Barrow Neurological Institute Purges Website of AR-15-Toting Doctor, Peter Steinmetz

Categories: Guns

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Channel 5 News
Peter Steinmetz, a brain researcher at the Barrow Neurological Institute in Phoenix, can be seen with an AR-15 in this airport surveillance video taken on Friday.
The prestigious Barrow Neurological Institute of Phoenix isn't saying much about the airport arrest on Friday of AR-15 toting top brain scientist Peter Nathan Steinmetz.

The institute is, however, erasing Steinmetz from its website in what appears to be a move designed to curb the dreadful PR arising from this embarrassing scandal.

See also:
-Peter Nathan Steinmetz, Barrow Brain Scientist, Arrested at Airport With AR-15

Steinmetz and his son brought guns to the airport in November of 2013, too, but they weren't arrested. Phoenix police say it's not illegal to bring firearms into the airport -- the public can't bring firearms past the security checkpoints, is all. Steinmetz was arrested on Friday because, police claim, the muzzle of his semi-automatic rifle was pointed briefly at two people as he removed it from his shoulder.

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Carmelle Malkovich, spokeswoman for Dignity Health's St. Joseph's Hospital and Medical Center, home of the Barrow institute, told New Times this morning that, no, we could not photograph the "Steinmetz Laboratory." Nor did the Barrow have a new public comment, she advised, except to say, curiously, that, "I do want to clarify that Dr. Steinmetz is a part time researcher and does not treat patients."

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Peter Nathan Steinmetz's mug shot following his arrest on Friday at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport.
Our previous story never said he did. As we were the first to report yesterday, Steinmetz is (was?) the principal investigator of the institute's Neuroengineering/Human Neurophysiology Laboratory. A Johns Hopkins-trained M.D. and PhD, Steinmetz has co-authored more than a dozen peer-reviewed papers about the structure of the brain.

Something may be wrong with his brain, as many in the public have speculated. After all, most people wouldn't bring AR-15s to one of the nation's busiest airports just to buy a cup of coffee. No information has been released as to why Steinmetz took the gun to the airport, but police speculate it was to make the point that he could do it legally. Still, a highly educated brain scientist should be smart enough to realize that an activist-style stunt like this would cause bad PR for his employer, which could lead to a problem with his job. So it appears something else is going on here, other than just gun-rights activism. (Maybe he's just worried that the airport lacks security and paranoid about his personal safety.)

The Barrow institute, via Malkovich, said yesterday, "We are aware of the situation and are taking it very seriously. At present this issue is being handled by Human Resources and our policy is not to comment on HR matters."

This morning, though, we noticed the Barrow website had made some telling changes.

Steinmetz's bio page has been deleted:

http://www.thebarrow.org/Research/Neuroengineering/204299

A cached version is still extant in Google.

This page:

http://www.thebarrow.org/Research/Neuroengineering/index.htm

has experienced a name change as of today from "Steinmetz Laboratory" to "Neuroengineering Laboratory." Whatever glory Steinmetz enjoyed from the lab-branding has been relegated to medical waste.

Finally, http://www.thebarrow.org/Research/Hypothalamic_Hamartoma/204299, another page dedicated to Steinmetz and his research, has been deleted.

Malkovich hasn't responded yet to questions about the website changes.

Meantime, we and other news media have requests submitted to Phoenix police for police reports on the incidents from Friday and 2013.

In addition to his job at the Barrow, Steinmetz is an associate professor for the University of Arizona's College of Medicine in Phoenix; the UofA hasn't removed his webpage from its site -- yet, anyway.

Steinmetz has reportedly been released on a $5,000 bond. We've been unable to reach him so far. Check back for updates.

UPDATE: Carrie Harmon, a spokeswoman with the Transportation Security Administration, tells New Times that the TSA is charged with preventing people from bringing firearms onto aircraft. Beyond, that, "it's a law enforcement issue." We asked her if TSA has a policy for its agents that lets them know what to do if they see someone at the airport with a semi-automatic rifle. She later emailed with following statement:

"As we discussed, federal law prohibits passengers from carrying firearms onto an aircraft. TSA screens for firearms at the checkpoint, and our officers alert law enforcement if we find them. A law enforcement officer takes possession of the weapon, interviews the passenger, and determines any criminal penalties. TSA has the ability to access a civil penalty of up to $11,000 for bringing a firearm at the checkpoint. More on firearms at: http://www.tsa.gov/traveler-information/firearms-and-ammunition

"Firearms in the public areas (which do not include areas beyond the security check points) are regulated by individual airports in compliance with state and local laws, which vary among jurisdictions.

"If TSA employees see illegal or suspicious activity in the public area of the airport, they alert law enforcement. In addition, if a TSA officer sees a firearm in the public area--regardless of state or local laws at that airport--he or she would alert law enforcement. For example, when an individual brought a firearm to PHX on July 25, a TSA officer was among those who reported this to law enforcement. In these cases, law enforcement responds, investigates and determines the response."

Got a tip? Send it to: Ray Stern.

