NEWPORT NEWS, Va. – Transportation Security Administration officials caught a local man with a loaded gun at the Newport News/Williamsburg International Airport checkpoint Thursday morning.
Airport officials say the .380 caliber handgun was loaded with six bullets, including one in the chamber. TSA officials contacted law enforcement and Newport News Airport Police detained the man, a Newport News resident, for questioning.
Police confiscated the man’s gun and cited him on weapons charges.
Officials are reminding people that anyone who brings weapons to a checkpoint is subject to federal civil penalties of up to $13,000. People who have gun carry permits are not permitted to carry a gun on an aircraft.
A typical first offense for carrying a handgun into a checkpoint is $3,900. You can view a complete list of penalties here.
Passengers are allowed to travel with firearms in checked baggage if they are properly packaged and declared. Firearms must be unloaded, packed in a hard-side case, locked and packed separately from ammunition. TSA officials say the gun must be brought to the airline check-in counter to be placed in the belly of the plane with other checked baggage.
Firearm possession laws vary by state and locality. Travelers are advised to familiarize themselves with state and local firearm laws for each point of travel before departure.
TSA has details on how to properly travel with a firearm, which can be viewed here. Airlines may also have additional requirements for traveling with firearms and ammunition. Travelers should also contact their airline regarding firearm and ammunition carriage policies.