PITTSBURGH – Transportation Security Administration officers at Pittsburgh International Airport caught two guns in the last three days at the airport checkpoint.
A woman from Cartagena, Columbia, was caught on Saturday, Jan. 11, trying to bring her .38 caliber handgun through the security checkpoint. A woman from Ohio was cau
ght today (Jan. 13) trying to bring a .22 caliber handgun loaded with five bullets past the checkpoint. In each instance, the guns were spotted by a TSA officer in carry-on bags as they entered the checkpoint X-ray machine. TSA contacted the Allegheny County Police, which responded to the checkpoint, confiscated the firearms, and detained the women for questioning prior to allowing them to catch their flights. The incidents were not related.
When an individual shows up at a checkpoint with a firearm, the checkpoint lane comes to a standstill until the police resolve the incident. With the busy travel season in full swing, guns at checkpoints can delay travelers from getting to their gates.
As a reminder, individuals who bring firearms to the checkpoint are subject to possible criminal charges from law enforcement. Even travelers with concealed firearm permits are not allowed to bring guns onto airplanes in their carry-on bags. If you’re a TSA Pre✓® member, then you could even lose your status. In addition, TSA has the authority to assess civil penalties of up to $13,333 for weapons violations. A typical first offense for carrying a handgun into a checkpoint is $4,100. The complete list of penalties is posted online.
TSA has details on how to properly travel with a firearm posted on its website. Travelers should also contact their airline regarding firearm and ammunition carriage policies as they may have additional requirements.