Friday, June 21, 2013

TSA Week in Review: 57 Firearms Discovered This Week (47 Loaded)



Loaded Firearm (JAX)
Loaded Firearm (JAX)
57 Firearms Discovered This Week –Of the 57 firearms, 47 were loaded and 14 had rounds chambered. See a complete list and more photos at the bottom of this post.

Stun Gun (SAN)
Stun Gun (SAN)
Stun Guns – Six stun guns were discovered this week in carry-on bags around the nation: Two were discovered at San Diego (SAN), and the others were found at Billings (BIL), Las Vegas (LAS), Laughlin/Bullhead City (IFP), and San Francisco (SFO).

Items in the Strangest Places –It’s important to examine your bags prior to traveling to ensure no prohibited items are inside. If a prohibited item is discovered in your bag, you could be cited and quite possibly arrested by local law enforcement. Here are a few examples from this week where prohibited items were found in strange places.


  • A 3-inch belt buckle knife was discovered in a passenger’s carry-on bag at Ft. Lauderdale (FLL).
  • A 4-inch folding knife was found concealed under the lining of a passenger’s backpack at Seattle (SEA).
  • A 2½-inch knife was discovered concealed in a Denver (DEN) passenger’s thermos that contained ice and medication.
Belt Buckle Knife (FLL), Knife in Lining of Backpack (SEA)
Belt Buckle Knife (FLL), Knife in Lining of Backpack (SEA)

What Not to Say at an Airport – Statements like these not only delay the people who said them but can also inconvenience many other passengers if the checkpoint or terminal has to be evacuated:

  • After a passenger’s cooler alarmed at Memphis, he stated that the bag contained explosives. It didn’t. It contained toiletry items, a freezer pack, and foam.
  • After asking a Denver (DEN) passenger if he had any other items that needed to be removed from his bag, he stated, "I have a bomb in my bag."

Knives Discovered at (Top - Bottom) LAX, PBI, DEN, OAK
Knives Discovered at (Top - Bottom) LAX, PBI, DEN, OAK
Miscellaneous Prohibited Items - In addition to all of the other prohibited items we find weekly, our Officers also regularly find firearm components, realistic replica firearms, bb and pellet guns, Airsoft guns, brass knuckles, ammunition, batons, and a lot of sharp pointy things… 
 
Firearms Discovered This Week in Carry-On Bags
Loaded guns discovered in carry-on bags.
Guns Discovered at (L-R) CVG, CVG, ATL, LAS, PBI, LBB, SEA
Loaded guns discovered in carry-on bags.
Guns Discovered at (L-R) ECP, IND, DEN, SGF, ATL, PIT, BNA, CAK
Loaded guns discovered in carry-on bags.
Guns Discovered at (L-R) JAX, AEX, ATL, BHM, BOI, DEN, LAS, IAH
Loaded guns discovered in carry-on bags.
Guns Discovered at (L-R) ONT, MSY, RDU, SAT, SRQ
Loaded guns discovered in carry-on bags.
Guns Discovered at (L-R) HOU, LAS, SJU, FAI
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. The passenger can face a penalty as high as $7,500.00. 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.

*In order to provide a timely weekly update, I compile my data from a preliminary report. The year-end numbers will vary slightly (increase) from what I report in the weekly updates. However, any monthly, midyear, or end-of-year numbers TSA provides on this blog or elsewhere will not be estimates.

If you haven’t seen it yet, make sure you check out our post highlighting the dangerous, scary, and downright unusual items our officers found in 2012. The 2011 list can be found here.


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

41 comments:

Anonymous said...

And it's broken record time! Box it. Tag it. Declare it. Keep it. It's really quite simple and common sense. But then again, common sense is so rare these days that it might as well be a superpower.

Anonymous said...

Who benefits from these weekly TSA blogs? Allow me to answer my own question..."TSA Employees".

This blog is yet another example of how TSA employees believe the American taxpayer exists to serve them, and not the other way round. The TSA is a national disgrace.

Anonymous said...

Yet again, absolutely nothing found with the expensive, intrusive, and obviously ineffective full body scanners.

Grateful said...

Talk about a broken record, why is it that someone has to make a snarky comment about the TSA? They are just doing their job. I wonder how Anonymous will feel when someone does get on HIS plane with a loaded gun, and shoots him, because no one checked? Leave them alone. Thanks TSA, from the majority of us.

Anonymous said...

I'm a fairly frequent air traveler - both domestic and internationally and find this blog both informative and reassuring. To say that the only beneficiaries are TSA employees' sense of self aggrandizement is nonsensical. What I find most informative about the blog is how thoughtlessly naieve some people remain when they carry prohibited items or how foolish they are for trying to get away with it.

Anonymous said...

I'm a fairly frequent air traveler - both domestic and internationally and find this blog both informative and reassuring. To say that the only beneficiaries are TSA employees' sense of self aggrandizement is nonsensical. What I find most informative about the blog is how thoughtlessly naieve some people remain when they carry prohibited items or how foolish they are for trying to get away with it.

Heather said...

I totally agree with you! Thanks TSA!

Frequent Flyer said...

I travel on at least four flights per week, and would of course rather not be inconvenienced by the often time consuming security lines. Let's remember, this vitally important process is slowed down only by those who enter security uninformed about procedure, or those who attempt to bring onto planes the items described here. If we all followed procedure and obeyed the law, passing through security would be effortless and immediate.

Sandra said...

Hey, Bob, looks to me like you were quite busy rounding up support this morning, weren't you?


screen shot

Anonymous said...

Frequent Flyer - if that was true, then TSA would function much more efficiently and effectively. The fact is, TSA ignores the law all the time; remains inconsistent from checkpoint to checkpoint and even TSO to TSO. Many so-called "officers" have taken it upon themselves to harass, belittle, and intimidate passengers who have legitimate questions and concerns about the law and how it is being applied. Speaking of the law and the constitution, TSA is still trying to fine a young man who engaged in non-violent protest by quoting the Fourth Amendment written on his chest - even though the court said that it was within his rights under the First Amendment. Now who is breaking the law?

Anonymous said...

For the person who duplicated their response "I'm a fairly frequent air traveler - both domestic and internationally and find this blog both informative and reassuring. To say that the only beneficiaries are TSA employees' sense of self aggrandizement is nonsensical."

*********************************

Since you posted the same response twice (and the TSA moderator allowed it), it's quite obvious you like repetition along with the TSA. It's been my experience that organizations and/or people who repeat the same messages are nonsensical.

Listing a weekly litany of prohibited items found by the TSA is not informative or useful for the overwhelming majority of law-abiding American travelers. The primary purpose of this blog is to self-aggrandize the TSA, not inform the public.

Anonymous said...

Dear Grateful,

Metal detectors detect guns better than the expensive full body scanners. That is the point Anonymous is making.

another Anonymous

Anonymous said...

Passing security would also be a lot faster if there were no shoe removal or body scanners, as just about any other country in the World (with no loss of security).

Anonymous said...

yet nothing about the attempted theft under color of authority @ DEN or the unprofessional attitude towards a a traveling teenager @ LAX.

Then there is the little gem in the consumerist about the retaliatory actions of a TSA employee @ BOS that are counter to published policy.

care to explain Curtis???

Chris in HSV said...

Nothing on the blog about the TSA agent harassing a 15 year old girl?

http://www.nbcnews.com/travel/tsa-agent-accused-harassing-15-year-old-girl-over-shirt-6C10353666

Chris in HSV said...

Nearly two years ago, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit ordered TSA to do a notice-and-comment rulemaking on its nude body scanning policy. Few rules “impose [as] directly and significantly upon so many members of the public” as the use of body scanning machines, the court said. Its ruling required the agency to publish its policy, take comments from the public, and consider them in formalizing its rules.

The last day to comment on the proposed rules is Monday, June 24th. You can submit your comments until then.

http://www.regulations.gov/#!submitComment;D=TSA-2013-0004-0001

Chris in HSV said...

Open the baby food jar or subject your wife to a pat down? Really? The TSA really has it together!

http://consumerist.com/2013/06/19/the-tsas-solution-for-my-reluctance-to-open-baby-food-jars-a-pat-down/

Chris in HSV said...

Nothing about the Inspector General's summation of the viability and success of TSA nearly 1 billion dollar screening activities?

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/06/05/us/report-says-tsa-screening-program-not-objective.html

RB said...

57 guns founds at TSA checkpoints.

And TSA claims to be a deterrent to terrorist.

