A loaded gun was somehow missed by TSA security officials at LAX. An airport ramp crew found the loaded .38 caliber gun after it fell out of an unzipped compartment of a duffel bag they were loading onto Alaska Airlines Flight 563, the Times reported. The aircraft was due to leave LAX at 8:15 a.m., headed for Portland, Oregon.
The ramp workers alerted LAX police to report their find. Police questioned the gun’s owner, later releasing him and allowing him to board a later flight to Portland.
He turned the gun over to the LAPD. The Los Angeles Times attributed the information to several ‘unnamed law enforcement sources.’
A TSA spokeswoman said she was unfamiliar with the incident.
Loaded Gun TSA LAX Duffel Bag
The traveler did not give Alaska Airlines the required notification that he planned to travel with the gun in his bag, the Times reported. He told authorities that he flew out of Portland using the same bag, with the gun inside, three days prior.
The TSA was created in response to the September 11, 2001, attacks. Its first administrator John Magaw was nominated by President Bush on December 10, 2001, and confirmed by the Senate the following January. The agency’s proponents, including Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta, argued that an only single federal agency would better protect air travel than the private companies who operated under contract to single airlines or groups of airlines that used a given terminal facility.
The organization was charged with developing policies to protect U.S. transportation, especially in airport security and the prevention of aircraft hijacking.