Friday, July 20, 2012

TSA Week in Review: Firearm Found Concealed in Lining of Carry-on Bag at Phoenix


A loaded .32 caliber pistol with 7 rounds was found concealed in the lining of a carry-on bag at Phoenix (PHX). Items in the Strangest Places – It’s one thing to forget you had a prohibited item in your bag, but when you intentionally try to sneak it past us, you could wind up being cited or even arrested by law enforcement. Here are a few examples from this week where passengers tried to sneak items past our Officers.
A dagger concealed in a hairbrush was discovered at Rapid City (RAP).
  • A loaded .32 caliber pistol with 7 rounds was found concealed in the lining of a carry-on bag at Phoenix (PHX).
  • A cheese knife was discovered inside a teddy bear at Minneapolis St. Paul (MSP).  
  • A razorblade was discovered concealed in a shoe at Seattle (SEA).
  • A dagger concealed in a hairbrush was discovered at Rapid City (RAP).
  • And yet another brush dagger… A dagger concealed in a hairbrush was discovered at Omaha (OMA).
  • A comb dagger was discovered at Baltimore (BWI).
  • A pocketknife was discovered wrapped in aluminum foil and taped to the bottom of a bag at Houston (HOU).
A pocketknife was discovered wrapped in aluminum foil and taped to the bottom of a bag -- A cheese Knife
M147 Firing Device - While resolving a checked baggage alarm on a bag at Reno (RNO), Officers found an initiator, an M147 firing device with the words, “Danger Blasting Cap Explosive” stenciled on the side
M147 Firing Device - While resolving a checked baggage alarm on a bag at Reno (RNO), Officers found an initiator, an M147 firing device with the words, “Danger Blasting Cap Explosive” stenciled on the side, and two propane canisters. As I’ve said before, we’re all too familiar with instructors and other people in this type of business needing these sorts of items for their jobs. As with all inert training items and replicas, we don’t know they’re not real until we’ve gone through all the motions. This can include evacuated baggage areas and closed checkpoints which lead to delays and missed flights. People that need to travel with INERT items should plan ahead and contact their preferred shipper about mailing the training aids to their destination. Read here and here on why inert items cause problems at checkpoints.

Body Scanner Discoveries This Week – There were a total of 8 illegal and prohibited items discovered this week with the body scanners at: Fresno (FAT), 2 at San Francisco (SFO), Chicago O’Hare (ORD), Tampa (TPA), Seattle (SEA), Orange County (SNA), and Ontario (ONT). Items were found in hands, pockets, and concealed in the groin area. Among the items was a tube of toothpaste a passenger at SNA had concealed behind their belt and tucked in front of his waistband.

Stun Guns –7 stun guns were discovered in carry-on bags at checkpoints around the nation at: Columbia (CAE), Ft. Lauderdale (FLL), San Juan (SJU), Baltimore (BWI), Los Angeles (LAX), Denver (DEN), and Gainesville (GNV).

People Say the Darndest Things – Here is an example of what not to say at the airport. Statements like these not only delay the people who said them but can also inconvenience lots of other passengers if the checkpoint or terminal has to be evacuated:
  • A gate agent at Rochester (ROC) asked a passenger if he had any firearms to declare and he replied: “ no just a couple of bombs and a little dynamite, but it’s no big deal.”
Miscellaneous Prohibited Items - In addition to all of the other prohibited items we find weekly, our Officers also found firearm components, realistic replica firearms, stun guns, brass knuckles, ammunition, batons, and a lot of sharp pointy things.

Loaded Guns
Loaded Guns
Loaded Guns
Loaded Guns
Loaded Guns
32 guns discovered at TSA checkpoints.





Firearms - Here are the firearms our Officers found in carry-on baggage since I posted last Friday.

You can travel with your firearms in checked baggage, but they must first be declared to the airline. You can go here for more details on how to properly travel with your firearms. Firearm possession laws vary by state and locality. Travelers should familiarize themselves with state and local firearm laws for each point of travel prior to departure

Unfortunately these sorts of occurrences are all too frequent which is why we talk about these finds. Sure, it’s great to share the things that our officers are finding, but at the same time, each time we find a dangerous item, the throughput is slowed down and a passenger that likely had no ill intent ends up with a citation or in some cases is even arrested. This is a friendly reminder to please leave these items at home. Just because we find a prohibited item on an individual does not mean they had bad intentions, that's for the law enforcement officer to decide. In many cases, people simply forgot they had these items.

Knives































If you have a travel related issue or question that needs an immediate answer, you can contact us by clicking here.

