Big knife catch at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport

Wednesday, June 29, 2022
Knives at DCA photo

Why would anyone pack 23 knives in their carry-on bag? To those of us who wear the uniform daily it defies the imagination, yet that is exactly what happened recently at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA).   

Officer Moody photo
Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport TSA Officer Craig Moody (Photo by Barbara Smith)


DCA TSA Officer Craig Moody located the knives in a passenger’s carry-on luggage when it entered the checkpoint’s X-ray machine. He alerted DCA Supervisory TSA Officer (STSO) James Crum of his find. After a quick review of the image, Crum removed the bag from the X-ray tunnel for further inspection.

After screening two more bags, Moody encountered a bag with a pair of brass knuckles. “Once I confirmed that was also not a threat image projection image, I informed STSO Crum and STSO Laquana Brown of the additional discovery,” said Moody.

Throwing knives photo
Throwing knives discovered by Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport TSA officers. (Photo courtesy of TSA DCA)

Among the items pulled from the bag were nine disposable scalpels, eight folding, locking-blade knives, three martial arts throwing knives, one dagger, one switchblade and a pair of brass knuckles.

“When passengers have prohibited items among their carry-on items, it slows down the screening process,” said John Busch, DCA Federal Security Director. “Travelers play a role in the efficiency of checkpoint screening by knowing what should and should not be packed in a carry-on bag.”

The Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority Police were alerted. They responded to the checkpoint and issued the man a citation.

“Even in the chaotic environment of the screening checkpoint, the TSA officers at our airport do an amazing job every day by keeping dangerous items out of the aircraft cabin,” Busch said. “It’s important to acknowledge them and the significance of their mission.”

By Wayne Carey, Strategic Communications & Public Affairs