In a confusing case in New Jersey, a 64-year old man, Robert Lintner, was arrested Friday after his wife allegedly stabbed him in the neck and responding officers found he had more black powder stored than legally allowed.
Although officials state that the firearms and ammunition removed from Linter’s home are legally owned, they took exception to his storage of an estimated quantity of some 300 pounds of black powder. New Jersey law limits powder quantities to just 50 pounds and as such Linter was formally charged with creating a widespread risk of hazard.
“Our goal is to document and remove the gunpowder and render the house safe,” Saddle Brook Police Chief Robert Kugler told The Record. “Certainly the amount that is in there has a potential to be a hazard not only to the house but to the adjacent neighbors as well.”
Police responded to Lintner’s home early Friday morning in response to an emergency call following a domestic dispute in which his wife, Eileen Lintner, 65, allegedly stabbed him in the neck with a kitchen knife. Once Linter had been treated, and his wife arrested and booked on charges of second-degree aggravated assault and illegal possession of a weapon, police inquired about guns in the house.
When Linter refused access to his locked gun safes, law enforcement officers requested and received a search warrant. The Cliffview Pilot reported local firefighters were called in to use the Jaws of Life to penetrate the senior’s gun safe security.
This led officers, with the help of city public works employees, to temporarily evacuate the neighborhood while they cracked Linter’s gun vaults and removed an estimated 200 firearms and 300 pounds of black powder working late into the night.
Police found so many guns that reports state they had to seek an extension of their original search warrant window past 11 p.m. and remove firearms dumped into trashcans to help speed up the process.
Members of the Bergen County Police Department’s Bomb Squad were called in to assist with the confiscation of the powder. Besides the 50 pound limit, state law also mandates that quantities of powder larger than 5 pounds be stored in a Type 4 magazine, which could mean that Lintner’s stocks may have been improperly stored.
Neighbors in the community told local media that the Linter couple, longtime residents, were quiet and rarely caused “any commotion in that house.”
Both Linters have posted bond and been released from jail with orders not to have contact with each other. They are scheduled for separate court appearances on Tuesday. Until at least then, Saddle Brook officials will maintain custody of Lintner’s firearm, ammo and powder collection. The city between now and then will be cataloging the impounded arms and munitions to ensure whether all are legal, according to Kugler.
“To some degree, I feel bad for Mr. Lintner because he was the victim of a domestic situation and it turned in to him being a defendant of possessing an unlawful amount of gun powder,” said Kugler.