According to the official complaint he told FBI investigators he was a demolitions expert with the Army's Special Forces and just returned from his third deployment from Afghanistan.
Atwater said it was his practice to carry at least two blocks of C-4 explosives on any operation in a bag.He apparently grabbed that bag to use as a carry-on for his trip to Midland and put children's items in it.
He says he didn't see any explosives in the main compartment of the bag and was surprised to hear any C-4 was found.
Atwater also had a run in with airport security while leaving Fayetteville, North Carolina on Christmas eve for his trip to Midland when a military smoke grenade was found in his bag.
That grenade was confiscated and he was admonished before being allowed to continue on his trip.
If Atwater is convicted, he faces up to 10 years in prison. Atwater may also face military charges as well.