NewsChristmas Eve chaos: TSA intercept loaded gun at Washington D.C. airport with penalties potentially reaching $60,000

Christmas Eve chaos: TSA intercept loaded gun at Washington D.C. airport with penalties potentially reaching $60,000

The traveler went through security with a loaded gun in her carry-on luggage.
The traveler went through security with a loaded gun in her carry-on luggage.
Images source: © TSA

10:29 AM EST, December 27, 2023

This unexpected intervention occurred at Ronald Reagan International Airport in Washington D.C., USA, on Christmas Eve.

The passenger had a firearm in her carry-on luggage

An x-ray machine detected the presence of the firearm in the passenger's luggage during a security check. TSA officers were called by airport staff to inspect the carry-on bag, leading to the discovery and confiscation of the weapon. Subsequently, the woman was charged with firearm possession.

"Bringing a gun to an airport security checkpoint was no way to enter the holiday. There's naughty and there's nice at this time of year and the nice way to transport your firearm is to make sure it is unloaded, locked in a hard-sided case and declared at your airline check-in counter. The naughty way is to bring it to a checkpoint," stated John Busch, Federal Director of Airport Safety at TSA.

Penalties for improper weapon transportation can reach $60,000

According to the officers, the correct protocol for transporting a gun includes ensuring it is unloaded, locked inside a hard case, and its transportation declared at the airline's check-in counter.

Busch warned that for improper transportation of a weapon and failure to report it, the woman could face a significant civil penalty. Possibility of fines for carrying a weapon can go up to $15,000.

In October, TSA released data from the third quarter of 2023, revealing a sharp increase in passengers bringing loaded guns to American airport checkpoints. Experts predict that the record number of 6,500 from 2022 might be surpassed.

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