NYU student arrested for building air rifles in dorm

Amy Zhang and Nicole Brown

Rachel Kaplan/WSN


CAS junior Bernard Goal was arrested by the New York Police Department on Monday night for the possession of illegal weapons.

Maintenance crew members found air rifles on his bed in room 1705 of Lafayette Street residence hall on Monday and contacted NYU Public Safety.

Public Safety officers searched Goal’s room and contacted the NYPD after finding five weapons in the dorm. NYPD said Goal was arrested at 7:40 p.m. that night on five misdemeanor counts for violating a city administrative code that prohibits the unlawful possession or selling of air rifles.

In an email to all the residents of Lafayette, Jules Martin, vice president of global security and crisis management, ensured students that the rifles found in Goal’s room posed no threat.

“As it turned out, these items, though they look highly realistic, were not assault rifles,” Martin said. “They were ‘airsoft’ guns, which shoot small, plastic, BB-like pellets.”

NYU spokesman Philip Lentz said Goal is subject to the Student Conduct Policy and Process Handbook, which specifically prohibits the commercial sale of products, services or tickets in the residence hall.

“Everyone should understand that, under the University Policy on Student Conduct and the University Policy on Weapons, neither real firearms nor replica guns are permitted at the university,” Martin explained in the email to Lafayette residents.

But many students in Lafayette said they didn’t know much about Goal or that he was arrested Monday night before they received Martin’s email.

Even Goal’s suitemate Maxwell Perkins, a second-year Tisch dance major, said he had no knowledge of any strange behavior. He said he was as surprised as other members in the building.

“When I came home, all the doors were open, and there were police officers both from NYU and NYPD in my room,” Perkins said.

Steinhardt junior Ryan McTernan, who also lives on the 17th floor of Lafayette, said he never noticed anything suspicious or strange about Goal, either.

“I hung out with him a few times,” McTernan said. “He’s just another guy on the floor.”

A version of this article appeared in the Wednesday, April 24 print edition. Additional reporting by Emily Bell. Nicole Brown is investigative editor. Amy Zhang is managing editor. Email them at [email protected].