42 comments:

Laura Monteros said...

Love the six-shooter! Right out of a Western. But I have to wonder--with all the heightened security in the past 11 years, people are still trying to sneak in weapons. It would stand to reason that prior to 9/11, at least as many if not more had contraband when they boarded a plane, yet hijackings were relatively rare. Does all this security really make use more secure, or is it an illusion?

Anonymous said...

http://www.nbcdfw.com/news/local/TSA-Agents-Allegedly-Strip-Search-Woman-Fiddle-With-Feeding-Tube-162985046.html

Anonymous said...

Your billion-dollar boondoggle scanners found toothpaste? Toothpaste?!?!!? How proud you must be! I wonder, how many tubes of toothpaste are needed to make an airliner you know, go boom!

Oh, and why is it that every time the agency is under heat, your cute little posts, on your cute little blog, come out at dizzying speed to push them further down the page?

screen shot...

Anonymous said...

I suggest that you add a section to your weekly blog that list the "darndest" things TSA employees do - like humilating a woman with a feeding tube.

Anonymous said...

Once again, all the body scanners in all the airports in the United States that screened millions of passengers found a minuscule number of "illegal and prohibited items." This week the number was eight, down from last week. Only one of those items merited specific mention, and it was a tube of toothpaste! The other seven presumably were drugs. None of the items threatened aviation. Once again, the TSA themselves tell us that the scanners are a colossal waste of money, and certainly are not worth even the small risk of radiation exposure. I don't know about you, but I do not consider finding a weekly handful of people smuggling toothpaste and drugs a valid reason for exposure to ionizing radiation.

As always, the rest of this week's collection were metallic items that could have been found with measures in place before the TSA existed. This is just another weekly report in which the TSA themselves clearly tell us that all the "enhancements" they've made to airport security are not worth the very high cost, in time, liberty, privacy, and dignity as well as in billions of dollars.

Still, it does show us that the TSA are doing something. Which I suppose is better than doing nothing. So keep up the good work!

Anonymous said...

Good job guys, thank you!

Anonymous said...

Oh no...not toothpaste. Catching toothpaste makes it so worth spending hundreds of millions of dollars on the body scanners. How large of a tube was it? If only the person transferred the toothpaste to 3.4 oz containers and placed them in a quart bag, they could have taken them on the plane. We all know that two 3.4 oz of toothpaste in a quart bag is not dangerous, but 6.8 oz of toothpaste in one tube is dangerous, even though the 6.8 oz tube could fit inside a quart bag. Why is that?

Anonymous said...

Good job strip searching that lady in Nashville while failing to prevent the pilot in Utah from stealing the airplane, TSA! I appreciate the good work you're doing every day! Whatever you do, just keep paying the totally ineffective and inept workforce!

SSSS for Some Reason said...

OMG! The count this week is up to 32! That is two up from the average! The terrorists must be planning something because the number of guns found compared to the number of people screened is now only .000001%

Thank Dog we have the TSA protecting us from this horrible trend!

Anonymous said...

So exactly how many of the people caught with weapons are actually arrested and charged with a crime? I notice you never talk about that part. I wonder why? Is it because none of them are actually a threat so they aren't charged and tried?

Which is it Bob? Either they are a threat and get charged, arrested, and tried, or they aren't a threat and walk away after your TSA adds to his personal collection.

RB said...

Body Scanner Discoveries This Week – There were a total of 8 illegal and prohibited items discovered this week with the body scanners at: Fresno (FAT), 2 at San Francisco (SFO), Chicago O’Hare (ORD), Tampa (TPA), Seattle (SEA), Orange County (SNA), and Ontario (ONT). Items were found in hands, pockets, and concealed in the groin area. Among the items was a tube of toothpaste a passenger at SNA had concealed behind their belt and tucked in front of his waistband.
.................

How about a complete listing of these eight (8) items found by Strip Search Machine.

What do these devices cost? Was it $200,000 each plus installation and maintenance cost. And how many are installed?

Is it somewhere around 600 Strip Search Machines?

And out of 10.5 million people who traveled by commercial air during this reporting period TSA found eight (8) whole items by Electronic Strip Search.

I'm betting that not one of those eight (8) items found presented any kind of threat to aviation.

Post the list of eight (8) items TSA and prove me wrong.

Anonymous said...

All that money, time, and intimacy invaded to find 8 prohibited items with body scans, the most important of which was a tube of toothpaste? This is ridiculous.

Anonymous said...

