BALTIMORE - A Washington, D.C., man was arrested Thursday, August 20 after Transportation Security Administration officers caught the man trying to carry a .40 caliber semi-automatic handgun past a security checkpoint at Baltimore Washington International-Thurgood Marshal Airport (BWI).
TSA officers detected the handgun, loaded with eight rounds, among the man’s carry-on items as he was passing through the airport checkpoint yesterday afternoon. The TSA officer who was staffing the checkpoint X-ray machine detected the handgun inside the traveler’s carry-on bag as it passed along the conveyor belt.
It marks the sixth gun that TSA officers have detected at BWI so far this calendar year and the second one this month. Last year, TSA officers detected 14 firearms at the airport.
TSA officers contacted the Maryland Transportation Authority Police who responded to the checkpoint, confiscated the firearm and arrested the man on weapons charges. The man was originally ticketed to fly to San Francisco. There was no impact to airport operations.
As a reminder, firearms, firearm parts and ammunition are not permitted in carry-on bags, but can be transported in checked bags if they are unloaded, properly packed and declared to the airline. Travelers who bring firearms to the checkpoint are subject to possible criminal charges from law enforcement and civil penalties from TSA of up to $11,000.
Passengers are responsible for the contents of bags they bring to the security checkpoint, and TSA’s advice to passengers is to look through bags thoroughly before coming to the airport to make sure there are no illegal or prohibited items. Firearm possession laws vary by state and locality and travelers should familiarize themselves with state and local firearm laws for each point of travel prior to departure.
For more information about TSA prohibited items, please check the prohibited items list and the traveling with firearms page. Airlines may have additional requirements for traveling with firearms and ammunition. Travelers should also contact their airline regarding firearm and ammunition carriage policies.