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72 comments
scottsdalebubbe
scottsdalebubbe

@Grace Hall -- What part of "WELL-REGULATED MILITIA" do you not understand?  And I don't mean self-appointed, flag-waving, back-woods "militia" of the ignorant and the crazy with fantasies of being able to fight off a mega trillion $ backed Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force, Coast Guard, etc.   

Mark Schultz
Mark Schultz

WHAT HAS HAPPENED TO OUR SOCIETY? Guy could find some cure for any number of brain illnesses and they just let him go for a mistake not on company time? Replace him with Justin Beiber...Thats how stupid and inane this is.

wtf...
wtf...

he was just doing brain research to see how the human brain reacts to guns in the different environments and habitats nothing else folks... good work doctor evil pork!

Mickee7
Mickee7

"I do want to clarify that Dr. Steinmetz is a part time researcher and does not treat patients."

Why was a part-time researcher 'directing' a lab that was named after him? Does Barrow hand out titles and lab space to part time employees?  This doesn't sound right. 

Cris Cross
Cris Cross

Im guessing he has neurological issues.

Stephen Guida
Stephen Guida

Good thing to do. Anybody who brings an assault weapon to an airport to "get a cup of coffee" is showing some horrifically bad judgment at least, and more likely serious mental impairment.

Mike Bowers
Mike Bowers

Grace, I'm not a historian, but I am an avid reader. I do remember that Ronald Regan supported and signed the Mulford Act, which prohibits Californians from carrying firearms. Hmm, funny how American history is full of hypocrisy just like your statements....

YuriBoy
YuriBoy

Steinmetz told officers that he went to the airport only to buy a cup of coffee and had no other business there, police said.


Just to buy a cup of coffee.  Sounds pretty expensive for a cup of coffee.  There was a definite motive behind it.  This guy is a potential terrorist.  He needs a psych eval.

Marshall Wilmot
Marshall Wilmot

I'm a liberal and I own a handgun and a rifle. Big whoop. I don't believe that anyone needs to carry around an AK-whatever in public. What is he feeling inadequate about, anyway?

sfefeedback
sfefeedback

He is a right wing radical... something is seriously wrong with all of their brains! They are all a bunch of cowardly, delusional fools!

Yoshi Budiyanto
Yoshi Budiyanto

Clearly gun discussion is a subject that use more emotion. Both camps are not going to budge. @Grace Hall, this crowd seemed to disagree with you. Cut your losses and safe your breath. Post on pro NRA board and go heal your emotional bruise.

rickaz59
rickaz59

When does a place like Barrows name a lab after an employee?  They name them after donors.  Steinmetz or someone in his family may be loaded with dough and care less about discrediting Barrows.  In fact, that might have been the whole purpose.  Has anyone asked Barrows if they allow researchers to bring firearms to the workplace?  Has anyone there tried to do it?

Joseph William Betancourt
Joseph William Betancourt

Grave... you absolute have the rights to your beliefs as we do... 7 responses is a bit much- don't you think? I meant the post was asking if we agree with his employers actions, not our opinion on gun rights. Maybe you should take some of tgat energy and serve the homeless a bit?

Original-American
Original-American

Apparently, these guntards want to turn this nation into Somalia. Walking around with assault rifles on our backs. That's a 3rd world cesspool mentality. Sorry asswipes. We're not Somalia. We're the United States. We are nation of laws and order. Not lawlessness and disorder.

Joe Rollins
Joe Rollins

Not engaging an enemy is not the same as surrendering. You'd be wise to pick your battles better.

Grace Hall
Grace Hall

Apparent you don't read much history though Mike. Don't base your 'common sense' on one lifetime of observation. And by the way he didn't have 'automatic weapon' either. It was an AR-15. I know that's not as dramatic but that's the same sensationalism the media uses. But even if it was automatic, he was not threatening anyone.

Grace Hall
Grace Hall

Not topple a government Joe. But not simply surrender as it seems you already have. That's sad.

Joe Rollins
Joe Rollins

Only a fool believes that any kind of gun can topple a government with a quarter million soldiers, thousands of tanks, thousands of aircraft, and the world's largest nuclear arsenal. But by all means, please take the first shot to demonstrate just how effective your weapon is.

Mike Bowers
Mike Bowers

I experience life and don't watch too much television. I've traveled all over and had many life experiences. So my opinions are from real life experiences and just good common sense. Making up "stories" about things that have never happened or probable outcomes based on NO facts is just ignorant. I don't need guns ever since I left the military.

Chris Markel
Chris Markel

This doctor sounds like a megalomaniac and a narcissist. He probably wanted to be arrested so as to bring attention to himself in the media spotlight.

John Phoenix
John Phoenix

Definitely. Extremely stupid bringing an AR-15 to the airport. Or anywhere for that matter.

Grace Hall
Grace Hall

I'm sorry about your grandfather Mike, but implying my mentality equals that of a murderer because I believe in an understand the reason for our 2nd amendment is ridiculous. And you're right. They are designed to kill. Which is the very reason we cannot allow our overseers to be the only ones allowed to carry them! Well regulated refers to the militia clause Aaron and in 18th century speak meant well trained. But the general right is conferred to 'the people'.