I cant imagine how many people and what kind of items where being brought on board before we started checking.Makes you wonder!
The toothpaste was concealed.Why ? Unless you have something to hide or its filled with illegal substances theres no need to hide it Right?
I always check my hunting weapons when i travel and lock them in front of the ticket agent for over 30 yesrs never had a problem.Always follow and check the airlines regulations and rules.If you forgot you have a loaded weapon on your person than you should not be carrying.

Anonymous said...

http://www.onlinecriminaljusticedegree.com/tsa-waste/

Address this. Then we can have an honest discussion.

Anonymous said...

I think all of these negative anonymous posts are written by the same person. I think the TSA is doing a great job. When I put my wife and children on a flight to see my in-laws I am happy everyone on the plane has undergone this intense scrutiny.

RB said...

Anonymous said...
I think all of these negative anonymous posts are written by the same person. I think the TSA is doing a great job. When I put my wife and children on a flight to see my in-laws I am happy everyone on the plane has undergone this intense scrutiny.

July 22, 2012 8:17 PM
...................
Everyone on the plane has not gone through intense scrutiny.

The flight crew has not been fully screened.

The people who maintain and clean the aircraft have not been screened.

The people loading baggage on the aircraft have not been screened.

Some of the passengers may not have been fully screened if certain TSA programs are in work at that airport.

Lastly, the people who screened your wife and children have not been screened and evidence is clear (and abundant) that we have more to fear from TSA employees engage in illegal activities than we do from these terrorist that TSA can't seem to find.

Still feel good about putting your family on an airplane supposedly secured by TSA?

Anonymous said...

Good job TSA Officers..

Good job. Thank you for your service.

RB said...

Still waiting for an account of the other Seven (7) items found by the Strip Search Machines Bob.

JoJo said...

Anonymous said...
I think all of these negative anonymous posts are written by the same person. I think the TSA is doing a great job. When I put my wife and children on a flight to see my in-laws I am happy everyone on the plane has undergone this intense scrutiny.

----

That's okay, there are many of us convinced that there is just one person (or at least a very small group of people) who keep making all the TSA apologist comments.

Wintermute said...

Anonymouse said...

"The toothpaste was concealed.Why ? Unless you have something to hide or its filled with illegal substances theres no need to hide it Right?"

The toothpaste was likely conceled because it exceeded the rule on how much toothpaste you can take on board. With a 70% failure rate on the part of the TSA, the passenger likely thought it was worth getting caught if it saved them having to re-buy toothpaste on the other end.

Or, it could have been a trial run by a terrorist. Today a tube of toothpaste. Tomorrow, a tube of... Wait... What exactly would be stable enough to carry this way, but appear to be toothpaste and also still be capable of taking down the aircraft in this small a quantity?

Anonymous said...

@RB.....I have been on and off this blog since its start and I have been off for quite some time in this last gap. I cant believe you are still here ranting and raving. You must be one unhappy person with nothing better to do than come on here and bash TSA. It HAS to be tiring. Im not saying TSA is perfect but I believe they do a great job of keeping the traveling public safe. I think most people are mad at the simple fact that its an inconvenience. PERIOD! Nobody wants to be inconvenienced but its necessary. And every time you ask (or anyone asks) 'Why does TSA brag about the things they find when none of it actually brings down a plane?' ...well, how do they know someones intent? Maybe the terrorists were doing a practice run with the toothpaste and if TSA lets it go, the terrorists then try with a tube of explosive instead. Ever think of that? Im sure they are constantly testing the system. TSA's job is to have things in place that 'deter' terrorists and hopefully put dents in their plans bc they couldnt get their 'test' items through. Thats the point. They dont ever really want to catch one, they want to stop them before they even hit the checkpoint by having practices in place that keep them away, how ever inconvenient to us. Its sucks but oh well. Its reality. Get over it...or take the bus!

Anonymous said...

Why do people scoff at the fact toothpaste was found? What I'd like to know is why the person felt like they had to "smuggle" the stuff. Just put it in your checked bag! It's not as if the 3oz rule is new-it's been around for years. And it's not as if toothpaste is difficult to find or expensive. If people didn't try to sneak firearms and yes, toothpaste, past security, they may not have spent all that money on machines people are complaining about.

Anonymous said...

Everyone always seems to complain on here about the lack of items found and how the scanners are a waste of millions of dollars. Assuming they find everything (I know, a big if) we can only also assume that all and sundry would be bringing their loaded weapons onto planes if there were no scanners. Could it be that they are a deterrent...no, surely not, that doesn't fit your anti-TSA ideas now does it ?

jimbo said...

