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Virginia Father Held in Turks and Caicos for Lost Ammunition Pleads Guilty


One count of having ammunition in Turks and Caicos (TCI) was accepted by a guy from Virginia. Last month, as he got ready to fly home, airport security found stray bullets in his luggage.

Since February, five Americans have been caught and detained on the islands for having weapons on them. This is because of a new law that says both residents and tourists can get at least 12 years in prison for having weapons. A minimum of three of those Americans told Fox News Digital that they had no idea they had guns in their bags first.

Tyler Wenrich, who is married and has a 1-year-old son, was arrested on April 20 after a wedding party in TCI. He pleaded guilty in court on Monday, when both the prosecutors and his defense team gave oral reasons, according to Fox News Digital.

He thinks that his sentence hearing will happen within the next week.

His father, Michael Wenrich, told Fox News Digital that Wenrich went from Virginia to Florida and then got on a Royal Caribbean cruise for the wedding party without the bullets being found. The cruise ship came in, and the group spent some time in Grand Turk. Wenrich was finally arrested when he was caught on his way home with two loose bullets in his bag.

Wenrich’s plea comes a day after a group of lawmakers from both parties went to TCI to ask government leaders to free the Americans who were being held for having extra bullets in their bags.

The most recent arrest was made on May 15, when Sharitta Grier, a mother from Florida, was taken into custody. They are Ryan Watson from Oklahoma, Bryan Hagerich from Pennsylvania, and Michael Lee Evans from Texas.

The TCI Governor’s Office said in a statement on Monday that the U.S. group brought up five cases of US citizens who are currently in court, along with concerns about their safety and questions about the legal process. “In order to maintain the integrity of the legal process, the Governor confirmed it would not be appropriate to facilitate the delegation’s request to meet with the Chief Justice.”

Additionally, the governor and the premier said that “they cannot intervene or comment on ongoing legal cases before the courts,” the statement went on to say. “They explained that the Turks and Caicos Islands have clear laws prohibiting the possession of firearms and/or ammunition and strict penalties are in place to serve and protect all who reside and visit the Turks and Caicos Islands.”

Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt, Pennsylvania Gov. Josh Shapiro, and Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin wrote to Turks and Caicos Gov. Dileeni Daniel-Selvaratnam last week to ask her to free Watson, Hagerich, and Wenrich.

“These people recently traveled to your beautiful territory for fun, like thousands of other Americans do every year,” the governors wrote in a letter shared with Fox News Digital. “All of them have said that they didn’t mean to bring weapons into Turks and Caicos and that any weapons they left in their luggage by accident were the result of legal behavior in the US.” From what we know, none of them had guns on them.

It was just recently made public by the State Department that Americans “can be arrested for having any ammunition, even a single stray shell or casing” in many countries. Travelers were told by the department to check their pockets and “every nook and cranny” of their suitcases “before traveling to avoid running into problems overseas.”

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