CHICAGO — Prosecutors dropped all charges Wednesday against a man who claimed an airport security guard misheard him when she thought he'd said a sexual device in his backpack actually was a bomb.
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Mardin Amin, who appeared in a Cook County Circuit Court Wednesday, has said he actually told the female security guard at O'Hare International Airport last month that the small, black object was a "pump" — as in a penis pump.
His attorney, Eileen O'Neill-Burke, said Thursday that "humiliation aside, the system worked" and the case has had the right outcome.
Prosecutors chose to follow the lead of the Transportation Safety Administration, which recently concluded that the matter did not warrant prosecution, said Cook County state's attorney spokesman John Gorman.
Amin, 29, of Skokie, had been charged with felony disorderly conduct and faced up to three years in prison if convicted.
O'Neill-Burke explained earlier that her client was embarrassed to explain the object to the security guard in front of his mother, who was traveling with him — so he whispered. The guard misunderstood, and thought he had said "bomb," she said.
The attorney added that Amin, an Iraqi, has a thick accent and she herself had trouble understanding him until he brought the pump to her office. She said she recently learned Arabic speakers sometimes have trouble distinguishing "p" and "b" sounds.
O'Neill-Burke said Thursday that Amin's focus now is joining his two young children, ages 2 and 3, who traveled on to Iraq without him after the incident.
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