TSA catches Guam resident with loaded handgun in bag at Des Moines airport

This loaded handgun was detected by TSA officers in a man’s carry-on bag on Oct. 3, at Des Moines International Airport. (Photo courtesy of TSA.)

Transportation Security Administration officers caught a man with a 9 mm caliber handgun loaded with five bullets, including one in the chamber, in his carry-on bag at Des Moines International Airport on Saturday, Oct. 3.

TSA did not disclose the name of the man, just stating that the man was a resident of Guam.

TSA officials immediately alerted the Des Moines Police, who responded to the checkpoint, and confiscated the firearm from the traveler before citing him on a weapons charge.

“Individuals who want to fly with their firearms are permitted to do so as long as they follow the regulations for transporting their weapon,” said John Bright, TSA’s Federal Security Director for Iowa. “If you want to travel with your firearm, the first thing you should do is make sure it is unloaded. Then pack it in a hard-sided case and lock the case. Upon arriving at the airport, take the case to the airline check-in counter and declare that you want to fly with it. The airline will make sure it is stored securely in the underbelly of the plane so that nobody has access to it during the flight. If you’re unsure how to transport your gun, just visit the TSA website, www.tsa.gov.”

TSA reserves the right to issue a civil penalty to travelers who have guns with them at a checkpoint. This applies to travelers with or without concealed gun carry permits because even though an individual may have a concealed carry permit, it does not allow for a firearm to be carried onto an airplane.

(TSA News Release)