CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Officials say the state is voluntarily dismissing the charges against a former Charlotte air traffic controller who was accused of having a weapon of mass destruction.
In Nov. 2017, 30-year-old Paul George Dandan was charged with possession of a weapon of mass destruction, acquiring a weapon of mass destruction and transporting a weapon of mass destruction.
Dandan, who was an air traffic controller at Charlotte-Douglas, was accused of having a homemade pipe bomb he got from another man.
At that time, the FAA also confirmed that they had “terminated [Dandan’s] access to the facility and is investigating.”
On Monday, July 1, the state dismissed the charges against Dandan.
Officials say the man who gave Dandan the items is now dead and his case has been abated.
When the incident was first reported, officials said Dandan’s roommate called police when the roommate saw the item and didn’t know what it was.
Officials say Dandan was cooperative with police and told them he believed the items to be a firework. The item itself was found in the recycling bin. It was a cardboard tube with a powder residue.
The residue was reportedly tested and officials say analysis showed that it was pyrodex, a black powder substitute that burns cleaner.
Officials say it is a product commonly sold in sporting goods stores, and stated that it is possible that there was a small amount that would not have done much damage had it been ignited.
Officials say there is no evidence in this case that the device was designed to be a weapon.
Dandan reportedly told police that the other man gave him the item since didn’t feel it was safe to have at his home because he had children.
Officials say Dandan didn’t say or express anything that indicated that he intended to use the device as a weapon.
Officials said the state would be unable to prove this case beyond a reasonable doubt and that there is no evidence that Dandan took the item and intended to use it as a weapon in any way.
Also, officials say, if there were any evidence, the state would be unable to prove that the item(s) was a weapon given the lack of propellant powder.
As a result, the state is voluntarily dismissing the charge.