7 Years in Prison Over $2: Turnstile Jumper Found with Illegal Handgun

A man was sentenced to seven years behind bars when police found him in possession of an illegal firearm after he jumped the turnstile at a PATH train station in New York.

Last March, police found 37-year-old Ruben Sanabria to be in possession of a loaded .40 caliber Smith & Wesson pistol after they spotted Sanabria jump over the turnstile because he did not have the $2.25 fare, according to the Associated Press.

When police approached Sanabria to question him for jumping over the turnstile, officers searched Sanabria and found the loaded hand gun tucked in his pants waistband.

Sanabria decided to plead guilty to possessing a weapon in the second degree and was recently sentenced to seven years in prison, with another three years of probation levied after his release.

Sanabria had faced a possible prison term of up to 15 years, but decided to plead to the lesser charge and forgo the possibility of spending the extra years in jail, as reported by The New York Post.

New York has some of the strictest guns laws in the country and Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. maintains that while the $2.25 infraction led to seven years in prison, city officials will continue to enforce a zero tolerance stance when it comes to illegal guns.

"This defendant illegally carried a loaded semiautomatic firearm into a public transportation system used by thousands of people every day," Vance said during a press conference.

"Preventing gun violence is one of my top priorities as district attorney, and I will make sure that this office continues to seek strong sentences for crimes involving firearms," he added.

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority, which oversees the subway system in New York City, had previously stated that fare jumping is a big problem that costs the agency tens of millions of dollars a year.

Former MTA chairman, Joe Lhota, had worked with NYPD commissioner Ray Kelly to step of patrols of the system to try and reduce the estimated $100 million lost due to fare beating.