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Albion woman cited for bringing loaded handgun to Philadelphia airport

Staff Reports Posted 14 September 2020 at 10:52 am

TSA photo: TSA officers detected this loaded handgun in a woman’s carry-on bag at Philadelphia International Airport on Sept. 12.

PHILADELPHIA – An Albion woman has been cited and could be fined at least $4,100 for bringing a loaded handgun to the Philadelphia airport on Saturday, the Transportation Security Administration said today.

The woman, whose name wasn’t released, allegedly brought a .22-caliber handgun with nine bullets, including one in the chamber, at one of the security checkpoints at Philadelphia International Airport. TSA, in a news release, said the woman was from the Albion in Orleans County, and not Albion, Pa.

The gun was spotted by a TSA officer in the checkpoint X-ray machine. TSA contacted the Philadelphia Police, who arrived at the checkpoint and confiscated the gun along with a magazine loaded with eight bullets and a single loose bullet. Police cited the woman, TSA officials said in a news release today.

“This gun was caught by our TSA officers just one day after the nation observed the 19th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks on our homeland,” said William L. Myers, TSA’s Assistant Federal Security Director for the airport. “The anniversary was marked by extensive media coverage and the date itself is seared into the minds of Americans. Yet one day later this traveler did not realize that she was not allowed to bring her loaded gun onto her flight. The fact that guns are not allowed to be carried onto aircraft is a law that has been in place decades before TSA existed. This individual now faces stiff Federal financial civil penalties for her mistake.”

This was the 17th gun detected at checkpoint this year by TSA at the Philadelphia airport. There 20 in 2019, 25 in 2018, and 35 guns detected in 2017.

TSA reserves the right to issue a civil penalty to travelers who have guns with them at a checkpoint. A typical first offense for carrying a loaded handgun into a checkpoint is $4,100 and can go as high as $13,669 depending on any mitigating circumstances.

This applies to travelers with or without concealed gun carry permits because even though an individual may have a concealed carry permit, it does not allow for a firearm to be carried onto an airplane.

When an individual shows up at a checkpoint with a firearm, the checkpoint lane comes to a standstill until the police resolve the incident. Guns at checkpoints can delay travelers from getting to their gates.

Passengers are permitted to travel with firearms in checked baggage if they are properly packaged and declared at their airline ticket counter. Firearms must be unloaded, packed in a hard-sided case, locked, and packed separately from ammunition. Firearm possession laws vary by state and locality.

TSA has details on how to properly travel with a firearm posted on its website. Travelers should also contact their airline as they may have additional requirements for traveling with firearms and ammunition.

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