MILWAUKEE – Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officers prevented a handgun from making its way onboard an airplane at Milwaukee Mitchell International Airport (MKE) Monday, Sept. 13.
During the routine screening of carry-on luggage, a TSA officer spotted the image of a handgun on the X-ray screen. The incident occurred around 11:20 a.m., and TSA officials immediately alerted the Milwaukee County Sheriff’s Office. A deputy responded to the checkpoint, confiscated the firearm, which was loaded, and issued a citation.
“It’s extremely disappointing that passengers continue to bring firearms to the airport checkpoint,” Wisconsin TSA Federal Security Director Mark Lendvay said. “Even when it’s done unintentionally, this is unsafe and can seriously slow or shut down security screening until the police resolve the incident.”
TSA may impose civil penalties of up to $13,910 per violation per person. 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.
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. Firearm possession laws vary by state and locality. Travelers should check for firearm laws in the jurisdictions they are flying to and from.
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.