Troopers: Traffic stop in Perth leads to illegal AK-47, two handguns, Alabama man’s arrest

A picture released by the state police of the AK-47 and other items seized by troopers. Credit: State Police, background file

A picture released by the state police of the AK-47 and other items seized by troopers. Credit: State Police, background file

PERTH – A weekend traffic stop in the Town of Perth led to the discovery of an illegal AK-47, two handguns and an Alabama man’s arrest, state police said.

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Joseph W. Mathis, 34, of Jacksonville, Ala., was arrested and charged with one count of second-degree criminal possession of a weapon, two counts of third-degree criminal possession of a weapon-assault rifle and ammo clip, felonies, and misdemeanor possession of a large capacity feeding device.

The incident happened just before 3 p.m. Saturday in Perth when troopers stopped Mathis for a traffic infraction on Route 30, state police said.

While speaking with Mathis, the trooper spotted a gun box on the rear seat. The trooper soon learned the box contained an illegal AK-47 rifle and an empty 30-round magazine, state police said.

A search of the vehicle also soon uncovered two loaded handguns and multiple high-capacity magazines.

Mathis does not have a permit to carry a handgun in New York State, troopers said.

Mathis was arraigned and released under pre-trial conditions. He is due back in court next week.

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