Screeners stop loaded firearm at John Glenn Columbus International Airport

Local Press Release
Wednesday, July 15, 2020

COLUMBUS, Ohio - Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officers stop a male passenger from bringing a loaded firearm through a security checkpoint at John Glenn Columbus International Airport (CMH) checkpoint Monday. 

At approximately 4:25 p.m., during the x-ray of the passenger’s carry-on bag, a loaded Smith & Wesson M&P Shield 9mm firearm was found. TSA officers coordinated with the airport police department, who took possession of the firearm and the ammo. The man, was questioned and stated he forgot the firearm was in his possession. The airport police escorted the man away and cited him for criminal trespassing and seized his firearm.

 “Our TSA officers are dedicated to ensuring the security of our passengers and flight crews departing from Columbus by intercepting firearms and other dangerous items prior to making it onboard an aircraft,” said Don Barker, TSA’s Federal Security Director for Ohio. “I commend the TSA officers and the Columbus Regional Airport Authority Police department for working jointly in this effort.”

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

This is the 8th firearm detected by TSA officers at CMH security checkpoints in 2020. A total of 29 were detected there last year.

Those who bring firearms to the checkpoint are subject to possible criminal charges. 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. Guns are prohibited items in airports and in the passenger compartments of airplanes, even with state-issued concealed firearm permits.

In addition to potential criminal charges, passengers who bring firearms to a checkpoint face civil penalties from TSA:

For more information about TSA prohibited items, please follow these links: