ROCHESTER, N.Y. – A woman was stopped by the Transportation Security Administration after a TSA officer detected a loaded gun in her carry-on bag at Greater Rochester International Airport (ROC) Saturday, Sept. 9.
The woman, a resident of Whitakers, North Carolina, on the border of Edgecombe and Nash counties, was found to be in possession of a .357 caliber handgun that was loaded with six bullets when a TSA officer spotted the gun in a duffle bag in the checkpoint X-ray machine on Saturday.
The TSA officer spotted the gun in the checkpoint X-ray machine, and the Monroe County Sheriff’s Department was contacted, responded to the checkpoint, took possession of the firearm and arrested the woman on a weapons charge. There was no impact to airport operations.
The woman told officials that the gun belonged to her boyfriend and that when she was packing to return to North Carolina, she did not realize that the loaded gun was in the duffle bag.
It marks the fourth time that TSA officers at ROC have spotted a firearm at the checkpoint so far this year. No guns were detected at the airport’s checkpoint in 2016.
“These incidents bring to light the critical role that the Transportation Security Administration, and the dedication of the officers assigned to the Greater Rochester International Airport, demonstrate in protecting the flying public--by keeping loaded firearms from being allowed onto a plane,” said TSA Upstate New York Federal Security Director Bart Johnson. “It is also a stark reminder of the importance that passengers play in making sure that they stop and think about what they have in their carry-on bags to ensure that they do not bring any prohibited items to an airport checkpoint.”
TSA Firearms Catches at Greater Rochester International Airport
Number of Firearms Caught in 2013
Number of Firearms Caught in 2014
Number of Firearms Caught in 2015
Number of Firearms Caught in 2016
Number of Firearms Caught to Date in 2017
Greater Rochester International Airport (ROC)
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 $12,000.
TSA’s website has details on how to properly travel with a firearm. Airlines may have additional requirements for traveling with firearms and ammunition. Travelers should also contact their airline regarding firearm and ammunition carriage policies.