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Tag: airport

Should TSA Fire Staffers After 11 Passengers Weren’t Screened at JFK Airport?

1024px-welcome_john_f-_kennedy_international_airport_signBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Eleven passengers managed to get past a checking point at JFK Airport without being screened last week, prompting outrage from law enforcement.

Although three of those passengers set off a metal-detector alarm, they were able to walk on without the TSA alerting Port Authority police for two hours.

In a statement, the TSA wrote, “Once our review is complete, TSA will discipline and retrain employees.”

The TSA pledged to take “appropriate action” against the responsible workers.

In an editorial last week, the New York Post called for the termination of the employees involved. 

Retraining. Appropriate action. How about fired? Sorry, no: TSA staff are a protected branch of the American Federation of Government Employees, one with the hilarious motto: “Stronger Union, Safer Skies.”

Private-sector workers who mess up so badly as to put lives in jeopardy would be gone in a heartbeat. Heck, they’d be fired for far less serious breaches.

Somewhere along the road to making America great again, Mr. President, how about privatizing the damn TSA to end all the maddening “security theater?”

Other Stories of Interest

Passengers on Domestic Flight Forced to Show ID to Border Officials

1024px-welcome_john_f-_kennedy_international_airport_sign

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Passengers of a domestic Delta flight were shocked when they were forced to show their identity documents to Customs and Border Protection agents after arriving at John F. Kennedy airport on Wednesday evening.

A CBP spokesman told Rolling Stone that it’s “nothing new” to request identification during a domestic flight, a legally questionable claim. 

“We were told we couldn’t disembark without showing our documents,” passenger Anne Garrett tweeted.

The Rolling Stone wrote:

In a statement to Rolling Stone, a spokesperson for CBP said the agency had been asked “to assist in locating an individual possibly aboard Delta flight 1583” who had been “ordered removed by an immigration judge.” The spokesman added that CBP agents “requested identification from those on the flight” but that ultimately “[t]he individual was determined not to be on the flight.”

Rolling Stone asked CBP to point to its statutory authority to stop and examine the identity documents of deplaning domestic passengers. The spokesman sent a link to a document titled CBP Search Authority. The document refers to CBP’s authority to inspect international arrivals. Specifically, it cites 19 C.F.R. 162.6, which states, “All persons, baggage and merchandise arriving in the Customs territory of the United States from places outside thereof are liable to inspection by a CBP officer.” The CBP document adds: “CBP has the authority to collect passenger name record information on all travelers entering or leaving the United States.”(Emphasis added.)

Asked to clarify CBP’s authority over domestic passengers, the spokesman replied that “at this time this is all I have.”

Other Stories of Interest

Man Dies After Breaching TSA Security Checkpoint at Honolulu International Airport

Honolulu International Airport

Honolulu International Airport

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A man in his 40s died after being detained for breaching a TSA security checkpoint at the Honolulu International Airport.

The incident began after Department of Transportation officials said the suspect rushed through an exit lane of a security checkpoint and entered an area where ticketed passengers were waiting to board their flights on Saturday morning, CBS affiliate KGMB reports.

“All of a sudden this man, a very large man, ran through the terminal and started ramming himself through the doors,” reported Hawaii News Now’s Mahealani Richardson. “He looked like he was trying to get out to the runway where the planes are.”

The man was placed in custody.

“Even after he was detained, there was still a struggle and the suspect remained combative and at that point is when he became unresponsive,” said Tim Sakahara, DOT spokesperson.

The man died after being taken to the hospital.

Honolulu police are investigating.

Other Stories of Interest

TSA Discovers Hidden Sword Inside a Cane Used by 80-Year-Old Woman

TSA sword found at an airport, via Myrtle Beach International Airport.

TSA sword found at an airport, via Myrtle Beach International Airport.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

An 80-year-old woman was surprised when she learned that her walking cane contained a hidden sword that was discovered by security at a South Carolina airport, the TSA said.

