RICHMOND — A Yorktown man was cited by the police after Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officers at Richmond International Airport caught him with a loaded handgun in his carry-on bag.
The 9mm handgun was loaded with 12 bullets, including one in the chamber.
It was the third gun caught at the airport so far this month and the ninth that has been caught at the security checkpoint this year.
TSA stopped the man after his carry-on bag triggered an alarm in the security checkpoint X-ray unit. TSA alerted airport police, who responded, confiscated the handgun and cited the man on a weapons violation.
“In addition to being cited by the police, this individual also is facing a stiff Federal financial civil penalty, which could run into the thousands of dollars,” said Robin “Chuck” Burke, TSA’s Federal Security Director for the airport. “Airports are crowded with travel volume as high as it has been since the start of the pandemic and bringing guns and other prohibited items to a security checkpoint slows down the line for everyone.”
TSA reserves the right to issue a civil penalty to travelers who have guns with them at a checkpoint. A concealed gun carry permit does not allow for a firearm to be carried onto an airplane. The complete list of civil penalties is posted online. A member of TSA PreCheck, will also lose TSA PreCheck privileges.
Passengers may travel with firearms only in checked baggage. Firearms must be properly packaged and declared at the airline ticket counter. TSA has details on how to properly travel with a firearm posted on its website. A complete list of civil penalties is also posted.
Firearm possession laws vary by state and locality. Travelers should also contact their airline as they may have additional requirements for traveling with firearms and ammunition.
TSA officers detected 5,972 firearms at airport security checkpoints nationwide in 2021, 86% of which were loaded.