersey legislature, which has already passed some of the strictest gun control laws in the country, is not inclined to liberalize gun possession, it is up to Pennsylvania residents to educate themselves on New Jersey law before crossing state lines.