12/29/2011 01:12 pm ET

Meredith Graves, Tourist From Tennessee, Arrested For Bringing Pistol To 9/11 Memorial

Attention tourists coming to New York: don't bring your guns.

WABC reports 39-year-old Meredith Graves, a fourth-year medical student in town from Tennessee last week for a job interview, tried to check her gun during a visit to the 9/11 memorial. She'd noticed a sign that said "No guns allowed," and asked a guard where she could check the loaded .32 caliber pistol she'd been carrying in her purse.

The guard led Graves to a police officer who promptly arrested her. Although Graves has a license for the weapon in Tennessee, New York's gun laws are much stricter.

The New York Post reports Graves was locked up on a weapons-possession charge and held on $2,000 bond that she posted Wednesday. She's due back in court on March 19th.

Graves faces a minimum 3 1/2 years in prison for the mix up.

"You'd think states would reciprocate with the Second Amendment. She has a license to carry in Tennessee," Graves' mother-in-law, who wished not to be named, told The Post. "Everyone down there carries, and she just forgot. She was being honest, and this is the treatment they give innocent people."

There is, however, a promising precedent for Graves' plight.

In February, a jury acquitted Floridian Jonathan Ryan of weapons possession charges. Ryan had driven up to New York to help his girlfriend move. After being pulled over turning right at a red light (another thing that's illegal here in the Big Apple) cops searched his car and found a loaded weapon.

Ryan had a license for the weapon in Florida and also faced 3 1/2 years in prison before the jury acquitted him.

Mayor Bloomberg has made out-of-state guns one of his major issues. It was an out-of-state gun that recently killed police officer Peter Figoski.