A 20-year-old Freeport man is under arrest Tuesday after officers recovered a stolen handgun from a backpack he had been carrying, police said.

Nassau County police said a Freeport police officer on routine patrol spotted Keith Kendrick, of 32 W. Dean St., just before midnight Monday carrying the backpack near the intersection of Pine Street and South Long Beach Avenue, but when Kendrick saw the officer he abandoned the backpack on a church lawn.

Officers stopped Kendrick and a subsequent search of the backpack revealed a loaded .9-mm handgun inside, police said.

Police said the gun had been reported stolen to Freeport police on Sept. 24. It was not clear where the theft had occurred.

Kendrick was charged with second-degree and fourth-degree criminal possession of a weapon, as well as with fourth-degree criminal possession of stolen property. He faces arraignment Tuesday in First District Court in Hempstead.

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