CHICAGO (AP/WGN) — Prosecutors have dropped all felony charges against an Iowa man who was arrested in 2021 by Chicago police for having guns and ammunition in his hotel room overlooking the Chicago lakefront.

Cook County prosecutors dropped the felony charges against Keegan Casteel on Monday after he pleaded guilty to reckless conduct, a misdemeanor, and was ordered to pay a $500 fine.

Police reports obtained by WGN Investigates show officers found a semi-automatic PTR-91 without a serial number, four additional rifle magazines with unknown amounts of ammunition near a window and a loaded handgun.

What they don’t show is any evidence of a potentially sinister plot as envisioned by the police superintendent and mayor.

Casteel was arrested on July 4, 2021, when a housekeeper found the guns and ammunition in his room at the W Hotel. The weapons — a rifle with a laser sight, a handgun and ammunition — were found on the sill of a 12th-floor window that had a view of Ohio Street Beach and Navy Pier, a major tourist attraction along Lake Michigan.

Police video showed he told officers he “didn’t mean to startle anyone” and simply forgot to remove the firearms from a bag while packing for a trip to the city.

Then-Mayor Lori Lightfoot and the city’s then-police superintendent both suggested after his arrest that Casteel, visiting with his family from Iowa, may have intended to fire on Navy Pier crowds.

Casteel said he had packed the guns and ammunition by mistake when he packed quickly the night before making the trip with his girlfriend and his two children and decided to keep the items in his room. He said he had traveled to Chicago to propose to his girlfriend on the Ferris wheel at Navy Pier.

Among the items police seized during a search of the hotel room was a diamond ring. And Casteel, then 32, proposed to his girlfriend immediately after being released from the Cook County Jail.

PREVIOUS COVERAGE: Hotel guest found with rifle in room overlooking Chicago lakefront

In a statement, Casteel’s attorney, Jonathan M. Brayman, said that his client’s purpose for bringing the guns was violent crime in the city. He called out then-Chicago leaders for making Casteel a “scapegoat in the face of widespread violence and actual shootings in the City of Chicago,” calling him nothing more “than a law-abiding person exercising his Second Amendment Rights.”

Following the dropping of felony charges, Brayman issued an update to WGN Investigates News: “Keegan and his family love Chicago — just not the way he was treated by the public officials here. He is happy to put this needlessly public chapter of his life behind him.”