What most of these so called contributors fail to realise is that the reason there are so few people caught attempting to smuggle weapons etc into the USA is because of the body and bag scanners.

Therefore good work officers these scanners are a deterrent and as a soon to be passenger to the USA I will be pleased that these scanners are there so that my security is protected. If you can not provide constructive comment half of you contributors don't bother leaving negative ones

The Tri State Flyer said...

Thank you TSA Officers for making my travels safe and on time.

The sting of 9/11 will always be out there and with us, we miss you very much Joshua, Love always.

Anonymous said...

Hey Bob,is it true like TSORon says that TSA doesn't work for the American people but instead works for the Government?

Anonymous said...

It only took one crazy guy with a gun to do a whole lot of damage in Colorado this week. Seems to me that keeping guns off of airplanes is a good thing.

Anonymous said...

LOL @ the hard push TSA is doing to get their employees to post pro-TSA comments in a lame attempt to drown out criticism.

Are these admins & agents posting fake comments on work time? Falsehoods on the taxpayers' dime?

Tell them (him? her?) to get a better line than the trollish bullying, "Don't like it [being violated]? Don't fly!"

Anonymous said...

Keeping guns off a plane is a good thing, but the metal detector and x-ray baggage scanner can find them jist fine. We don't need to spend millions of dollars on scanners that seem to only find toothpaste and drugs with a 50+% false positive rate. If you really want to be safe, make all passengers submit to full body patdowns.

The toothpaste could have been a "dry run" for terrorism, but it was most likely just a guy who didn't want his toothpaste confiscated as part of the war on liquids.

I don't believe the next airplane terrorist attack will come through the checkpoint. There are too many other vulnerabilities at the airport. Of course somebody could always bribe a TSA worker with $200 to get anything through as evidenced in this story:

http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2012/07/tsa-drug-scheme-lax.html

It was drugs this time, but what if it wasn't drugs?

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
It only took one crazy guy with a gun to do a whole lot of damage in Colorado this week. Seems to me that keeping guns off of airplanes is a good thing.


Perhaps. (The counter argument goes that one citizen with a gun could have stopped 'Sideshow Bob' before he got as far as he did. But that's a topic for another forum.)

In any case, too bad the TSA does such a sucky job of detecting guns- they miss them 70% of the time, according to the latest figures they've bothered to release.

Wintermute said...

The Tri State Flyer said...

"Thank you TSA Officers for making my travels safe and on time."

Except they don't make your travels safe (your fellow travellers, along with hardened cockpit doors, do) and they impede travel, making it much slower than it otherwise needs to be.

"The sting of 9/11 will always be out there and with us, we miss you very much Joshua, Love always."

Invoking the name of one presumable lost in that tragedy does not garner you any sympathy. If anything, it angers me more. They paid the ultimate price for our way of life, and your response is to throw that way of life away?

Wintermute said...

jimbo said...

"What most of these so called contributors fail to realise is that the reason there are so few people caught attempting to smuggle weapons etc into the USA is because of the body and bag scanners."

If you're going to make a bold statement such as this, I'm going to insist you cite your source. I have yet to hear of a gun being found via body scanner. They are detectable the pre-9/11 way (metal detectors for people, x-ray for bags), so your argument holds as much logic as an anti-monkey rock. (actually, the rock makes more sense. It can, at least, be thrown at an attacking monkey)

jimbo said...

It is a shame that Wintermute has lost his sense of reasoning or maybe he never had any in the first instance. I can cite numerous reports to back up my statements but like the "monkey" he is so fond of quoting maybe he is unable to understand pure logistics.

Please if you are going to contradict myself please do it in a way that is commensurate with logic. Any person with any sense, Wintermute included, can see that , because of the introduction of scanners the incidence of firearms being smuggled has been reduced. As regards other methods of tracing illegal substances being smuggled has he not heard of non metallic firearms of which there are many and varied. I applaud all systems that go anyway to reducing the illegal transportation of any object that could cause harm to others. It would appear Wintermute is not and that in itself is a dangerous ideal to possess. As a retired surgeon I have seen sufficient gun and knife wounds to convince me that ANY method involved to prevent the illegal importation from either countries or from state to state is to be applauded. Cost is something that can not be taken into account as human life transcends costs .

RB said...

Waiting for the accounting of the other 7 items found by Strip Search Machine.



CAPTCHA SUCKS

Anonymous said...

"...When I put my wife and children on a flight to see my in-laws I am happy everyone on the plane has undergone this intense scrutiny."

You are happy when strangers grope your innocent wife and children?

