Local man arrested with loaded gun at BWI Airport checkpoint on 19th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks

Local Press Release
Friday, September 11, 2020
TSA officers at BWI detected this loaded handgun in a traveler’s carry-on bag on Sept. 11. (TSA photo)

LINTHICUM, Md. – Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officers at Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport (BWI) caught a Prince George’s County, Maryland, man with a .45 caliber handgun loaded with seven bullets at the checkpoint early this morning, Friday, Sept. 11.

“On this, the 19th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks on our nation, it is extremely disturbing to see a traveler attempt to bring a loaded handgun onto an airplane,” said Andrea R. Mishoe, TSA’s Federal Security Director for Maryland. “Guns are prohibited in the cabins of airplanes. It’s nothing new. In fact, it’s a law that has been in place long before TSA even existed,” she said. “Today’s gun catch is the second one within the last two days. Our officers are skilled at their jobs and are United Together, to Protect our Homeland.

“Today we all take a moment to reflect on the tragic events of Sept. 11, 2001. TSA was created in a time of this nation’s urgent need and we remain just as committed to our mission today as we were 19 years ago,” Mishoe said. “An attack on our transportation system will not happen again. Not on our watch.”

Shortly after 5 a.m. today, a TSA officer spotted a handgun in a man’s carry-on bag while it was inside the checkpoint X-ray machine. TSA immediately alerted the Maryland Transportation Authority Police, who arrived at the checkpoint, confiscated the firearm and detained the man, a resident of Oxon Hill, Maryland, for questioning before arresting him on weapons charges. The man told officials that he forgot that he had his loaded gun with him.

“Passengers who own firearms need to know where they are at all times and they should never bring a gun to a security checkpoint,” Mishoe said. “The proper way to travel with a handgun is to make sure it is unloaded, packed in a locked hard-sided case and taken to the airline check-in counter to be declared. The airline representative will make sure the gun is transported in the belly of the aircraft, never in the cabin of the plane.”

Guns caught at BWI Airport checkpoints 2016 to 2020







(As of 9-10-20)

Guns caught at BWI






TSA reserves the right to issue a civil penalty to travelers who have guns with them at a checkpoint. 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. 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. The complete list of civil penalties is posted online. If a traveler with a gun is a member of TSA PreCheck™, that individual will lose their TSA PreCheck™ privileges.

When an individual shows up at a checkpoint with a firearm, the checkpoint lane comes to a standstill until the police resolve the incident. Guns at checkpoints can delay travelers from getting to their gates.

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

TSA has details on how to properly travel with a firearm posted on its website. Travelers should also contact their airline as they may have additional requirements for traveling with firearms and ammunition.