HENRICO COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — Security confiscated a gun from a Richmond Airport traveler’s baggage and arrested him Sunday.
The North Carolina traveler was carrying a loaded handgun in his carry-on bag with five bullets, including one in the chamber, when Transportation Security Administration officers saw the firearm through the airport checkpoint X-ray screening device and confiscated the weapon.
The day had heightened awareness about airport security on the 21st anniversary of the 2001 coordinated attacks, so TSA acted quickly.
When the security officers saw the gun in the bag they alerted airport police, confiscated the weapon and arrested the man.
“You would think that our nation’s high awareness of the happenings of September 11, 2001 would remind people that TSA is on the job to help ensure that another catastrophic incident does not happen again,” Robin “Chuck” Burke, TSA’s Federal Security Director for the Richmond Airport said in press release.
“Especially on this solemn day, this traveler should have known better than to try to carry a firearm through the security checkpoint and onto a flight. Instead he was arrested and faces a stiff financial civil penalty.”
The TSA can issue a federal civil penalty to travelers who have guns with them at a security checkpoint. The fee can possibly reach up to thousands of dollars, according to information from the federal agency.
It is not the first time that a passenger has brought a weapon through security and these items have been confiscated.
As of this Sunday, security at the Richmond airport has caught 14 guns on passengers. Last year, 21 weapons were nabbed at the airport security. In 2020, that number totaled 22.