A man in an NYPD sweatshirt with a holstered weapon that looked like a handgun was found skulking around the “Good Morning America” studios in Times Square early Tuesday, police sources said.
Abm Faisal, 31, was first spotted in his car by an off-duty NYPD detective who was working security outside Times Square Studios on Broadway near West 44th Street around 5:15 a.m. the sources said. The car had a thin blue line American flag that symbolizes support for the police, US Army decals and a decorative front NYPD license plate.
The two briefly chatted before Faisal got out and walked off.
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About an hour later, the detective, who worked security for a company contracted out by GMA, spotted the suspect getting up from a table at a pedestrian area.
The off-duty cop told The Post Faisal’s jacket was pushed back behind a holster on a waistband holding what appeared to be a handgun.
The guard said he took notice of Faisal’s NYPD shirt — but immediately thought that he couldn’t be a cop.
The guard notified other NYPD officers who were working paid detail security at ABC — and then stood at a distance to make sure nothing happened to the cops, he said.
Two officers approached the suspect, told him to put his hands up and took the weapon out of the holster without incident, cops said.
It turned out to be a BB gun, the sources said.
Faisal, of Bensonhurst, was brought to the Midtown South Precinct stationhouse and charged with criminal possession of a weapon, cops said.
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It was not immediately clear whether Faisal would be ticketed for the NYPD vanity plate, according to police sources. In New York State, where valid plates are required in the front and back of a vehicle.
Police were waiting to conduct a search warrant on the car Tuesday afternoon.
Faisal has a history as an emotionally disturbed person, according to sources.
He has prior arrests in the Big Apple for grand larceny, the sources said, and was once busted in Bristol, UK.
That arrest came in May 2012 when he was 22 — for allegedly driving a stolen vehicle, according to a report in The Bristol Press at the time.
“He was driving a 2011 Toyota 4Runner sports-utility vehicle without a registration,” Lt. Donn Watson of the Bristol Police Department said of that incident. “When the police officer asked him why it was not registered, Faisal said he was test driving the car, and it was 4 a.m.”
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The SUV was determined to have been stolen from a local car lot, the outlet reported.
Tuesday’s incident came weeks after gunman Farrakhan Muhammad, 31, allegedly opened fire at West 44th Street and Seventh Avenue in Times Square — striking a 4-year-old girl and two women as he aimed for his brother.
The guard lamented the recent crime in Times Square — and an increase in mentally ill and homeless people in the area — but said he is confident that the city will eventually return to pre-pandemic normalcy.
Click here to read more on the New York Post.