TSA catches Oklahoma man with loaded handgun at Iowa Airport

Mike Seals - November 30, 2020 11:52 pm

Transportation Security Administration agents in Des Moines say they caught an Oklahoma man with a .380 caliber handgun loaded with six bullets, plus an additional 13 bullets in his carry-on bag at Des Moines International Airport.

TSA agents said the incident happened on Nov. 24, just two days before the busy Thanksgiving holiday travel period.

Des Moines police were notified and confiscated the firearm from the traveler before citing him on a weapons charge.

“Individuals who want to fly with their firearms are permitted to do so. This traveler did it the wrong way,” said John Bright, TSA’s Federal Security Director for Iowa. “The right way to transport a firearm is to unload it. Then pack it in a hard-sided case and lock the case. Upon arriving to the terminal, take the locked case to the airline check-in counter and declare that you want to fly with it. The airline will make sure it is stored securely in the underbelly of the plane so that nobody has access to it during the flight.”

TSA officials said this is the sixth firearm confiscated at the Des Moines International Airport in 2020. There were 12 guns found there in 2019.

“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,” TSA officials said. “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.”

TSA officials did not name the suspect in the latest incident.


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