NEWARK, NJ – Transportation Security Administration officers at Newark Liberty International Airport stopped a Monmouth County, NJ, man from bringing a handgun onto an airplane yesterday, March 21st. It was the third gun caught at the airport so far this year.
TSA officers caught the .32 caliber handgun in the man’s carry-on bag as it entered the checkpoint X-ray machine. The traveler, a resident of Freehold, NJ, was arrested by Port Authority Police.
Thursday’s gun catch marks the third gun caught at TSA checkpoints at Newark Liberty International Airport so far this year. Two handguns were caught on February 18th at the airport.
Last year, 14 guns were caught at the airport’s checkpoints, which set a record for the most firearms caught at the airport in one calendar year.
Nationwide last year, 4,239 firearms were discovered in carry-on bags at checkpoints across the country, averaging about 11.6 firearms per day, approximately a 7 percent increase nationally in firearm discoveries from the total of 3,957 detected in 2017. Eighty-six percent of firearms detected at checkpoints last year were loaded and nearly 34 percent had a bullet in the chamber.
|Firearms Caught||2017||2018||2019 (As of 3-21)|
|Newark Liberty International Airport||6||14||3|
As a reminder, individuals who bring firearms to the checkpoint are subject to possible criminal charges from law enforcement. Even travelers with concealed firearm permits are not allowed to bring guns onto airplanes. In addition, TSA has the authority to assess civil penalties of up to $13,000 for weapons violations. A typical first offense for carrying a handgun into a checkpoint is $3,900. The complete list of penalties is posted online here.
TSA has details on how to properly travel with a firearm posted on its web site here. Airlines may have additional requirements for traveling with firearms and ammunition. Travelers should also contact their airline regarding firearm and ammunition carriage policies.