One thing that is clear, a terrorist on a mission is not going to do anything to draw attention to themselves. TSA's continued Electronic Strip Searches do nothing to improve security.

What would improve airport security would be to screen airport workers who can and do bring in all manner of contraband.

Anonymous said...

Public Comments for Passenger Screening Using Advance Imaging Technology - open until June 24:

http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketBrowser;rpp=25;so=DESC;sb=postedDate;po=0;dct=PS;D=TSA-2013-0004

As of June 24, 2013 2:15pm Eastern, over 4000 comments posted to read. Most are against the AIT scanners, but there are a few who approve.

Make your voice heard on this issue, whichever side you're on.

Melissa said...

Thanks for doing your job well. I went through two American airports this past year and was impressed at how quickly and efficiently everything went. And people complain about the full body scanners? Come on. I actually think those are kind of neat. I love reading about the stupid things people try to bring on their carry on luggage...

Melissa said...

If you are scared of a pat down, you clearly have something to hide.

Wintermute said...

Grateful said...

"They are just doing their job."

This is not a valid defense for violating the law of our land.

Frequent Flyer said...

"If we all followed procedure and obeyed the law, passing through security would be effortless and immediate."

If the TSA actually followed the law, security might actually happen. As it is, TSA makes us all much less safe than we need to be, and that's before the Constitutional debate even begins.

RB said...

Woman slashes self at JFK


Wondering if TSA will make mention of this TSA screening failure in the next TSA weekly stats?

"Port Authority and Emergency Service Unit police responded to the scene and found five boxcutter blades inside the badly bleeding woman’s purse. She claimed she used the items for her job as a hospital lab worker in Washington state.

Police were investigating how the woman was able to carry the prohibited items past TSA screening to the bathroom."

Good job TSA, you only missed FIVE RAZOR BLADES this time. How's those TSA Electronic Strip Search Machines working for ya?

TSA FAIL!!

Posted 06/25/13 11:47 EST

All First Amendment Civil Rights violations will be reported to DHS OIG.



Anonymous said...

Melissa said...

If you are scared of a pat down, you clearly have something to hide.

---

Yes. I, for one, like to keep my dignity concealed.

Clayton said...

Exerpts from a report by:
CONGRESSMAN MARSHA BLACKBURN
U.S. HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
112th Congress
May 30, 2012
...
The individuals who are featured in this report are not only abusing their public positions but they
are using their jobs to commit federal crimes against the very public they are sworn to protect. This problem has only exacerbated itself since 2005 when TSA administratively reclassified airport security screeners as Transportation Security Officers. To make matters worse, TSA upgraded TSOs uniforms to reflect those of federal law enforcement officers, complete with metal officer badges. Despite their new title of officer, TSOs receive zero federal law enforcement training and as you will see in this report, many TSOs have displayed little respect for the titles they hold and
uniforms they wear.
The purpose of this report is to demonstrate the urgent need to improve our nation’s airport screening operations. Despite the ever present threat of domestic terrorism, many Transportation Security Officers have proven time and time again that they are unqualified to serve as one of our nation’s last lines of defense.
...
Collectively, the crimes these individuals have been arrested for illustrates a deepening problem within TSA’s training and hiring practices that makes the United States more susceptible to a domestic threat.
...
Many of the problems associated with Transportation Security Officers and Behavior Detection Officers (BDOs) stem from TSA’s hiring practices and insufficient use of background checks. As Chairman John Mica and Chairman Darrell Issa highlighted in their report “A Decade Later: A Call for TSA Reform”, despite TSA‘s claims that it operates as an intelligent risk-based organization, TSA advertised for employment at the Washington Reagan National Airport on pizza boxes and on advertisements above pumps at discount gas stations in the D.C. area.
It has also been reported to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure on multiple occasions that TSA does not consistently conduct criminal and credit background checks on new and existing employees.
...
The Combating Terrorism Center at West Point has also raised concerns about background checks. In the November issue of the CTC Sentinel, Ben Brandt detailed significant vulnerabilities in the approach to background checks “which has proven notably unsuccessful at stopping members of street gangs from gaining employment and carrying out criminal activities such as narcotrafficking, baggage
theft, and prostitution at airports nationwide."
As this report clearly shows, one of the greatest threats to airline security is the ever present insider threat. When TSOs or BDOs become corrupted and abuse their limited authority, it puts the traveling public at great risk to terrorist threats.
...
Furthermore, as earlier highlighted in this report, TSOs and BDOs have zero federal law enforcement training despite their federal law enforcement titles, uniforms and metal badges. In many cases, TSOs and BDOs have less training than security guards in most states. For example, in California, security guards may receive permits to carry firearms, tear gas and batons.
...

