MILWAUKEE – Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officers stopped a woman from carrying a loaded .380 caliber handgun and a magazine with seven bullets onto an airplane at Milwaukee Mitchell International Airport (MKE) Thursday.
At approximately 6:30 a.m., a TSA officer detected the gun in the local woman’s belongings. TSA officials immediately alerted the Milwaukee County Sheriff’s Department and a deputy responded who removed the passenger and weapon away from the checkpoint.
“The holiday travel season is coming up soon and we are reminding travelers to be mindful of the whereabouts of their firearms,” said Wisconsin’s TSA Federal Security Director Mark Lendvay. “The safety and security of all remain our top priority. The detection of firearms and prohibited items at the airport security checkpoints can cause delays and can lead to travelers missing their flights.
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. The complete list of civil penalties is on the TSA website. If a traveler with a gun is a member of TSA PreCheck®, that individual will lose their TSA PreCheck privileges for a period of time.
This is the 10th firearm detected at MKE this year. A total of 16 were detected at MKE security checkpoints last year.
Passengers are permitted to travel with firearms in checked baggage if they are unloaded, packed separately from ammunition in a locked hardback case and declared at the airline check-in counter.
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.