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Ocean County Man Arrested After TSA Catches him with Loaded Handgun at Newark Airport


Police arrested an Ocean County man after Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officers prevented him from carrying a loaded handgun onto his flight on Friday, May 27, at Newark Liberty International Airport. 

It was the ninth gun caught at one of the airport checkpoints so far this year.

The handgun was detected when the TSA officer who was staffing a checkpoint X-ray monitor in Terminal A spotted the weapon inside the man’s carry-on bag. 

TSA officials then alerted Port Authority Police, who confiscated the handgun and arrested the man on weapons charges.

The New Egypt resident claimed that he forgot that he had placed the firearm into his carry-on bag.

“Bringing a deadly weapon such as a loaded handgun to a security checkpoint is a very serious offense,” said Thomas Carter, TSA’s Federal Security Director for New Jersey. 

“Responsible gun owners know where their firearm is at all times. It’s an important part of being a responsible gun owner. You don’t toss it into a bag that you plan to take to the airport. This individual now faces a stiff federal financial civil penalty.”

TSA has details on how to properly travel with a firearm posted on its website.

Bringing a gun to an airport checkpoint carries a federal civil penalty because TSA reserves the right to issue a civil penalty to travelers who have guns and gun parts with them at a checkpoint. 

Civil penalties for bringing a handgun into a checkpoint can stretch into thousands of dollars, depending on mitigating circumstances. 

This applies to travelers with or without concealed gun carry permits. Even though an individual may have a concealed carry permit, it does not allow a firearm to be carried onto an airplane. 

The complete list of civil penalties is posted online. 

Additionally, if a traveler with a gun is a member of TSA PreCheck®, that individual will lose their TSA PreCheck privileges.

Firearm possession laws vary by state and locality and passengers should do their homework to ensure that they are not violating any local firearm laws. 

Travelers should also contact their airline as they may have additional requirements for traveling with firearms and ammunition.

Last year TSA officers detected 5,972 guns at security checkpoints nationwide and 86 percent of them were loaded.  

TSA firearms catches at Newark Liberty International Airport checkpoints, 2017 to 2022