N.J. Gov. Chris Christie Thursday pardoned a Philadelphia woman who faced jail time after she brought a registered handgun across the New Jersey border in 2013.

Shaneen Allen, a mother of two, was arrested in October of that year in Hamilton Township after she was pulled over during a routine traffic stop. Although she told police she had the gun and a Pennsylvania concealed carry permit, she faced up to three years in prison in New Jersey, where gun laws are among the strictest in the nation.

Allen, whose .380 Bersa Thunder handgun was loaded with hollow point bullets when she was arrested, had no criminal record. She was charged with unlawful possession of a weapon and possession of hollow-point bullets.

In September, Allen was allowed to enter a pre-trial intervention program.

Christie, a potential 2016 presidential candidate, initially said he would let the case play out in the state's judicial system. He said recently he would consider changing the state's gun laws, but that the Democratic legislature has no appetite for that and instead he would do what was in his purview, such as pardons.

Christie's action drew swift praise from the National Rifle Association.

The case drew national attention, in part because the same Atlantic County prosecutor and judge who signed off on pre-trial intervention for former NFL star Ray Rice, who knocked his then-fiancee out in an Atlantic City hotel elevator last year, denied the opportunity to Allen.

Fox News' Joshua Rhett Miller and The Associated Press contributed to this report.