Anonymous said...

The guns, knives, and firing device can be found by a walk-through medical detector. There is no need to take naked photos or grope anyone to find such objects. There is no need to spend millions of dollars on naked body scanners only to find toothpaste.

Wintermute said...

@jimbo, when you stoop to insults, your arguments loose credibility. If you'd like to keep that credibility, cite your sources from where a single firearm was kept out of the US because of a body scanner on foreign soil kept it out. You cannot, because there are none.

As for non-metallic firearms, they have metal firing mechanisms, and even without them, would show up on x-ray.

jimbo said...

Not stooped to insults raised my game. You are so Ill informed that there is no point arguing the case with you.

Firstly in modern plastic weaponry there are no metallic parts. And

Secondly it is impossible to cite records of none events. Grow up for heavens sake.

In 24 hours I toured Chicago underworld yesterday and, with my solicitor, got 4 individuals to swear that they would not risk carrying guns through airports now because of the introduction of the newish machines.

You are obviously a cretin who has no care of saving lives whatever the cost. I pity you and all like you. Life is the most precious of things and no cost is too much to save one life.

Anonymous said...

You know.. its not bad that we have security protecting us from bad things happening. However, We are American, and the TSA has violated our civil rights on numerous occasions daily. Maybe you guys should induce a new training program for your agents, because some of the things you do goes to far. And as for the gun posts... We were told years ago when there was the "Internet Boom" To not believe everything that is said online. Show me videos of you pulling these supposed guns out of a bag and questioning a suspect.. I know Alex Jones shows video of the TSA doing wrong all the time.. prove us different...

Anonymous said...

You have nothing to hide. And pass security in a breeze. Just follow the rules and instructions and no one would need touch you , your children or wife. I go trough security numerous time in a year and never been search or have receive a patdown. My magic trick. I just read the sign at the airport go informed and follow them. Isn't that hard? Don't you think?

Wintermute said...

Anonymous said...
"You have nothing to hide. And pass security in a breeze."

Regardless of whether I have nothing to hide or not, the 4th amendment applies. Period.

"Just follow the rules and instructions"

And if the rules are unlawful?

" and no one would need touch you , your children or wife."

What about the false positives that need cleared via "enhanced patdown?" My wife was following all the rules when a BUTTON caused a false positive. This did NOT require her to be groped. And if the false alarm was near her breasts, why did her crotch need felt up? The TSO even said "Hmmm... Must be the button...."

"I go trough security numerous time in a year and never been search or have receive a patdown."

You've never been searched? Have you gone through AIT ever? You've been searched. I think you probably misspoke.

"My magic trick. I just read the sign at the airport go informed and follow them. Isn't that hard? Don't you think?"

Now you're just being insulting. Something TSA claims isn't allowed on this blog.

Wintermute said...

jimbo said...
"Not stooped to insults raised my game. You are so Ill informed that there is no point arguing the case with you."

Because you can't argue with me and simply stoop to insults.

"Firstly in modern plastic weaponry there are no metallic parts."

I notice you changed the argument from guns to weaponry. I stand by my statement that plastic guns require metal firing mechanisms.

"Secondly it is impossible to cite records of none events."

Perhaps you're forgetting what you said that I asked you to cite. You said "What most of these so called contributors fail to realise is that the reason there are so few people caught attempting to smuggle weapons etc into the USA is because of the body and bag scanners." Either you can back it up, or you're intentionally making statements that cannot be proven either way (ie, you have no numbers to back your argument up, but a negeative cannot be proven.)

"Grow up for heavens sake."

This is an example of "upping your game?" Looks like an insult to me.

"In 24 hours I toured Chicago underworld yesterday and, with my solicitor, got 4 individuals to swear that they would not risk carrying guns through airports now because of the introduction of the newish machines."

Irrelevant. Would they have tried before?

"You are obviously a cretin who has no care of saving lives whatever the cost. I pity you and all like you."

First, more insults. Second, no, not at "whatever the cost." Freedom is paid for in blood. I served my country and would have willingly paid that price.

" Life is the most precious of things"

No argument there...

" and no cost is too much to save one life."

That's where we disagree. Yet we can disagree without stooping to insults. At least I can. I suspect I am "feeding the troll," so to speak, and will be met with more insults. Please note that this is not meant as an insult. I am just pointing out that your behavior in this debate thus far has matched that of an Internet troll. If you don't want to be seen that way, then A) back up your arguments with sources and B) stop the insults. You are not "upping your game," you are making yourself look bad for stooping to insults and me look bad for feeling the need to respond.