The woman relinquished her cane after security found a hidden blade nearly the length of the cane at the Myrtle Beach International Airport., the Sun News reports. 

“She had no clue it was in there,” TSA spokesman Mark Howell said.

The woman said she received the cane from her son.

The TSA said it’s not uncommon for people to buy items at thrift stores without knowing that a weapon is stored inside.

Other Stories of Interest

Federal Authorities Detain, Search Phone of NASA Scientist at Airport

nasaBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Sidd Bikkannavar, who works at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab and is a natural-born U.S. citizen, was detained while trying to reenter the United States just as the President Trump’s controversial immigration ban took effect.

But it didn’t stop there. He said Border Patrol agents confiscated his NASA-issued phone, which could include sensitive information, Gizmodo reports. 

Bikkannavar posted about the incident on Facebook:

Sorry for the absence. On my way home to the US last weekend, I was detained by Homeland Security and held with others who were stranded under the Muslim ban. CBP officers seized my phone and wouldn’t release me until I gave my access PIN for them to copy the data. I initially refused, since it’s a JPL-issued phone (Jet Propulsion Lab property) and I must protect access. Just to be clear – I’m a US-born citizen and NASA engineer, traveling with a valid US passport. Once they took both my phone and the access PIN, they returned me to the holding area with the cots and other sleeping detainees until they finished copying my data.

I’m back home, and JPL has been running forensics on the phone to determine what CBP/Homeland Security might have taken, or whether they installed anything on the device. I’ve also been working with JPL legal counsel. I removed my Facebook page until I was sure this account wasn’t also compromised by the intrusion into my phone and connected apps. I hope no one was worried. JPL issued me a new phone and new phone number, which I’ll give out soon.

Bikkannavar had landed at George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston, Texas, on Jan. 30, when he was detained and told that the Border Patrol was going to search his phone.

Bikkannavar told authorities that he was no allowed to hand over his phone because he’s required to protect it.

Former Secretaries of State, Tech Companies Oppose Trump’s Travel Ban

Protest at Detroit Metropolitan Airport. Photo by Steve Neavling.

Protest at Detroit Metropolitan Airport. Photo by Steve Neavling.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

President Trump’s immigration order, which was halted by a federal judge, has come under fire by two former secretaries of state and nearly 100 Silicon Valley tech companies that say they are losing some of the brightest minds.

The federal court’s halt on the immigration order is expected to be taken up today by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit, the Washington Post reports. 

Now Homeland Security must determine “check people coming into our country VERY CAREFULLY,” Trump tweeted.

How that will happen has not been publicly discussed by Homeland Security, which did not return calls to the Post.

“Just cannot believe a judge would put our country in such peril,” Trump wrote. “If something happens blame him and court system. People pouring in. Bad!”

Trump came under fire for attacking the independent judiciary.

FBI: Fort Lauderdale Airport Shooter Says He Was Inspired by ISIS

Esteban Santiago

Esteban Santiago

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The 26-year-old man who killed five people and injured six more in a shooting at Ford Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport earlier this month told authorities the attack was inspired by ISIS.

During Esteban Ruiz Santiago’s bond hearing Tuesday, FBI agents testified that the military veteran said he spoke with other jihadis online before the shooting, Business Insider reports. 

What’s unclear is whether he was working directly with ISIS.

FBI special agent Michael Ferlazzo said Santiago maintained he was under some form of government control.

If convicted, Santiago could face the death penalty.

TSA Reports Record Number of Gun Seizures at Airports in 2016

airport scanner 2By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Airports are reporting a record number of guns were found in carry-on luggage in 2016.

The TSA said 3,391 guns were discovered at checkpoints nationwide – a 28% increase over 2015. Alarmingly, 83% of the guns were loaded.

The airports with the largest number of gun confiscations were George Bush Intercontinental at Houston, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta, Denver International, Dallas/Fort Worth International, and Phoenix Sky Harbor International.

The good news is, gun seizures dropped at JKF LaGuardia and Newark airports.

Other Stories of Interest

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