The Sideshow

Watch out: Police arrest man who wore bomb-themed timepiece

Eric Pfeiffer
The Sideshow

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Should police have arrested a man after he wore this watch to the airport? (Alameda County Sheriff's Office)

California teacher and artist Geoffrey McGann made a fashion faux pas when he showed up at Oakland International Airport wearing a watch that looked like the timing device for a bomb.

But the San Jose Mercury News reports that police have decided to not file charges against McGann, 49, who was temporarily arrested after being removed from an airport security line last week. He was released after posting $150,000 bail.

"It's something for TSA to be vigilant, but it's something else to by hypervigilant," McGann's attorney Douglas Horngrad said Monday. Horngrad said he is acting to have the arrest removed from McGann's record.

Nonetheless, Sgt. J.D. Nelson said the watch, which has a toggle switch with wires and fuses sticking out of it, posed a legitimate concern. A bomb squad was called in to examine the watch and determined it was not connected to an explosive device. Even after clearing McGann of any legal wrongdoing, Nelson told the Mercury News that wearing the watch to the airport still showed "a lack of good judgment" and that McGann "was not being very smart."

Horngrad said McGann has worn the watch through airport security a number of times, even receiving permission from the Transportation Security Administration to wear the watch aboard a recent flight departing from Los Angeles International Airport.

For the record, Horngrad noted that even if authorities aren't fond of his artistic sensibilities, McGann "is not an activist or a terrorist."

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