Full report here:
http://blackburn.house.gov/uploadedfiles/blackburn_tso_report.pdf

Clayton said...

Good thing he was on our side...not even a pat-down stopped him...

http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/newark_tsa_bomb_boozled_eTIZBp2X7B299qO5WCWvAK

Anonymous said...

I think that this website (not just the blogs, but the other features as well) are extremely helpful. Thanks for putting them up! As an aerospace engineer, please understand that we do A LOT to make sure that people are safe, and that's more than the aircraft: it includes the TSA, FAA, pilots, ground crews, maintenance crews, etc. We know you value timeliness and privacy, but we've been caught off guard before, and us in the industry really don't want it to happen any more, and neither do you. If you're courteous to the workers, you might find they're nicer than you would think.

Also, I carry around a pocketknife most days (never know when you'll need it in the lab), and then I go on here and am reminded it's not just another cell phone or set of keys.

Wintermute said...

Melissa said...
"If you are scared of a pat down, you clearly have something to hide."

Look up "logical fallacy" and let me know which one this is ;)

Anonymous said...

Melissa said...
If you are scared of a pat down, you clearly have something to hide.

*cough* Fourth Amendment *cough*

Susan Richart said...

RB, are you also having trouble getting this blog to post your comments?

"All First Amendment Civil Rights violations will be reported to DHS OIG."

I guess I'll have to start to use that also.

Anonymous said...

Hey Bob,

I guess you didn't like the named commenter above being outed as a TSA employee? Sounds like someone has something to hide.

Wintermute said...

Anonymous said...

"If you're courteous to the workers, you might find they're nicer than you would think."

First, no matter how nice they are, they are still breaking the law and violating my rights. Second, this sounds a bit like the "but she was asking for it" defense to me.

Anonymous said...

Talk about a broken record, why is it that someone has to make a snarky comment about someone making a snarky comment about the TSA? They are just exercising their first amendment rights, as guaranteed under the constitution. I wonder how Grateful will feel when someone does censor HIS comments and tell him that he's not allowed to say things that other people might not agree with. Leave them alone. Thanks Anonymous, from the majority of us.

Anonymous said...

Could a math/finance wiz do a cost analysis of having an armed Air Marshall in every flight vs this over-reaching, expensive and demeaning process?

Anonymous said...

Did any of these weapons belong to people who constituted a threat?

Anonymous said...

Body scanners are NOT in place to detect guns. they are there to deter smuggling of NON METALLIC contraband like EXPLOSIVES. Remember the underwear bomber? He walked right through the metal detector with a crotch full of explosives. That's why TSA started with body scanners. Why remove shoes? Google Richard Reid. Why restrict liquids? Google Bojinka Plot. When the bad guys change tactics, so do the rules.
To all the complainers please educate yourselves, know the rules, and arrive to the airport early. If no terrorists are caught and no planes go down then it is a job well done because that means they don't want to try an attack through air travel.
TSA is a government agency and I am sure they discover things that that can't be shared with us.

Anonymous said...

Thank God for the TSA!!! They've got a tremendously hard job - just think what might have happened if the boneheads who tried to carry these items onbard actually had succeeded. All you critics would be screaming.

Anonymous said...

the tsa website's link to "prohibited items" hasn't loaded in two days. doesn't this seem a bit ironic to anyone. maybe not ironic - maybe just pathetic. i'm trying to check if an item I want to carry on is prohibited but the tsa can't even load a web site to tell me yes or no. what a worthless group of bottom-feeders off the tax system. wish my tax dollars were better-used.

Wintermute said...

Anonymous said...

"To all the complainers please educate yourselves,"

I suggest you do the same... As red-team tests have shown the body scanners ineffective at detecting underwear bombs. Which, by the way, was not a viable plot. Neither was the shoe bomb. Ditto for the liquids plot. So while you may know of the existence of these plots, this does not show you are any more educated that the persons you believe are not.

Mark Capstone said...

How many times does someone have to hear it to understand that some things are just not allowed?