Grace Hall
Grace Hall

True you must be responsible when carrying. But inadvertently sweeping your muzzle in the wrong direction happens. That was careless on his part. But it's being equated with intentionally aiming it at someone. And Mike... Who enforces those 'strict' gun laws? People with guns! I will not be so foolish as to hand those rights over to someone else ant trust them to not abuse them. As long as the government has guns and are allowed to carry them in public, the people should have precisely the same freedom. Some animals are not more equal than others. The problem is that people have been conditioned to think just like you by the media and government schools. I admire anyone who exercises their rights even if just to remind people we still have those rights... for now.

Matthew Broyles
Matthew Broyles

Appropriate reaction. If you're going to carry around an AR-15, watch where you point your muzzle. It's your right to carry; not to be employed if you get busted for being irresponsible with your weapon. Want to carry around a rifle? Fine, join the military and serve our country. Otherwise, if you're not hunting for subsistence, you're just waving around your toy for attention like a child.

Mike Bowers
Mike Bowers

Grace, get a clue. My grandfather, Dorwan Stoddard, was shot by some asshole that had your mentality. Guns are designed for one purpose, to kill. Your bible's commandments say otherwise.

Mike Bowers
Mike Bowers

Are you serious?! People don't take lightly to someone carrying around an automatic weapon in a crowded place. There is absolutely no sense for a civilian to ever carry an semi automatic weapon in public unless he just purchased the thing. I am also a veteran that believes there should be strict laws governing firearms.

Original-American
Original-American

If law enforcement were to conduct a search warrant of his home. No shred of doubt, that they would find white supremacist literature and related items. As well as anti-government postings on Stormfront. I think his employer should consider terminating this guy. Anyone who walks around in public like this, has some sort of connections to criminal law breaking extremism. 

Original-American
Original-American

He needs to be put on a leash. Gun fucker nearly killed two innocent Americans with his untrained recklessness. 


Glad to hear the court of law is requiring him to surrender his weapons. He may be some sort of a "brain scientist". But his actions tells the American public that he's insane in the membrane. 

scottsdalebubbe
scottsdalebubbe

This is the type of guy who might be a workplace shooter and would bring that weapon to Barrow or the U of A Med School campus and start shooting.  Workplace shooters often give clues of some kind -- this is a big one.


Barrow's position is better safe than sorry.  The "good" Steinmetz' research "could have done" (speculative to be sure) does not outweigh the safety of employees, patients, and visitors at Barrow.  Hopefully, if it has fired Steinmetz, it has also barred him from it and the St Joseph campus and taken extra cautionary preventive steps with its security systems and personnel.


Regardless of the legality of gun carry at PHX, regardless of the timing, Steinmetz demonstrated in a big way that he, like the rest of the pathetic open carry dimwits, has sand for brains and piss-poor judgement.  While open carry may be legal, there isn't a dam thing that a person can do if an employer observes that a person may be unsafe to be around and terminates his/her employment.


BTW -- Terminating employment is a lot like a battered spouse leaving the perp batterer.  At that point, the perp is at his/her most dangerous.



AkaTed
AkaTed

Justin Beiber is busy training with Mayweather for his next fight with Orlando Bloom 

scottsdalebubbe
scottsdalebubbe

Probably like the Army psychiatrist who had mental issues and shot numerous personnel at an Army base in Texas.  "Physician, heal thyself!"

AkaTed
AkaTed

@YuriBoy He went there for a cup of coffee and to wave his big stick around.All it's about is showing a force of power and arrogance.I guess being treated like a GOD at St Joes was not enough for him. St Joes now has pick up the pieces from this embarrassment 

donner_froh
donner_froh

@rickaz59 The laboratory--as in the building, equipment and fixtures--aren't named after a researcher. The post-docs, grad students and other professionals, plus the work they are doing, will be called the __________ lab. Shows up that way on resumes, for example. 

AkaTed
AkaTed

@rickaz59 Before he was dumb@zz he was treated like a god at St Joes hospital 

AkaTed
AkaTed

  1. All guns are always loaded.
  2. Never let the muzzle cover anything you are not willing to destroy.
  3. Keep your finger off the trigger until your sights are on the target.
  4. Be sure of your target and what is beyond it.
  1. ALWAYS keep the gun pointed in a safe direction.
  2. ALWAYS keep your finger off the trigger until ready to shoot.
  3. ALWAYS keep the gun unloaded until ready to use.—The National Rifle Association, The fundamental NRA rules for safe gun handling
  4. He would not be in the position if he would of followed these rules 

AkaTed
AkaTed

Regardless if it was Full Auto or Semi after the tragedy in LA he should known better 


On the morning of Friday, November 1, 2013, Ciancia allegedly entered Terminal 3 of Los Angeles International Airport after being dropped off there by a roommate.[4] He was carrying a bag filled with a semiautomatic,[5].223-caliber Smith & Wesson M&P-15 rifle, five 30-round magazines, and hundreds of additional rounds of ammunition contained in boxes

AkaTed
AkaTed

Yes he was pointing a rifle at 2 women with blatant disregard for public safety 

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